Tagged ‘cornmeal’

National Indian Pudding Day

November 13th, 2013 by KM Wall

Sampe Fest wasn’t just about Jonnycakes….

It was also about Indian Pudding. Or as it was sometimes referred to:

Indian-meal Pudding

Samp Fest 2013

Samp Fest 2013

Big Batch Indian Pudding

3 Quarts milk

2 cups cornmeal (Plimoth Grist Mill cornmeal is the best!)

1 jar (12 ounces) molasses (non-sulphered or mild)

1 stick butter (1/4 pound)

6 eggs

4 teaspoons cinnamon

2 tsp ginger

 

 

Butter a large slow cooker and pre-heat on high.

Use a large heavy bottomed pan on the stove (so the milk doesn’t scorch). The milk will rise up when it heats, so give it plenty of room. When the milk is just under a boil (lots of bubbles forming), whisk in the cornmeal; keep stirring until the cornmeal thickens about 10-15 minutes. Add the rest of the butter, turn off the heat and cover the pan.

Beat the eggs with the molasses and the spices.

Add some of the hot corn/milk mixture to temper the eggs and then add that to the rest of the corn mixture. Blend thoroughly. Scrape into the buttered, pre-heat slow cooker.

Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Serve with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream or light cream…..

 

Options:

Raisins, cranberries or chopped apples may be added into the slow cooker, either a little or a lot.

There’s a real divide with the fruit people – they love it or hate it!

 

It’s also good re-heated for breakfast.

 Cinnamon whipped cream is also pretty heavenly….

plimoth grist mill prodcut

 

 

 

Jonnycakes, or what’s in a name

November 6th, 2013 by KM Wall

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Sampe Fest 2013 was a great hit!

Sampe, of course, is course ground corn meal, the best being from Plimoth Grist Mill. Cornmeal, fine ground and course were the backbone of the New England diet in the 17th century, both Wamponoag and English.

Jonnycakes were at one time common all along the Eastern seaboard, and even into the Carribean. They look like pancakes, but they act like bread.

They start with fresh ground whole corn meal…..after this. the variations/disagreements begin…

In Rhode Island, the last bastion and fiercest defender/supporter state for the jonnycake they insist on Flint Corn and flint corn alone. Flint corn is one of several varieties of corn – Zea mays indurata – and was the commonest kind of corn grown in New England until the 1930′s.

200px-Corncobs

Flint corn is now either yellow or white….although the mufti-colored corn was not uncommon in 17th century New England

Now, with the freshly ground corn, you have to choose- water or milk as the liquid. Either is right and either is wrong.

Sigh.

I picked water.

The real secret is that it is HOT milk or boiling water. It really does react with the cornmeal and improves the whole process.

 

 

Corn meal and boiling water

Corn meal and boiling water…

Start with 1 cup corn meal to 1 – 1 1/2 cups boiling water. Add a pinch of salt. Some will add a little sugar, and arguments will ensue. Mix well.

 

Bacon drippings....

Bacon drippings….

Now – to bake or to fry? According to one source, proper jonnycake is baked in front of an open fire on the center  red oak plank of a flour barrel…..or fried in a pan, with either butter or bacon drippings. For Saturdays demonstration I used bacon drippings.

Cast iron skillet - well seasoned it's non-stick with the nonstick surface issues

Cast iron skillet – well seasoned it’s non-stick with the nonstick surface issues

 

A cast iron pan is best, because you want it hot. According to some sources the proper size for a proper Rhode Island jonnycake is “3″x3″x1/2″ in size” – I didn’t measure mine…..and they were probably too thin.

The first recipe for jonnycakes shows up in Amelia Simmons American Cookery of 1796 . She is from Connecticut and not Rhode Island. Then she moves to New York, which is also not Rhode Island. :

Johny Cake, or Hoe Cake

Scald 1 pint of milk and put to 3 pints of indian meal, and half pint of flower — bake before the fire. Or scald with milk two thirds of the indian meal, or wet two thirds with boiling water, and salt, molasses and shortening, work up with cold water pretty stiff, and bake as above.

