Each day, the costumed interpreters at Old Sturbridge Village demonstrate 19th-century cooking. The recipes for special dishes (or “receipts” as they were called in the 1830s) are frequently available to visitors who witness the demonstrations. A select list of the most frequently requested recipes are available here. Many include a video showing how to make the recipe.

Another Christmas Cookey

Original Recipe

To three pound flour, sprinkle a tea cup of fine powdered coriander seed, rub in one pound butter, and one and half pound sugar, dissolve three tea spoonfuls of pearl ash in a tea cup of milk, kneed all together well, roll three quarters of an inch thick, and cut or stamp into shape and size you please, bake slowly fifteen or twenty minutes; tho’ hard and dry at first, if put into an earthern pot, and dry cellar, or damp room, they will be finer, softer and better when six months old.

                                     From American Cookery by Amelia Simmons, 1796

Modern Adaptation

3 cups of flour
1/8 (4 tbsps.) cup of coriander
¼ lb. of butter
1-2 cups of milk; mix until the dough feels like pie crust
¾ cup of sugar
¾ tsp. baking soda/cream of tartar mix

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°.  Grease a baking pan.
  2. In a large bowl, rub butter into flour, sugar, and coriander.  Dissolve baking soda & cream of tartar in the milk. Add to flour mixture and combine well.
  3. Roll out on a board ½ inch thick, cut with your favorite shaped cutters, bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Enjoy, and have a Merry Christmas!

Bird's Nest Pudding

Original Receipt

If you wish to make what is called ‘Bird’s-nest puddings,’ prepare your custard,–take eight or ten pleasant apples, pare them and dig out the core, but leave them whole, set them in a pudding dish, pour your custard over them, and bake them about twenty or thirty minutes.

The American Frugal Housewife, Lydia Maria Child, 1833

Modern Method

6-8+ apples
2 cups of milk
3 eggs
½ cup of brown sugar
½ teaspoon of cinnamon

  1. Preheat the oven to 350⁰F
  2. Grease a deep casserole dish (round or rectangular- 9 by 9 inches square or a 9 inch deep pie plate, or a 9 inch Bundt pan)
  3. Peel and core apples and leave whole, to fit snugly in the baking dish.
  4. Make the custard by beating the milk, eggs, brown sugar, and cinnamon together well.
  5. Pour the custard over the apples in the dish.
  6. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the custard is set.

Eat hot or cold.

Chowder

Please Note: This 19th-century recipe for chowder is more like what modern cooks would call a casserole rather than a soup.

Original Receipt

Four pounds of fish are enough to make a chowder, for four or five people,–half dozen slices of salt pork in the bottom of the pot,–hang it high, so that the pork may not burn,–take it out when done very brown,–put in a layer of fish, cut in lengthwise slices,–then a layer formed of crackers, small or sliced onions, and potatoes sliced as thin as a four-pence, mixed with pieces of pork you have fried; then a layer of fish again, and so on. Six crackers are enough. Strew a little salt and pepper over each layer; over the whole pour a bowl full of flour and water, enough to come up even with the surface of what you have in the pot. A sliced lemon adds to the flavor. A cup of Tomato catsup is very excellent. Some people put in a cup of beer. A few clams are a pleasant addition. It should be covered so as not to let a particle of steam escape, if possible. Do not open it, except when nearly done, to taste if it be well seasoned.

The American Frugal Housewife, Lydia Maria Child, 1830

Modern Method

3 medium onions
4-5 slices thick cut bacon
Salted fish (soaked overnight)
Crackers*
4 potatoes
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
Juice of one lemon
½ cup flour
1 cup homemade tomato ketchup

*Historic crackers can be found at the Vermont Country Store. Alternately, you can use oyster crackers or unsalted saltines. You will need enough crackers to cover each layer of fish, (roughly 25-30 common crackers or 20-30 saltines).

