Monthly Archives: October 2016
October 27, 2016
Paw paws are a small yellow fruit native to the Eastern United States, but has a very short harvest season of only a week. Because of this short harvest season, it is hard to find recipes for this delicious fruit so we have adapted a pumpkin pie recipe from Amelia Simons’ “American Cookery” cookbook.
- Pie Crust
- 1 cup Paw Paw Flesh
- 1 cup Milk
- 1 Egg
- 2-3 tbsp. Molasses
- 1 tsp. Allspice
- 1 tsp. ground Ginger
Make sure to remove all seeds from the paw paw flesh and mash it up. Whisk in milk and egg getting the mixture as smooth as possible. Mix in your molasses and spices. This mixture will be a little thin but will thicken up as it cooks.
Pour the mixture into your pie crust and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour 20 minutes. Allow to cool completely, probably even overnight before slicing.
Transcript of Video:[Ivy] Hey dad, look what I found! [Jon] Ah, let’s take a look! Wow, I’ll bet this is the leaf from the tree they came from? [Ivy] What are they? [Jon] These are paw paws. I’ve got an idea for these. Let’s take them to the kitchen. [Jon] So paw paws are a strange exotic kind of fruit. [Ivy] They look like a cross between a potato and an avocado. [Jon] I mean, obviously, these really green ones, these aren’t done, but when they start to turn yellow, maybe with little brown spots like this, like a banana starts to get overripe, that’s when you know they’re getting ripe. [Ivy] What do they look like on the inside? [Jon] Well, on the inside, well, let’s cut this one open and we’ll find out. There we are, so look at that. [Ivy] Wow, it’s yellow. [Jon] Yeah, they’re very yellow on the inside and look at those seeds. Here you can pick one out. [Ivy] They look kind of like beans. [Jon] Definitely has an interesting fruity smell to it, like maybe some mango, that’s kind of what it looks like here, or apple flavor. [Ivy] Mmm, that’s good. [Jon] Is it like a sweet fruity flavor? Let’s see. Mmm, look at the texture though. It’s very soft and almost like a custard on the inside. A very soft and gentle flavor, but nice and sweet. You know they’re not very rare. They actually grow in most of the Eastern United States and all the way up into Eastern lower Canada, but the harvest season on these is very short. They’re really only ripe and ready to go for a couple of weeks, maybe only one week in the year and the forest animals can smell them and they’ll come and get them. [Ivy] I can see why, they’re delicious. [Jon] They do smell really good and you can tell how they could probably smell them from miles away. They also don’t travel well, so we’ll probably never find them in something like a grocery store. You might find them in a local farmer’s market or if you don’t find them there, you going to have to find them yourself in the woods. [Ivy] Did people eat them in the 18th century? [Jon] Actually they were eaten by the Native Americans and the settlers alike in the 18th century and you do find references to them, but you don’t really find them in any cookbooks, probably because they weren’t available all the time, so you never find a recipe until much later on in the 19th century. There’s also references to Louis and Clark feeding on these almost entirely at the very end of their journey’s in 1806. Louis and Clark were coming back and all their supplies were gone and so they had nothing but paw paws to survive on for a short period of time. So, let’s pretend we’re settlers and you’ve brought a whole bunch of paw paws to me, in fact you have brought a whole bunch of paw paws to me today and we can’t eat them all right away so what are we going to do with them? [Ivy] I would find a recipe that I really liked that would preserve them. [Jon] Right, but we don’t have any recipes that they had in the 18th century, so maybe we would… [Ivy] I would adapt the recipe for something similar. [Jon] And that’s exactly what they would have done in the 18th century. I’ve got a good idea for something that would probably cook up nicely. Hand me that little cookbook over there. So, this is Amelia Simons’ “American Cookery” cookbook. She did this one in 1796. It’s got a perfect recipe that I think will work with this. It’s called a pumpkin pudding. It’s really much what we would call a pumpkin pie, so we’ll adapt that recipe for these paw paws. Let’s get started. [Jon] So, to