1796. Amelia Simmons. American Cookery. Hartford (Dover reprint edition) p. 34.

SOOOO – who is Jonny (however you might spell his name) and how does he rate his own cake?

There are several theories……

Jonny is short for journey….or Jonakin or jannock…and who has mentioned  jannock before?????

Why, none other then our dear friend Gervase Markham!

Chapter VII

The excellency of oats, and the many singular virtues and uses of them in a family

The virtues of oatmeal.

…..:also with this small oatmeal is made in divers* countries six several kinds of very good and wholesome bread, every one finer than other , as your annacks, janacks, and such like. Also there is made of it both thick and thin oaten cakes, which are very pleasant in taste, and much esteemed: but if it be mixed with a fine wheat meal, then it maketh a most delicate and dainty oatcake, either thick or thin, such as no prince in the world but may have served to his table;…

1631. Gervase Markham. The English Housewife. Michael Best, ed. p. 202.

* divers in this instance means diverse, not

Llyod Bridges, Sea Hunt

Lloyd Bridges, Sea Hunt

 

 

Flip and keep cooking. They take their own sweet time. These are NOT pancakes.

Flip and keep cooking. They take their own sweet time. These are NOT pancakes.

 

And how do you serve them ?  Hot,  hot, hot. Some  say with butter and maple syrup. Some say with butter and honey. Some say you can’t eat them cold …..but I have, with cranberry sauce, and I’m none the worse for it.

They smell and taste better then I’m able to make them look.

-  Yaniqueques  (sound it out...) from the Dominican Republic

– Yaniqueques (sound it out…) from the Dominican Republic

I met people from Maine who were fond of jonnycakes, and people from Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, as well as one woman from Bermuda….in the South they call them hoe-cakes ( a hoe being a kind of a pan, not the garden instrument).

plimoth grist mill prodcut

Where there’s a MILL there’s a way!

National Indian Pudding Day

November 12th, 2012 by KM Wall

It’s that time again… Check out our Indian Pudding recipe in  Yankee Magazine!

There’s also a brand-new video that Comcast Get Local is airing on the Get Local station! We will post it when we get our very own copy. Until then, make sure you check your Get Local Comcast listings to see it!

Two New England Bread Accounts

April 26th, 2012 by KM Wall

Wintrop, John. July 29, 1662. Letter to Robert Boyle. published Philosophical Transactions, 142 (1678), 1065-1069. reproduced in John Wintrop ,Jr. on Indian Corn. Fulmer Mood, The New England Quarterly. Vol. X, number 1. March, 1937.p.129.
“The English make very good Breade of Meale, or flower of it being Ground in Mills, as other Corne, but to make good bread of it there is a different way of ordering of it, from what it is used about the Bread of other Graine, for if it be mixed into stiff past, it will not be good as when it is made into a thinner mixture a little stiffer then the Battar for Pancakes, or puddings, and then baked in a very hott oven, standing all day or all Night therein, therefore some used to bake it in pans like puddings. But the most ordinary way is this, the Oven being very hott they may have a great Wooden dish fastened to a long staff, which may hold the quantity of a Pottle, and that being filled, they empty it on an heape in the Oven, upon the bare floore thereof cleane Swept, and so fill the Oven, and usually lay a second laying upon the top of the first, because the first will (p130) otherwise be too thinn for the proportion of a Loafe because it will spread in the oven at the first pouring of it in: if they make it not too thinn it will ly in distance like Loaves, onely in some parts where they touch one another will stick together but are easily parted but some will fill the whole floore of the Oven as one intire Body and must cut it out in greate pieces; In just such manner handled it wilbe (if baked enough) of a good darke yellow Colour, but otherwise white which is not so wholesome nor pleasant, as when well baked of a deeper Colour. There is also very good Bread made of it, by mixing half, or a third parte, more or less of Ry or Wheate-Meale, or Flower amongst it, and then they make it up into Loaves, adding Leaven or yeast to it to make it Rise, which may also be added to that other thinner sorte beforementioned.”