  1. Fry bacon until the fat coats the bottom of the pan. Add sliced onions and fry until the onions are soft and golden.
  2. Break up the salted fish (after soaking overnight) into small pieces, discarding any skin or bones.
  3. Layer fish, crackers, onions, potatoes, bacon, salt, and pepper in a crockpot or a casserole dish.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix lemon juice, ketchup, 1-quart water, and flour. Pour mixture over the layered items in the crockpot or casserole dish.
  5. Cook in the crockpot on low for 6 to 8 hours. If using a casserole dish, bake in covered casserole dish at 350° for 45 minutes and then uncovered for an additional 15 minutes.
  6. Enjoy!

Cranberry Sauce

This receipt was originally published in 1851 in Eliza Leslie’s Directions for Cookery (Henry Carey Baird, Philadelphia).

Original Receipt

Wash a quart of ripe cranberries, and put them into a pan with about a wine-glass of water. Stew them slowly, and stir them frequently, particularly after they begin to burst. They require a great deal of stewing, and should be like a marmalade when done. After you take them from the fire, stir in a pound of brown sugar. You may strain the pulp through a cullendar or sieve into a mould, and when it is in a firm shape send it to table on a glass dish.

Modern Adaptation

1 pound cranberries
2-3 cups sweetening, sugar or molasses or a combination

  1. Simmer cranberries over low heat, until soft, approximately 12-15 minutes.
  2. Straining is optional. To remove seeds and skins, use a food mill or strain
    pulp through a very coarse strainer. Reheat before adding sugar or molasses. Use only about 2 cups of sugar or molasses if skins and seeds have been discarded.
  3. Stir sugar or molasses into hot sauce and remove from heat when completely melted, about 2-3 minutes. Serve hot or cold.

Yield: 6 cups

Reprinted from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), with permission.

Dressed Macaroni (19th-Century Style Macaroni & Cheese)

Original Receipt

Put a piece of butter, half a pound of macaroni, an onion stick with two cloves, and a little salt into hot water, boil them for three quarters of an hour, and then, if the macaroni is flexible, take it out and drain it well. Put it into another saucepan with two ounces of butter, three of grated Parmesan cheese, a little pepper and nutmeg; Toss up the whole together, adding two or three spoonfuls of cream; When done, put it on a dish, and serve it very hot.

From The Housekeeper’s Book, 1838

Modern Adaptation

8 ounces dry pasta (see how to make pasta from scratch below!)
1 small onion
2 whole cloves
1 tsp salt
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup of freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
1/4 teaspoon fresh nutmeg
3 tablespoons cream
1/4 cup of breadcrumbs (optional)

  1. Boil noodles with one tablespoon of butter and with the onion studded with two cloves for about 10 minutes (onion and cloves are to be discarded in this recipe, but you can also choose to slice the onion and layer it among the pasta before baking).
  2. Drain and toss the noodles with two more tablespoons of butter, cheese, nutmeg and cream.
  3. Optional: place dressed noodles in a baking dish and cover with bread crumbs and another tablespoon of butter and bake at 350⁰F for 20 minutes or broil in the oven until breadcrumbs are brown. This comes from several other historic receipts for dressing macaroni.

Enjoy!

Dried Apple and Cranberry Pie

Original Recipe

Take two quarts dried apples, put them into an earthen pot that contains one gallon, fill it with water and set it in a hot oven, adding one handful of cranberries; after baking one hour fill the pot again with water; when done and the apple cold, strain it and add thereto the juice of three or four limes, raisins, sugar, orange peel and cinnamon to your taste.

Modern Adaptation

2 cups dried apples
Water to cover apples
2 cups cranberries
3/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon orange peel
2 limes
Pie Crust

  1. Cover dried apples with water. Soak 2-3 hours. Drain water, reserving 1 cup.
  2. In saucepan, simmer soaked apples, 1 cup water, and cranberries until cranberries start to burst.
  3. Remove from heat, add sugar, raisins, cinnamon, orange peel, and the juice of two limes.
  4. Prepare Pie Crust. Pour mixture into pie plate lined with lower crust. Cover with upper crust.
  5. Bake in preheated 400° oven 1 hour.