get started, I’ve got a pie plate here with our pie crust in it and I’m going to set this aside and we’ll work on the filling. And the filling I’ve got here is about 1 cup of the paw paw flesh. We’ve got it taken out. I’m not sure if I got all the seeds, so I want you to mash that up and make sure we got all the seeds out. [Jon] Good, that looks like we don’t have any seeds in there so go ahead and lift that out. I’m going to add in about 1 cup of milk. We’ll add that to it, and I’ve got 1 egg we’ll add to this. Pretty simple recipe. There’s our egg. And now we can whisk it. Now the trick with this is to get it ask smooth as we can. We don’t want it to be too lumpy. And this fruit can be a little stringy, you know, it changes its consistency, so we’re really going to have to get it mixed up well. [Jon] Good, you’ve got that nice and smooth. We’ll add 2-3 tablespoons of this molasses and now we can add some spices. I’ve got a teaspoon of allspice and a teaspoon of ground ginger. We’ll add those in and keep mixing. Okay, it looks like you’ve got the consistency pretty well. There’s still a little lumpy but I don’t think it’s going to make any difference in this particular recipe. [Ivy] It looks really runny. [Jon] Well, you know, it is very, very thin, but I’ve made this recipe before and I thought at first, the first time I made it, that it was not going to work, but I baked it anyway, and it turned out perfect, so I’m going to trust that this will work out just fine, so let’s pour this into our pie plate, here we go. [Jon] Okay, our pie plate is filled nicely. This looks good. It’s ready to go in the oven, so we’ll bake this at 350 degrees for maybe an hour and 20 minutes. I’ll put this in the oven. [Jon] Before we slice this pie, we need to make sure that it’s cooled completely, probably even overnight. [Ivy] I’m surprised how dark it is. [Jon] You know, it is nice and dark. It looks very rich. Part of the color is going to be from the molasses and part of it’s just what’s happening with the paw paw. Let’s find out how it tastes. [Jon] Well, boy, I’m really trying to find the flavor for this. It’s a wonderful flavor. It’s got a little bit of pumpkin pie in it but it’s much fruitier. It has an amazing little flavor to it. Boy, this is really good. [Ivy] I can taste the allspice in it. [Jon] Yeah, it’s wonderfully flavored. Thanks for bringing those paw paws in. They turned out to be tremendous in this dish and I want to thank you for coming along as we experiment. You never know what these things are going to turn out like, so as we savor the flavors and the aromas of the 18th century. And a special thanks to Jim Hoffman for his assistance in this episode.
If you’re new to our channel, I want to welcome you. You can subscribe by clicking the button right up here. Also, check out our related videos. Thanks so much for watching.
October 24, 2016
October 21, 2016
This is a wonderful variation of a plum pudding called hunter’s pudding that uses raisins for the plum. This dish was popular from the mid-18th century to the 20th century, found in British cookbooks and also popular in colonial America. Plum puddings were often associated with special occasions, served during certain holidays or when visitors came to visit. A hunter’s pudding was likely reserved for various special occasions such as a formal hunt, but that’s not to say ordinary people didn’t enjoy a hunter’s pudding on occasion. This recipe comes from “The Lady’s Assistant”, a 1775 cookbook published from Charlotte Mason’s manuscripts. This is a half batch, so if you want to make a full size batch, all you’ll need is double the ingredients and add an hour to the cooking time.
- ½ lb. Flour
- ½ lb. Suet (Kidney Fat)
- ½ lb. Currants (dried, seedless, Corinthian Grapes)
- 4 oz. Raisins
- 2 tbsp. Candied Orange Peel
- 2 tbsp. Candied Citron
- 1 tsp. Nutmeg
- 3-4 tbsp. Brandy
- 4 Eggs
- 1 cup Cream
Preparing this pudding’s going to be very easy. We’re just going to add all of our dry ingredients plus our sweetmeats and mix well. Next whisk your eggs together in a separate bowl then combine your cream and brandy with the eggs. Once those are completely mixed, add them to your dry ingredients. This should make a pretty thick paste.
Now when you’re going to boil a pudding, there are a few things you have to have ready to go. You need a couple of pots of water boiling.
