New Series: Menu of the Week
“The table not only abundantly, but handsomely provided; good soups, flesh, fish, and vegetables, well cooked-dessert and excellent wines of various kinds…”
From April through October, guests to Montpelier have the opportunity to visit three experiential venues around the site: the Gilmore Cabin—a freedman’s farm, the Hands-On Tool Tent, and the Demonstration Kitchen Tent. The focus of this post, and future posts, will be to highlight a selection of Madison-era recipes prepared in our Kitchen Tent.
“I did not offer you a copy of the first edition of my Cookery book because it was exceedingly defective. The second is more correct and I have the pleasure of asking you to accept one. I shall be much flattered to know that you think it not intirely [sic] without merit”
-Mary Randolph to James Madison, March 17, 1825
To what extent Mary Randolph’s book was used is unknown to us, but we do know a copy was floating around somewhere at Montpelier.
Menu of the Week
Check back weekly to find out the “Menu of the Week,” and other Montpelier food related topics.
The first menu:
Put into a stewpan a little butter and flour; add mushrooms, parsley, and shallots cut small, dilute these with equal quantities of stock, and red or white wine. When the sauce is well boiled, skim it; cut a roasted fowl in pieces, and put it into this sauce; stew it gently for a quarter of an hour. Add some gherkins cut in thin slices.
Source: The Cook’s Own Book: Being a Complete Culinary Encyclopedia. By a Boston Housekeeper (Mrs. NKM Lee), 1832.
“The vegetable kingdom affords no food more wholesome, more easily procured, easily prepared, or less expensive, than the potato…” –William Kitchiner
POTATO PIE—(No. 115).
Peel and slice your potatoes very thin into a pie-dish; between each layer of potatoes put a little chopped onion (three quarters of an ounce of onion is sufficient for a pound of potatoes); between each layer sprinkle a little pepper and salt; put in a little water, and cut about two ounces of fresh butter into little bits, and lay them on the top; cover it close with puff paste. It will take about an hour and a half to bake it.
Source: The Cook’s Oracle; and Housekeeper’s Manual. By William Kitchiner, M.D., 1830.
No. 88. CARROT PUDDING
A coffee cup full of boiled and strained carrots, five eggs, sugar and butter of each two ounces, cinnamon and rose water to your taste, bake in a deep dish without paste, one hour.
Source: The Cook Not Mad, or Rational Cookery. Author unknown, published in Watertown, NY 1831.
Six whites of eggs.
Put the jelly and white of egg into a pan, and beat it together with a whisk, till it becomes a stiff froth, and stands alone.
Have ready the cream, in a broad shallow dish. Just before you send it to the table, pile up the froth in the centre of the cream.
Source: Seventy-Fife Receipts, for Pastry, Cakes, and Sweetmeats. By a Lady of Philadelphia (Eliza Leslie), 1828.
Potato Pie-- (No. 115).
No. 88. Carrot Pudding