Yield: one 9-inch pie

Reprinted from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), with permission.

Fricasseed Jerusalem Artichokes

Original Receipt

“Wash and scrape or pare them: boil them in milk and water till they are soft, which will be from a quarter to a half of an hour. Take them out and stew them a few minutes in the following sauce: Roll a bit of butter, the size of a walnut, in flour, mix it with a half pint of cream or milk; season it with pepper, salt, and grated nutmeg.”

The Practice of Cookery, 1830

Modern Adaptation

1 pound Jerusalem artichokes*
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 cup cream
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
salt to taste

*Note: Jerusalem artichokes are knobby tubers related to the North American sunflower. Not associated with Jerusalem, the name is probably derived from a corruption of girasole, Italian for sunflower.

1. Wash Jerusalem artichokes and pare if needed. Boil in milk combined with water until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain.

2. Roll butter into flour. Warm cream over low heat. Add butter and flour mixture to cream, whisking to dissolve. Stir until it thickens.

3. Season with pepper, nutmeg, and salt. Add Jerusalem artichokes to sauce and serve.

Yield: 4 servings

 

Gourd Soup

Original Recipe

Should be made of full-grown gourds but not those that have hard skins; slice three or four and put them in a stewpan, with two or three onions, and a good bit of butter; set them over a slow fire till quite tender (be careful not to let them burn); then add two ounces of crust of bread and two quarts of good consomme, season with salt and cayenne pepper; boil ten minutes or a quarter of an hour; skim off all the fat, and pass it through a tamis; then make it quite hot, and serve up with fried bread.

(For “gourds” use small squash or pumpkin. A tamis is a sieve.)

Modern Adaptation

3 onions
4-5 pounds butternut squash
¼ lb. butter
½ loaf of stale, crusty bread
2 quarts either beef or chicken broth
cayenne pepper
salt
additional butter or oil for frying bread

  1. Peel and slice onions. Peel and slice squash.
  2. Melt ¼ lb. butter in largest pot. Saute onions and squash in butter until tender, stirring frequently.
  3. Cover with broth and simmer until squash and onions are very tender. While soup is simmering, grate 1 cup bread crumbs from loaf.
  4. Cut remaining bread into cubes and fry in butter or oil in batches.
  5. Just before serving, press soup through colander or sieve to puree. Thicken with bread crumbs. Add salt and cayenne pepper (careful not to add too much cayenne!) to taste.
  6. Serve with 3-4 pieces of fried bread on top.

This receipt was originally published in 1832 in The Cook’s Own Book (Munroe and Francis, Boston). Modern Adaptation offered by the foodways staff at Old Sturbridge Village.

Lemon Pudding

This receipt was originally published in 1839 in Sarah Josepha Hale’s “The Good Housekeeper”. It has been adapted for the modern cook by Debra L. Friedman, at Old Sturbridge Village, who describes the one-crust pie as “very lemony.”

Original Recipe

Boil in water, in a closely covered sauce-pan, two large lemons till quite tender; take out the seeds, and pound the lemons to a paste; add a quarter of a pound of pounded loaf sugar, the same of fresh butter beaten to a cream, and three well-beaten eggs; mix all together and bake in a tin lined with puff paste; take it out, strew over the top grated loaf sugar.

Modern Adaptation

2 lemons
4 oz. butter
½ cup white sugar
3 eggs
Prepared Pie Crust

  1. In covered saucepan, cover lemons with water and boil until very tender (check water level to insure they are covered).
  2. Remove lemons and cool. Cut in half to remove seeds and mash until whole lemons form a fine puree.
  3. Cream butter and sugar and add to lemon puree.
  4. Beat eggs and add to mixture.
  5. Pour filling into prepared crust. Bake in preheated 350° oven for 35-45 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle with sugar and cool before serving.

