Historical Recipes

We are often asked for the recipes used during the Village’s 19th C. cooking demonstrations.

When Village cooks create a meal, they often use ingredients that are available from the garden outside their kitchen door.  Most of the cooking is done over an open fire and in cast iron pans. The baking is flavored with the woody traces that remain in the beehive oven. These conditions add flavors that are difficult to duplicate in a modern kitchen or on gas grill. Cooking in the 1800s did not require the use of standard measurements or specific times for baking and cooking. You cooked the food till it was “done perfectly. Traditional methods developed by 19th c. women are followed, using the senses of sight, touch, sound and taste to determine if additional ingredients are needed. Every attempt has been made to standardize the recipes; however, please feel free to adjust accordingly.

Cold Cream of Lima Bean Soup – Spicer Leaming Collection

  • 1 lb. dried large white lima beans
  • 2 leeks diced
  • 1 potato diced
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 qt chicken stock
  • 2 sprigs fresh mint
  • 1 pint light cream

Soak lima beans overnight. Cook lima beans for 1 hour in enough water to cover. Add leek, potato and onion. Cook until beans are soft. Add chicken stock as needed. Put soup into food mill and mash. Discard lima bean skins. Add remaining chicken stock and one sprig of fresh mint and chill overnight. Mix with light cream and serve. Garnish with remaining mint leaves.

Vegetable Beef Soup

  • 10 carrots sliced
  • 2 onions diced
  • 2 ribs of celery diced
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 potatoes peeled and diced
  • 1 qt of beef stock
  • 1 bouquet garnish (thyme, marjoram. chives)

Place first four ingredients in stock pot and cook till vegetables are wilted. Add remaining ingredients. Cook for one hour until flavors are well blended.

Beef Stew

  • 4 lb. stew meat in 1 inch cubes
  • 1 beef soup bone
  • 1/2 c. flour with salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 c. vegetable oil or bacon grease
  • 2 cloves garlic minced 3 onions diced
  • 2 ribs of celery diced
  • 6 carrots sliced
  • bay leaf. thyme, parsley
  • 1 qt. beef stock
  • 6oz. fresh mushrooms

Dredge stew meat in seasoned flour. Heat oil in Dutch oven.  Sauté onion, garlic, celery and meat. Cook till meat is lightly browned on all sides. Add stock and remaining vegetables and herbs. Simmer on low heat until done stirring occasionally. If stew does not thicken, add 2 tbsp. flour mixed with 1/2 c. water. Cook until thickened.

Indian Pudding – Spicer Leaming Collection

  • 1 qt. milk
  • 3 T. Indian meal (cornmeal)
  • butter
  • 3/4 c. molasses

Take the milk and pour off one cupful and reserve; put the remainder in a pan and warm. Stir in 3 dessert spoons full of Indian meal (cornmeal); let it come to a boil then remove from flame. Stir in a piece of butter the size of an egg and the molasses. Pour into a pudding dish, then add the cold milk held in reserve without stirring. Set in the oven and bake at 350 degrees two and one-half to three hours. Serve hot with hard sauce.

Hard Sauce

  • 1 T. butter
    1 egg white

Add to the butter as much soft sugar as you can beat in it. Add one white of egg beaten stiff. Beat all together and add more sugar to make stiff.

Molasses Cookies – Martha Fogg & Caroline Gross Breslin

  • 1/2 c. shortening
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. molasses
  • 1 egg well-beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 c. coffee (hot)
  • 3 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ginger

Add baking soda to coffee while still hot, let cool. Beat shortening and sugar. Add the following and beat after each addition: molasses, egg, vanilla and cooled coffee mixture. Mix flour, cinnamon and ginger. Add dry mixture a little at a time, stirring with a spoon. Drop large spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet. Spread out slightly with back of spoon. Bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes. Finished cookies will be large and soft.  Caroline Gross Breslin 1883-1956, descendant of Martha Fogg.

Raisin Bread

  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 2 c. warm milk
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 3 tbsp. melted butter
  • 5- 6 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 /2 c. white raisins
  • 2 tbsp. sugar with 1 tsp. cinnamon

Dissolve yeast in 1/4 c. warm milk add first tbsp. sugar. Let proof. In a large bowl combine remaining milk . salt and butter. Add yeast and 3 c. of flour, one c. at a time. Beat until smooth. Gradually stir in enough flour to make a stiff dough. Turn onto a wooden board and knead until smooth. Let rise till double in bulk. Punch down. Shape in a rectangle and sprinkle with raisins and cinnamon sugar. Shape into loaves. You can bake in loaf pans or free- formed on a cookie sheet. Use corn meal under free-form loaves. Let rise. Before placing in oven, brush with water for a crispy crust or brush with a beaten egg for a shiny crust. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Reduce heat and bake at 350 degrees for 20 -30 minutes. Bread sounds hollow when done.