As I've been reading this week's old cookbook (that I plan to review on Friday) I almost can't contain my excitement! If you've been reading me for very long, you know that the more battered, stained and dog-eared a book is, the more I'm intrigued. I love reading through books with recipes (receipts) that are so antiquated that scientific advancements would tell you that they are no longer appropriate for the human diet. I'm a history buff who enjoys getting my insights and clues to the everyday lives of our ancestors through their foods and medicines. I know that most intelligent, normal, people who like history, read books on the Civil War or the Land Rush, but for me there's just no history book as intimate to everyday life in the past as a cookbook or recipe file (unless it's a hand-written log or diary).
Our cookbook for review this week contains recipes from the 1800's and early 1900's , some brought across the country westward from other states and some that were born out of necessity on the rugged trail west. There are remedies for ailments (that cowboys carried in their packs) because there were often no doctors or dentists available (medical practices were very crude even if one was present!) I don't want to give too much away; I'm still reading and taking notes for my review. Please join me Friday! Here's one tidbit. This southern recipe came west with Martha F. Vandiver Webster. She traveled to Oklahoma right after the land run, toting 5 hungry children who, "Gobbled these Hog's Ears right up" every time she made them.
submitted by Martha J. Birchum (Chickasha, OK)
1 C flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 C water
1 1/2 C simple syrup
Sift flour and salt together. Add enough water, 1/4 C or more, to make a thin, stiff dough. Cut off small portions of the dough and roll out very, very thin on floured board. Repeat this operation til all dough is used-12 times. Fold each "ear" over loosely and drop into deep hot fat, cook til light brown and drain.
Simple Syrup: To make simple syrup, boil two parts water to one part sugar for a short time (It can be used for many things, especially to mix with fresh fruit juices for drinks). For "hog's ears" boil the syrup to softball stage (may need to increase the amount of sugar). Dip 'ears" in hot syrup, place on platter and sprinkle with chopped pecans.
***Happy 17th Birthday, Ben!!***
I will be at these recipe swaps today: