Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Frederick MD working hearths ... Museums by Candlelight

On Saturday, December 9, there will be 26 sites open for free with music, activities, crafts and food, in Frederick and the County. Several homes have squirrel tail ovens (small section in photo) and other interesting features. Always fun. If you are nearby, go visit.

Friday, November 10, 2023

WWI and WWII bakers and cookery schools

A World War I recruiting poster. Enlist as a group and serve with your "pals" in a Company of Bakers. For experienced or trainees up to 45 years old.

A World War II school in the desert in Egypt used ovens out of petrol tins and oil drums. Both images from Library of Congress.

Sunday, October 29, 2023

Charleston SC iron top stew stove

Aiken-Rhett House's original stew stove, left. Gov. William Aiken added the stewstove with cast iron top to the kitchen in the outbuilding in 1858. I've seen cast iron tops on stew stoves, and each is wonderfully different. Charleston and tea are the focus of three upcoming talks.

Saturday, October 14, 2023

Sweet potato storage in 1843 Virginia

Special sweet potato houses or cellars were constructed to be ventilated, heated or smoked to dry out the potatoes. On loft over fire. Cooked on coals. Upcoming zoom talks, CHAA's Gilded Age dining is today.

Saturday, September 30, 2023

Cider press - wood or stone

William Sidney Mount's 1840 painting of cider making in Setauket, Long Island, NY. Lancaster, Pa. cider presses 1778 and 1800.
Upcoming virtual talks.

Friday, September 8, 2023

Working stew stoves in museums

Stew stoves (US), Stewing stoves (UK), Stew-hole stoves, Brick stove, Masonry stoves and Portagers are some of the modern terms. They are different shapes and height, and generally made from brick and clay. The following is a sampling of museums doing demos on their stew stoves.

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Culinary Historians of Boston

In 1980, Barbara Ketcham Wheaton, Joyce Toomre and Ann Robert started what would become the Culinary Historians of Boston. The first in the US. But they "have decided to suspend activities as of the end of 2022."

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Civil War mess kettles

The versatile mess kettle - to cook, for coffee, to carry water, to wash clothes.

"Food and Agriculture during the Civil War" talk is this Friday, TAPE HERE. Just learned about it today so putting out a quick post.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Scherbet - Turkish and Greek, 1838

Several types of Scherbet were described by Friedrich Unger, the German confectioner to King Otto of Greece, in his 1838 book. The Scherbet street vendor used snow to chill the water dripping onto the moving fan, then added the water to a glass with flavored syrup from the bottles.

Friday, July 14, 2023

Fire in flour mills - Sanborn fire insurance maps, 6 fire dangers 1795

Fire was one threat to flour mills, flooding was another. The Sanborn maps of all buildings in a town (earliest 1868) contained information to help insurance agents... and firemen - building material (stone - blue, wood - yellow, brick - red), fire equipment in the complex, what was on each floor, fuel and more. This is an Ellicott City MD mill. Check to see if your local mill, home or other building is on a Sanborn map.
Oliver Evans wrote about six flour mill fire hazards in 1795.

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Candling, Egg testing

Holding an egg up to the light was one way to determine if it was newly laid as described by Hieronymus Fabricius of Aquapendente (died 1619). Candling could also show if the egg was fertilized; or black spots ment the egg was bad. New eggs floated. Glass eggs and rounded egg baskets.

Friday, June 9, 2023

Silk bolting for flour mills 1790s

By 1794 a "manufactory for making bolting silk" was started in Wilmington, Delaware by Robert Dawson. He applied for a patent (got it), and petitioned the US House of Rep to not pay duty on imported raw silk (denied).

Friday, June 2, 2023

Rumford Baking Powder recipe slide, Count Rumford taped talks and Hot Milk Cake

This recipe pull out card (recipe slide) of 1926, included 25 recipes for cakes and cookies, one being Hot Milk Cake, by Mrs. Lily H Wallace for Rumford Baking Powder. Two early Hot Milk Cake recipes are from church cookbooks c1900.

Click to enlarge and see how the ingredients are listed.
Several taped talks on Count Rumford

Friday, May 26, 2023

Army bake oven with a barrel

Memorial Day - To remember all who sacrificed their lives to preserve our democracy.

The Manual for Army Cooks 1896 image of an above ground dirt oven and an iron dutch oven.

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Steam kitchen in "Hannah Glasse"

Ofcourse not in the original Glasse (1708-1770) cookbook, but years after her death, her name was used for an 1843 book, which was copied by M.A. Reynolds in her/his 1850 book The Complete Art of Cookery. The small book (a little over three by five inches, 256 pages) has delightful sketches.

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Salt Mines

Marvelous sketches of huge salt mines, the Salt Desert and a chapel of salt are in Aunt Martha's Corner Cupboard: or, Stories about Tea, Coffee, Sugar, Rice, etc, editions from 1895-1928. Other sources of salt which are pictured, range from salt licks to boiled down seawater.
More pictures added from various editions, 11 total. Click images to enlarge.

Sunday, May 7, 2023

Dutch milk-cellars 1869

“… butter made in a cellar, was far preferable to that made in a spring-house.” More in my Milk Cellars in 1840s Del. and 1870s NC blog post HERE.
Milk exhibit and talks from Wellcome in London.

Saturday, April 29, 2023

Coronation Banquets - Many images 1685, 1821

From 1189 (Richard the Lionheart) to 1821 (George IV) large coronation banquets were held in Westminster Hall. The former Prince Regent was such a lavish spender that the elderly William IV in 1831 did not have a large banquet, and neither did Queen Victoria, seven years later. A c1610 banqueting recipe manuscript and a ledger on the 1821 banquet are online.

Sunday, April 23, 2023

Mrs. Beeton's Corks with Wooden Tops

Instead of sealing a corked bottle with melted resin or wax, the corks with wooden tops were easier to remove and able to reuse.
There is a newly listed talk this Thursday on "Malinda Russell, the author of the First African American Cookbook" 1866. Also, spaces have been added for the Mrs. Raffold (Before Mrs. Beeton) talk on Wednesday.

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Acton & Mrs. Raffald cookbook talks

Eliza Acton and Elizabeth Raffald are two British cookbook authors featured in talks this month, as are two collections - Longone Culinary Archives at U Michigan and the Jewish Food Society’s online archive.

Raffald's Chocolate Puffs and Acton's Clarified Marrow recipes.