 

Josslyn, John. New Englands Rarities. 1672. Mass. Historical Society, 1972, p. 52.

“It [maize] is light of digestion, and the English make a kind of Loblolly of it, to eat with Milk, which they call Sampe ; they beat it in a Morter, and sift the flower out of it; the remainder they call Homminey, which they put in a Pot of two or three Gallons, with Water, and boyl it upon a gentle Fire till it be like Hasty Pudden; they put of this into Milk, and so eat it. Their Bread also they make of the Homminey so boiled, and mix their Flower with it, cast it into a deep Bason in which they form the loaf, and then turn it out upon the Peel, and presently put it into the Oven before it spreads abroad; the Flower makes excellent Puddens.”

 

 

Multi-colored Indian corn - amazing maize

Hasty pudding......

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

add the flour......

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

well baked of a deeper color.....

 

Eat Like A Pilgrim: Indian Pudding

April 17th, 2012 by KM Wall

INDIAN PUDDING
(recipe from The Plimoth Plantation New England Cookery Book by Malabar Hornblower, The Harvard Common Press, 1990)

This is a true regional New England dish. The first written version of this recipe does not appear until 1796 in the first American cookbook, but there were references to it as a common dish years earlier. John Jossyln refers to the corn meal and milk portion as hasty pudding in 1672, and the addition of molasses as a sweetener isn’t far behind.
BTW, the ‘Indian’ in the Indian Pudding identifies the grain used – cornmeal or Indian meal.

4 cups milk
2/3 cup molasses
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup yellow cornmeal
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon salt

2 cups milk

optional — cream, whipped cream or ice cream when serving

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Generously butter a 2-quart baking dish.

In a large saucepan, heat the milk molasses and butter, stirring to blend them. Over moderate heat, bring them slowly to just under a boil, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, combine the cornmeal, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt and sift them into a bowl. When the milk and molasses are close to– but not quite—boiling, gradually stir in the cornmeal mixture. Cook mixing constantly so that no lumps form, until the pudding thickens enough to hold its shape when stirred.
With a rubber spatula, scrape the pudding into the buttered baking. Add the 2 cups milk, but do not mix it in; let it float on the top. Bake the pudding 1 hour without stirring. Then stir in the milk and bake two hours longer,

Serve the pudding with cream, whipped cream or vanilla ice cream if desired.

 

XXX

Happy National Indian Pudding Day!

November 13th, 2011 by Carolyn

Indian Pudding is a New England regional dish, which we do not see in a written form until 1796, but there is information that the dish was popular in New England long before it appears in cookbooks. This version of Indian Pudding, by Kathleen Wall, contains two staple ingredients found in New England – cornmeal and molasses, which was often baked or boiled for hours. No worries though, this recipe uses a slow cooker instead.

 

 

Indian-Meal Pudding

Ingredients:

3 cups milk

1/2 cup cornmeal

1/2 tsp salt

2+ tbl butter

2 eggs

1/3 cup molasses

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ginger

Optional: 1/2 cup dried cranberries

 

Butter the inside of slow cooker and preheat on high for 15 minutes.

 

 

Whisk milk, cornmeal, and salt in a large heavy bottomed pan and bring to a  boil. (It will rise up somewhat as it heats, so give yourself lots of unless you like  cleaning up scorched milk off your stovetop.) After it comes to a boil, continue  whisking for another 5 minutes.

 

 

Cover and simmer on low for 10 minutes and then take off the burner. Add the butter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Combine the eggs, molasses and spices. Take some of the hot cornmeal mixture and temper the egg mixture, combine both in to the pot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Stir in the cranberries as this point if you would like. You can also top this with  plastic wrap, cool and refrigerate for up to 24 hours, and then continue at this point.) Scrape final mixture into the buttered slow cooker and cook on high for  2-3 hours or on low for 6-8.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The finished pudding will be firm around the edges than the center. Serve warm with ice cream, whipped cream or light cream. Leftovers make a great breakfast.

Enjoy!

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