A large one will be for boiling the pudding itself. The smaller pot will be used to refill the water as it boils away in the larger one. You’ll also need a clean piece of cloth for each of the puddings you’re going to boil. Linen makes a really good pudding cloth, because the water makes the fibers swell up and the weave even tighter. You can also use cotton osnaburg. You’ll also need a stout cord to tie the cloth off with.
Put your cloth into your boiling water for a few minutes to scald, then dust the pudding side with flour and lay in a bowl. Place your pudding dough into the cloth then tie the bag tightly around the dough.
Place your pudding into the boiling water for 3 hours. Make sure to only replenish this water with boiling water. You want this water to not stop boiling at any time, because that will increase your cooking time.
Once your pudding has finished boiling, you will want to dip it in cold water for a few seconds to make it easier to remove the cloth without damaging the surface of your pudding.
If you don’t want to spend 4 or 5 hours boiling a pudding at your next event, you can cook these ahead of time. You can cook these the week before if you leave them in their pudding cloth, then you can take them to the event. When you’re ready to use them, you can either boil them for an hour right before you need them or you can slice them cold and then either fry them or broil them.
These puddings were usually served with a sauce. The most common type is equal parts of butter, sugar, and sac.
This pudding is very dense and rich. With all the raisins it’s very sweet. Compared to today’s palate, it was likely this would be the sweetest thing people of the 18th century would eat all year. This would make a great addition or finish to any celebration. You really should try these.
Transcript of Video:
Today I’m going to be doing something a little different. A dish that was popular all the way from the mid-18th century to the 20th century, found in British cookbooks and also popular in colonial America. We’re going to be making a hunter’s pudding. Thanks for joining us today on 18th Century Cooking with Jas Townsend and Son.
A hunter’s pudding is a type of plum pudding and a plum in this context means raisins. Plum puddings were often associated with special occasions, served during certain holidays or when visitors came to visit. The name hunter’s pudding may be a bit deceiving. We need to be careful about assuming that it was a favorite dish for backwoodsmen. Rather, a hunter’s pudding was likely a pudding that would have been reserved for various special occasions such as a formal hunt, but that’s not to say ordinary people didn’t enjoy a hunter’s pudding on occasion. Hunter’s puddings were popular from the mid 1700’s up until the beginning of the 20th century. Let’s get started.
We’re going to be making a recipe from “The Lady’s Assistant”, a 1775 cookbook published from Charlotte Mason’s manuscripts. We’re making half batches today, so if you want to make a full size batch, all you’ll need is double the ingredients. It will change the cooking time, so we’ll talk about that as we cook it, but to start, let’s look at the ingredients.
I’m using a half pound of flour and a half pound of suet. Now when I say suet, I mean kidney fat. In a previous episode, we explored the difference between suet and hard muscle fat and when it comes to making puddings, there’s a huge difference, so if you go to your butcher to ask for suet, make sure he gives you kidney fat. If you can’t find kidney fat to use or if you have neither the time nor the inclination to render it yourself, Jas Townsend and Son now carries Atora shredded suet. This suet is made from rendered kidney fat. It’s stabilized with a little flour. Because it’s rendered properly, it doesn’t need refrigerating.
In addition, we’re using a half a pound of currants. Unlike the fleshy red berries that go by the same name and are related to the gooseberry, these currants are small dried seedless Corinthian grapes. Also in our pudding we’ll be using about 4 ounces of raisins. Now raisins in the 18th century had seeds in them so they had to be cut open and seeds removed before they could be used in a recipe like this. There were different kinds of raisins in the 18th century. The best of the raisins were dried in the sun as opposed to dried in ovens. These were called raisins of the sun and most of the time they were imported in jars so they would be many times called jar raisins. The best of these raisins were called Malaga or Muscato raisins. They were grown in Spain and imported throughout much of Europe and North America. Our modern raisins are similar in quality to a midlevel jar raisin of the 18th century while having the convenience of being seedless.
