Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Historical Food Fortnightly: Challenge #5 Roasts

The Challenge: Roasts
The obvious direction for this challenge was meat, but I wanted to do something different. I've always enjoyed baked apples, and decided to look for roast apple receipts; I found a few, but they weren't much different from a modern recipe.
The Recipe: To Roast Apples Another Way from Practice of Cookery and Pastry, Adapted to the Business of Everyday Life by Mrs. I. Williamson

The Year and Region: 1862, United States

How Did You Make It:
"Take as many baking-apples as you require, and with an apple-corer core them half way through, beginning at the top; then fill the hole thus made with fresh butter and sugar, previously mixed together. While roasting, be sure to keep the top up in order to keep in the butter and sugar. Serve on a table-napkin".

Time to Complete: 5 minutes prep time, 30 minutes in the oven.
Total Cost: All ingredients on hand, approximately less than $2.00.
How successful Was It?
Quite tasty, the butter bastes the apple skin and makes it tender.
How Accurate Is It?
Granny Smith's are definitely not period correct, but were all I had - we haven't been off Island in over a month, and these were the last two apples we had in the frig. I did NOT serve these on a table-napkin.

As roast apples weren't really much of a challenge, I'm doing a "two-fer" again this month.

The Challenge: Roasts #2
The Recipe: To Roast Cheese from "Mrs. Hale's New Cook Book: A Practical System for Private Families in Town and Country with Direction for Carving and Arranging the Table for Parties Etc., also, Preparations of food for Invalids and for Children" by Mrs. Sarah J. Hale

The Year and Region: 1857, United States

How Did You Make It: 
"Mix two ounces grated cheese with the yolk of an egg, two ounces of grated bread, and about an ounce of butter; beat them in a mortar, with mustard, pepper, and salt, to a paste, which spread thickly on toast, and warm and lightly brown in a Dutch oven."

Time to Complete: About ten minutes prep time and 20 minutes in the oven.

Total Cost: Again, everything in the pantry or frig, maybe $1.50 total?

How Successful Was It?: It was...interesting. Not bad, but not what I expected; the paste stayed thick - I had expected it to melt and become saucier. It would make a good light supper or a nursery meal.

How Accurate Is It?: Purchased, sliced bread; I had planned on making bread, but it didn't happen. Not having a mortar, I smashed it all together with a spoon.