Yield: 8 servings

Macaroni (Homemade Noodles)

Original Receipt

Beat four eggs for eight or ten minutes, strain them and stir them in flour till stiff enough to work into a paste upon a marble or stone slab, add flour till it be a stiff paste, and work it well; cut off a small bit at a time, roll it out thin as paper, and cut it with a paste-cutter or knife into very narrow strips; twist and lay them down upon a clean cloth in a dry, warm place; in a few hours it will be perfectly dry and hard; put it into a box with white paper under and over it. It may be cut into small stars or circles to be used for soup and not require so much cooking as the Italian macaroni.

Modern Adaptation

4 eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

  1. Beat eggs. Put flour and salt into bowl and make a well in center of flour. Pour beaten eggs into well in flour and gently mix flour and eggs together, using your fingers. When lightly mixed, turn mixture onto floured board and knead for 10 minutes. (The kneading process may also be done in a food processor).
  2. Divide dough into six pieces. With rolling pin, roll into sheets of desired thickness. Slice with knife into desired width. Twist and place on towel to dry.

Yields 6-8 servings

Taken from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook

Maple Apple Fritters

Original Receipt

Four well-beaten eggs, half a pint of cream, two table spoonfuls of yeast, three of white wine, and two of rose water; half a tea spoonful of grated nutmeg, and of salt; make it into a thick batter with flour, peel and core two or three apples, cut them into thin bits, and mix them with the batter; cover it over, let it stand, placed near the fire, about an hour; drop it into boiling lard, and serve them in a napkin with sugar strewed over them. Gooseberries previously stewed may be done in the same way.

The Cook’s Own Book, Mrs. N.K.M. Lee, 1832

Modern Adaptation

4 eggs
1 cup cream
Prepared yeast (2 tsp. yeast, 1 tbsp. flour, ½ cup water, 1 tsp. sugar; mix and set in a warm place for 15 minutes)
3 tbsp. white wine
2 tbsp. rose water (or  1 tsp. vanilla extract)
½ tsp. grated nutmeg
½ tsp. salt
2 ½ cups flour
4-6 small apples
Lard or vegetable oil for frying (should be 1 ½ to 2 inches deep when hot)

  1. Beat eggs
  2. Mix beaten eggs with cream, yeast, white wine, rose water, nutmeg, and salt.
  3. Make into a thick batter using flour, adding one cup of flour at a time and mixing before adding more flour.
  4. Peel and core apples and cut them into small pieces. Mix piece with batter.
  5. Drop approximately 1/3 cup of batter in oil/melted lard heated between 350°F and 375°F. Fritters should float to the top immediately.
  6. Flip fritters over when golden. Fritters should fry for approximately 2 minutes per side.
  7. Scoop fritters out and place on a towel to absorb excess oil.
  8. Sprinkle with maple sugar to taste.

Marlborough Pudding

One of our most requested recipes is this one for Marlborough Pudding, which is reproduced here for your own enjoyment and taken from Amelia Simmons’ “American Cookery” (1796).

Original Recipe

Take 12 spoons of stewed apples, 12 of wine, 12 of sugar, 12 of melted butter, and 12 of beaten eggs, a little cream, spice to your taste; lay in paste No. 3, in a deep dish; bake one hour and a quarter.

Modern Adaptation

6 tablespoons butter
Juice of 1 lemon
3/4 cup stewed, pureed apples
3/4 cup sherry
1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup white sugar
4 eggs
1/2 recipe for pie crust
2 teaspoon grated nutmeg (or to taste)

  1. Melt butter and set aside to cool.
  2. Squeeze lemon and remove seeds.
  3. Add lemon to stewed apples, sherry, cream, and sugar and mix well.
  4. Add melted butter to mixture, blending well.
  5. Beat eggs and add to mixture.
  6. Prepare pastry and line deep, 8-inch pie plate.
  7. Season with grated nutmeg and spoon mixture into prepared pie plate.
  8. Bake 15 minutes at 400°F. Reduce heat to 350°F and bake 45 minutes more or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool before serving.