Next we’re going to be adding a couple of tablespoons of candied orange peel and candied citron. Our recipe will also use about a teaspoon of nutmeg and 3-4 tablespoons of brandy. Now here’s something interesting about the addition of brandy into these puddings, it started to be added in the second half of the 18th century and in many of the recipes they find that the addition of the brandy helped in the preservation of the pudding and many times its noted that the puddings can be kept for up to 6 months if you keep the pudding still wrapped in its pudding cloth and kept up out of reach. This allowed cooks to make multiple puddings at once, serving one immediately and the others later on.
Finally, back to our recipe, we’ll need 4 eggs and 1 cup of cream. Now that’s it for the ingredients. Now that we’ve gathered them up, let’s put this pudding together.
Preparing this pudding’s going to be very easy. We’re just going to add all of our dry ingredients plus our sweetmeats.
And don’t forget to add the nutmeg.
That’s mixed quite well.
Okay, now that our dry ingredients are done, let’s move on to our wet ingredients. Let’s whisk our eggs together.
And then we’re going to add in our cream and our last wet ingredient, our brandy.
Now let’s add this to our dry ingredients.
It should make a pretty thick paste.
Now when you’re going to boil a pudding, there are a few things you have to have ready to go. You need a couple of pots of water boiling. Our large one will be for boiling the pudding itself. The smaller pot we’ll use to refill the water as the water boils away. You’ll also need a clean piece of cloth. One for each of the puddings you’re going to boil. Linen makes a really good pudding cloth. The water makes the fibers swell up and the weave even tighter. You can also use cotton osnaburg. Go ahead and scald these cloths.
You’ll also need a stout cord to tie the cloth off with. Remove the cloths from the boiling water and dust each with a little flour, then set each one aside, flour side up, into a bowl. Gather your pudding dough and place it on top of the cloth.
Tie the bag tightly around the dough.
Now it’s time to put this in the boiling water and boil it for 3 hours. You want to make sure to only replenish this water with boiling water. You want this water to not stop boiling at any time, because that will increase your cooking time.
Now like I said, this is a half size pudding. If you’re going to be doing a full size pudding, you’ll want to boil this for 4 hours.
Okay, the hunter’s pudding has boiled 3 hours. You’ll need a bucket of cold water on hand. By dipping the hot pudding in the cold water for a few seconds it will make it easier to get the cloth off without damaging the surface of your pudding.
If you don’t want to spend 4 or 5 hours boiling a pudding at your next event, you can cook these ahead of time. You can cook these the week before if you leave them in their pudding cloth, then you can take them to the event, when you’re ready to use them, you can either boil them for an hour right before you need them or you can slice them cold and then either fry them or broil them.
These puddings were usually served with a sauce and the sauce we’re using here is the most common type which is equal parts of butter, sugar, and sac.
Let’s give these a try.
And they’re a very dense and rich kind of food here. These are chalk full of raisins and they’re nice and sweet. In fact, compared to today’s palate, 18th folks were not used to such sweet things, so it’s likely that this would be the sweetest thing they would eat all year long. These would make a great addition or finish to a nice period meal and because you can fix them the week ahead of time, they’re a perfect kind of thing you can pull out of the hat and fry these up from something that’s been prepared without spending the 4 hours of boiling them at the event. You should really try these. These are wonderful dishes.
This recipe and many others are available on our SavoringthePast.net cooking blog. We also have an image reference blog of 17th and 18th century paintings and drawings called SiftingthePast.com. Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel so you don’t miss any upcoming episodes. And finally, our online catalog and our printed catalog that has hundreds of 18th and 19th century men’s and women’s clothing, historical cooking items, and camping items.
I want to thank you for joining us today as we savor the flavors and the aromas of the 18th century.
October 7, 2016
If you're ever in the Fishers, Indiana area, a short drive northeast of Indianapolis, you really should visit the fine folks at Prairie Town -- an 1836 frontier village located in the heart of Conner Prairie Interactive History Park. When you do, you may be lucky enough to find sweet Mrs. Curtis making her favorite dessert for her employer, Dr. Campbell. This amazing recipe finds its roots in the late 1700's. It's called Parmesan Ice Cream -- a very unusual savory ice cream that I think you’re going to love!
- 6 Eggs
- 3 oz. grated Parmesan Reggiano Cheese
- 1 cup of Simple Syrup
- 2 cups sugar cooked with 1 cup water and simmered until dissolved (If you are using a modern ice cream maker you can use the sugar straight)
- 2 cups Cream
The first thing you want to do is whisk your 6 eggs together. Then add in about 3 ounces of finely grated high-quality Parmesan Cheese.
You to avoid using any of the processed cheeses available in those green cans. For the best flavor, use the real stuff. Next, add in your syrup, or straight sugar if you are using a modern ice cream maker. If you are using straight sugar, don’t worry too much about it dissolving completely because it will dissolve as we heat it up in the next step.
To our mixture we’re going to add 2 cups of cream and stir well.
Pour the mixture into a pot and set over over medium-low heat, stirring constantly. Every so often, pull the spoon out and drag your finger across the back.
Once your custard is ready it should leave an open spot on the spoon that doesn’t close up. Remove from heat and allow to cool for about 30 minutes.
Once your custard has cooled, pour it into your ice cream maker. If you are using a modern ice cream maker, follow the instructions provided with your machine. We are using an 18th-century style sabotiere. Make sure not to overfill your ice cream maker. This recipe came only 1/3 of the way up the side of our sabotiere.
Prepare your ice so that it covers above the fill line of the custard but not so high that it leaks into your ice cream. Layer in some coarse salt as you fill your bucket around the sabotiere with ice. This will drop the temperature of the ice to below freezing. Allow the sabotiere to sit for for about 7-8 minutes, before you churn your sabotiere back and forth in the ice for 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, carefully wipe off the top and remove the lid. Scrape down all of the iced cream forming around the inside edges of the sabotiere. Close the sabotiere back up and repeat the cycle by letting it set for 7-8 minutes before churning for another 10 minutes.Once again, scrape the sides down the inside, and repeat the process again about three more times, or until the ice cream is at your desired consistency.
Keep in mind that the longer you let it set, the stiffer the ice cream will be, but it may also become difficult to remove from the ice cream maker.
When eating this ice cream, you'll notice it tastes sweet at first, followed by the salty savory flavor of cheese a little later.
Transcript of Video:
We’re here today at Connor Prairie in Fishers, Indiana. It’s a premier Living Historic site, and we’ve got a wonderful recipe for you. Thanks for joining us today on 18th Century Cooking.[Jon] I’m here today with Mrs. Curtis and she’s promised to show me this amazing recipe for parmesan ice cream. Now, when I first heard parmesan ice cream, number one, I love ice cream and I love parmesan, but I thought, now wait a minute… [Mrs. Curtis] The two together (Laughing softly) [Jon] Tell me about this parmesan ice cream. [Mrs. Curtis] I think you’ll love it. It’s a savory ice cream. [Jon] Okay [Mrs. Curtis] But it has a little bit of sweet and it’s very, very creamy and it’s so easy to go down your throat. [Jon] I can’t wait to try it. Let’s get started. [Mrs. Curtis] Alright. Well, to begin the receipt, we have to have 6 eggs. [Jon] okay, [Mrs. Curtis] We’ve already tested the eggs so we know that they all sank to the bottom and they’re fresh, so if you’ll begin, let’s break each one. Once these eggs are all in, then we will whisk those. To that, we’re going to add 3 ounces of grated parmesan cheese. [Jon] If you want the best flavor with this recipe, make sure you use actual real parmesan cheese. Parmesan Reggiano, not any of the processed parmesan cheese that comes in a green can. Don’t even try it with that. You really want the real stuff. [Mrs. Curtis] Then we’re going to add 1 cup of syrup. [Jon] Okay [Mrs. Curtis] The syrup is 2 cups of sugar cooked with 1 cup of water and simmered until it dissolves.
I want to give a special thanks to all the folks at Connor Prairie and make sure to check out their website. If you’re new to our channel, I want to welcome you. You can subscribe by clicking the button right up here. Also, check out our related videos. Thanks so much for watching.