 

Yield: one 8-inch deep dish pie

Mince Pies

Mincemeat – commonly thought of as a traditional Thanksgiving dish – actually traces its roots back to medieval times, when preparing meat with fruit and spices was one form of preservation. Early New Englanders would make large batches of mincemeat and store it in crocks sealed with a layer of lard for use over many months. Most modern versions no longer include meat, but here is an early New England “receipt” (or recipe), originally published in Lydia Maria Child’s “American Frugal Housewife” (1832), along with an adaptation for the modern cook, published in the Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995). The recipe yields filling for two pies.

Original Recipe

Boil a tender, nice piece of beef — any piece that is clear from sinew and gristle; boil it till it is perfectly tender. When it is cold, chop it very fine, and be very careful to get out every particle of bone and gristle. The suet is sweeter and better to boil half an hour or more in the liquor the beef has been boiled in; but few people do this. Pare, core, and chop the apples fine. If you use raisins, stone them. If you use currants, wash and dry them at the fire. Two pounds of beef, after it is chopped; three quarters of a pound of suet; one pound and a quarter of sugar; three pounds of apples; two pounds of currants, or raisins. Put in a gill of brandy; lemon-brandy is better, if you have any prepared. Make it quite moist with new cider. I should not think a quart would be too much; the more moist the better, if it does not spill out into the oven. A very little pepper. If you use corn meat, or tongue, for pies, it should be well soaked, and boiled very tender. If you use fresh beef, salt is necessary in the seasoning. One ounce of cinnamon, one ounce of cloves. Two nutmegs add to the pleasantness of the flavor; and a bit of sweet butter put upon the top of each pie, makes them rich; but these are not necessary. Baked three quarters of an hour. If your apples are rather sweet, grate in a whole lemon.

Modern Adaptation

1¼ pounds of beef round or leftover roast
¼ pound suet
1½ pounds apples
1 cup raisins or currants
½ cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon clove
2 teaspoons nutmeg
¼ cup brandy
2 cups cider or apple juice
Double recipe for Pie Crust
1 tablespoon butter (optional)

  1. If uncooked meat is used, simmer beef 2-3 hours or until very tender, adding suet for last ½ hour of cooking.
  2. When cooked, chop beef and suet very fine, into about ¼-inch pieces.
  3. Pare, core, and chop apples to make 3 cups.
  4. Mix beef, suet, apples, raisins or currants, white and brown sugars, spices, brandy, and cider or apple juice.
  5. Prepare pie crust.
  6. Line pie plates with pastry, fill each with half of meat mixture. Cover with top crusts, seal edges, slit holes on top for steam to escape. If desired, spread a thick layer of butter on pastry for flaky upper crust.
  7. Bake ¾ hour in 400°-425° oven.

Yield: two 9-inch pies

Reprinted from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), with permission.

New Years' Cakes

Original Recipe

Take 14 pound flour, to which add one pint milk, and one quart yeast, put these together over night, and let it lie in the sponge till morning, 5 pound sugar and 4 pound butter, dissolve these together, 6 eggs well beat, and carroway seed; put the whole together, and when light bake them in cakes, similar to breakfast biscuit, 20 minutes.

                                     From American Cookery by Amelia Simmons, 1796

Modern Adaptation

6-8 cups of sifted flour
2 cups of milk (warmed, not hot)
1 tsp. (two packages) yeast
1 cup white sugar
8 oz melted butter
2 well-beaten eggs
4 tbsps. caraway seed (or more, to your taste)

  1. Put 4 cups of sifted flour in a bowl. Add warm milk and yeast and blend together. Let sit until yeast froths.
  2. Add sugar and melted butter and mix together thoroughly. Add the beaten eggs and then whisk in another cup of flour to the mix and blend well. Add caraway seeds. Add more flour if necessary to make it a dough.
  3. Gently knead the dough until it pulls away from your hands cleanly. Let it rise in a bowl in a warm place for an hour.
  4. Take the dough and break it up into 3 inch spheres. Place them, flattened, onto a greased baking sheet and put them in an oven at 350ºF for 20-30 minutes until they are golden brown and risen. It is similar to a modern scone. Happy New Years!

Parmesan Ice Cream

Original Receipt

Take six eggs, half pint of syrup, and a pint of cream, put them into a stewpan, and boil them until they begin to thicken; then rasp three ounces of Parmesan cheese, mix the whole well together, and pass it through a sieve; then freeze it according to custom.

From: The Cook’s Dictionary, and Housekeeper’s Directory, by Richard Dolby, 1833

Modern Adaptation

6 eggs beaten
1 cup simple syrup*
2 cups light cream
1/2 cup of freshly grated parmesan (using grated canned parmesan will give less desirable results)

 

  1. Grate 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese.
  2. Beat eggs.
  3. Add 1 cup simple syrup to eggs.
  4. Add egg/cheese/syrup mix to cream.
  5. Cook gently over medium low heat until the custard coats the spoon.
  6. Cool custard,
  7. Strain through a sieve.
  8. Freeze by building layers of 1 inch ice and 1/4 inch rock salt in large bowl. Build layers up around a smaller metal bowl that will hold 2 quarts of liquid.
  9. Scrape down mix as it freezes.
  10. Serve immediately.

*For simple syrup, take two cups granulated sugar and one cup water and bring to a simmer over medium heat until all the sugar is dissolved. Let cool before use.

Taken from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook

Pear Marmalade

Original Receipt

Boil the pear with the skins on. When soft, rub them through a sieve and to each pound of pulp three quarters of a pound of brown sugar. Stew it over a slow fire till it becomes a thick jelly. It should be stirred constantly.

From The American Housewife, [author anonymous], 1841 (3rd edition), New York

Modern Adaptation

1-2 pounds of pairs (about 6 pears)
1 ½ cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon powdered ginger

  1. Take pears, clean, and boil whole until soft.
  2. Cool the pears.
  3. Push them through a wire sieve or ricer.
  4. To every pint (2 cups) of sieved pears, add 1 ½ cups of brown sugar.
  5. Stir well.
  6. Optional: Add 1 teaspoon powdered ginger per 2 cups of pear puree and stir well.
  7. Place mixture in a saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  8. When marmalade slightly sticks on a spoon and does not dissolve in a cup of cold water, place it in a jar. Either use modern canning methods to keep for long term use or place it in the refrigerator for use in the next month or two. It is best eaten on pound cake or home-made bread.

 

Potted Cheese

This receipt was originally published in Maria Eliza Ketelby Rundell’s “A New System of Domestic Cookery” (W. Andrews, Boston: 1807).

Original Recipe

Cut and pound four ounces of Cheshire cheese, one ounce and a half of fine butter, a teaspoonful of white pounded sugar, a little bit of mace, and a glass of white wine. Press it down in a deep pot.

Modern Adaptation

2 cups grated hard cheese (assorted sharp cheese such as cheddar or Romano)
2 ounces butter
2 teaspoons white sugar
1 teaspoon mace
¼ cup white port wine

Using food processor or mixer, combine all ingredients until smooth. Adjust seasoning according to taste.

Modern adaptation offered by Old Sturbridge Village’s Department of Education and Public Programs

Pounded Cheese

Original Recipe

Cut one pound of good mellow Cheddar, Cheshire, or North Wiltshire cheese into thin bits, add to it two and if the Cheese is dry, three ounces of fresh butter, pound and rub them well together in a mortar till it is quite smooth.

Obs.- When cheese is dry, and for those whose digestion is feeble, this is the best way of eating it and spread it on Bread, it makes an excellent Luncheon or Supper.

N.B. The piquance of this buttery, caseous relish, is sometimes increased by pounding with it Curry Powder, Ground Spice, Cayenne Pepper, and a little made mustard; and some moisten it with a glass of Sherry.

If pressed down hard in a jar, and covered with clarified butter, it will keep for several days in cool weather.

Modern Adaptation

2 cups grated cheese (assorted hard, sharp cheese such as cheddar or Romano)
¼ cup butter
2 teaspoons prepared mustard
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon sherry

Using either food processor or mixer, combine all ingredients until smooth. Adjust spice according to taste.

Yield: 1½ cups of spread

Reprinted from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), with permission.

Raspberry Charlotte

Original Recipe

Take a dozen of the square or oblong sponge cakes that are commonly called Naples biscuits. They should be quite fresh. Spread over each a thick layer of raspberry jam and place them in the bottom and round the sides of a glass bowl. Take the whites of six eggs, and mix with them six table-spoonfuls of raspberry or current jelly. Beat the egg and jelly with rods till very light and then fill up the bowl with it. For this purpose, cream (if you can conveniently procure it) is still better than white of egg. You may make a charlotte with any sort of jam, marmalade or fruit jelly. It can be prepared at a short notice, and is very generally liked. You may use ripe strawberries, mashed and sweetened.

n.b. Naples biscuit: large (8” x 3”), thick (1”) sponge cakes or cookies used mainly as a base for nourishing drinks or trifles. In the nineteenth century, small and thin.

Modern Adaptation

1 sponge cake
1 pint fresh strawberries (or raspberries)
1 cup raspberry jelly
2 cups whipping cream
1 cup sugar

  1. Slice strawberries and sprinkle with ½ cup sugar. Mash and set aside.
  2. Add ½ cup sugar to whipping cream. Beat until stiff.
  3. Slice sponge cake into one-inch slices. Spread with raspberry jelly.
  4. Line glass bowl with slice of sponge cake, jellied side facing in. Fold strawberries into whipped cream. Fill cake lined bowl with cream mixture. Chill before serving.

This receipt was originally published in 1851 in Eliza Leslie’s “Directions for Cookery” (Henry Carey Baird, Philadelphia). Modern Adaptation offered by the foodways staff at Old Sturbridge Village

Raspberry Shrub

Original Receipt

Put raspberries in a pan and scarcely cover them with strong vinegar. Add a pint of sugar to a pint of juice; (of this you can judge by first trying your pan to see how much it holds) scald it, skim it, and bottle it when cold.

Taken from The American Frugal Housewife, by Lydia Maria Child, 1833

Modern Adaptation:

2 cups raspberries
1 ½ to 2 cups cider vinegar
sugar (1 cup for every pint of juice)
¼ cup to one quart of water
Optional:  add ½ cup of light rum or liquor of choice for a refreshing cocktail

  1. Take 2 cups of raspberries and cover them in cider vinegar in a sauce pot (until the vinegar reaches to top of the raspberries in the pot)
  2. Simmer over medium heat until raspberries break apart.
  3. Strain the raspberries through a cloth or sieve to collect the juice.
  4. Measure the juice. For every cup of juice, add a cup of sugar. Stir to dissolve.
  5. Bring to a high simmer.
  6. Take off just when bubbles start to form. Cool.
  7. Add ¼ cup mixture to one quart of water.
  8. Optional: Add ½ cup of light rum or liquor of choice for a refreshing cocktail.

 

Roasted Cheese

This receipt, originally published in “Domestic Cookery” (1829), has been adapted for the modern cook and is included in the “Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook” (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), in both original and modern versions

Original Recipe

Grate three ounces of fat cheese, mix it with the yolk of two eggs, four ounces of grated bread and three ounces of butter; beat the whole well in a mortar, with a dessert spoonful of mustard and a little salt and pepper. Toast some bread, cut it in to proper pieces; lay the paste, as above, thick upon them, put them into a Dutch oven covered with a dish, till hot through, remove the dish, and let the cheese brown a little. Serve as hot as possible.

Modern Adaptation

1¼ cups cheddar or other hard cheese
2 hard-boiled egg yolks mashed
2-3 cups soft bread crumbs
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon mustard
Dash of salt and pepper
8 slices lightly toasted bread

  1. Blend cheese, mashed egg yolks, bread crumbs, butter, mustard, salt, and pepper.
  2. Spread paste on toast. Bake in 350º oven covered for 15 minutes. Remove cover for last 5 minutes to brown the cheese.

Yield: 4 servings

Reprinted from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook (Globe Pequot Press, 1995), with permission.

Tunbridge Cakes

Original Receipt

Rub six ounces of butter into a quart of flour; then mix six ounces of sugar into three well beaten eggs, and make the flour into paste, adding a little rose-water and what spices you like. Roll the paste very thin and cut with the top of a glass, prick the cakes with a fork, and cover with caraways, or wash with the white of an egg and dust a little sugar over. Bake on tins in a moderate oven.
The Good Housekeeper, Sarah Josepha Hale, 1839

Modern Adaptation

1 1/2 sticks of butter, softened
4 cups of sifted all-purpose butter
3/4 cup of granulated or grated maple sugar (not maple syrup)
1/4 cup of sugar for sprinkling atop the cakes
3 eggs, well beaten
1 teaspoon rose water (optional)
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (optional)
1 tablespoon caraway seeds (optional)
1 moderately beaten egg white

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a mixer, cream the butter and sugar together.
  2. Add rosewater (if desired) and eggs; blend in until smooth.
  3. Add the sifted flour (and spices if desired) a cup at a time while mixing until the dough has formed. If it is still sticky, add additional sifted flour until it is the consistency of pie crust (firm yet moist, not sticky- it needs to hold together to be rolled out).
  4. Roll out cookie dough to about 1/4 of an inch. Cut cakes out with the lip of a small water glass or your favorite cookie cutter. Lay cookies on a buttered or greased baking sheet. Brush cookies with egg whites and sprinkle with maple sugar or caraway seeds.
  5. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until golden.

Omit the rosewater, spices, and caraway seeds if you want the maple sugar flavor to shine. Maple sugar has a delicate flavor that can be lost with the addition of other flavorings.

Washington Cake

Original Receipt

Beat together 1 1/2 lb. of sugar, and three quarters of pound of butter; add 4 eggs well beaten, half pint of sour milk, and 1 tea-spoonful of saleratus, dissolved in a little hot water. Stir in gradually 1 3/4 lb. of flour, 1 wine glassful of wine or brandy, and 1 nutmeg grated. Beat all well together. This will make two round cakes. It should be baked in a quick oven, and will take from 15 to 30 minutes, according to the thickness of the cakes.From: The Ladies’ New Book of Cookery: Practical System for Private Families in Town and Country by Sarah Josepha Hale. New York: H.Long & Brothers, 1852 Ingredients

Modern Adaptation:

3/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/4 cup wine
2 1/2 – 3 Cups flour, measured after sifting
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 pint buttermilk

  1. Cream the butter and sugar until light.
  2. Beat eggs, add wine. Combine with butter and sugar mixture.
  3. Sift together flour, baking soda, and spices.
  4. Add one-third of the flour mixture and half of the buttermilk then add one-third of the flour mixture and the remaining buttermilk, and then add the remaining flour mixture, blending well after each addition.
  5. Grease two 8-inch round cake pans, pour in the batter, and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or use a tube pan and bake for 70 minutes.

Hearth Method

  1. Follow steps 1-4 in Modern Method recipe.
  2. Pour batter in two 9-inch pottery pie plates or two round, straight-sided oven proof dishes of 8-9 inches in diameter. Bake for 1 1/4 hours in a moderate bake oven.

Yield: two 8-inch or 9-inch layers or one tube cake.

Taken from Old Sturbridge Village Cookbook