Civil War recipes include such delectable (I'm sure they sound good to somebody, at least!) sounding recipes like Hardtack, Coffee Syrup, Fried eels and Lettuce Soup. If you are looking for original Civil War recipes, you'll find some great ones below!
Confederate soldiers in the Civil War were often short on rations, due in part to the blockade of the southern ports that President Abraham Lincoln had ordered shortly after the fall of Fort Sumter and these blockades remained in affect for the duration of the war. Food, and the lack thereof, played a role in the outcome of the war.
Paraphrased from: Civil War Recipes: Receipts from the Pages of Godey's Lady's Book
Please Note: I have purposely not corrected the spelling or grammar in these recipes. I wanted to pass on the original spelling and grammar. I think that's what makes these recipes so fun to read!
Use one part water to six parts flour. Roll dough flat and score into cracker shapes. Bake 20-25 minutes and cool off until completely dry before storing in canisters. The crackers should be hard as bricks and indestructibly unappetizing. If not consumed by hungry soldiers, the crackers might last at least until the Lord returns!
Unappetizing, for sure!
The following two Civil War recipes are from The Housekeeper's Encyclopedia of Useful Information for the Housekeeper in All Branches of Cooking and Domestic Economy by Mrs. E. F. Haskell
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Select tomatoes not overripe, skin and strain the tomatoes; to every gallon add three table-spoons of salt, three of ground black pepper, three of mustard, and one teaspoon of ground allspice; mix the spices in a part of the tomato, and strain them through a sieve; put in a small bag four large pods of sweet peppers and, if relished, one onion, and boil them with the catsup while it is being reduced; add the expressed juice of one quart of horseradish, and reduce it until it is of the proper consistency to pour from the bottles without difficulty; let the catsup remain in the bottles, with a piece of cotton cloth tied loosely on the neck, for three months to ripen, when cork and seal tightly.
...A lot of work, but it might be pretty tasty!
Rub some of the sugar on the peel of the lemon to extract the oil; roll the lemons under the hand on the table, and press out all the juice; add to every lemon two heaping table-spoons of loaf-sugar; mix it thoroughly with the lemon; fill the pitcher one-quarter full of broken ice, and add water.
...Sounds like a perfect drink for a hot afternoon!
The Civil War Recipes Below Were Found in Civil War Recipes: Receipts from the Pages of Godey's Lady's Book
One ounce of pearl barley, half an ounce of white sugar and the rind of a lemon; put it into a jug. Pour upon it one quart of boiling water, and let it stand for eight or ten hours; then strain off the liquor, adding a slice of lemon, if desirable. This infusion makes a most delicious and nutritious beverage, and will be grateful to person who cannot drink the horrid decoction usually given. It is an admirable basis for lemonade, negus* or weak punch, a glass of rum being the proportion for a quart.
Think I'll stick to lemonade!!
Cut up the white parts of two or four lettuces as needed, a quart of stock, free from fat, and boiling; into this throw the lettuces and a small onion, chopped very fine, and a teaspoonful of salt; let it boil twenty minutes; thicken with two tablespoons of flour, first rubbed smoothly in cold water, and a little soup added to it, then strained before putting it to the soup, then throw in a small bit of butter not larger than a walnut; let the whole boil up once, and serve.
Whew!...now that's a run-on sentence if I ever saw one!
Cut the liver and lights into pieces, and stew them in four quarts of water, with some onion, carrots, and turnips; half a pound of pearl barley, pepper and salt, cloves, a little marjoram, parsley, and thyme. Stew all these until nearly sufficiently cooked, then put in the head, and boil it until quite tender. Take it out, and strain everything from the liquor, and let it stand until cold, then remove the fat from the top. Before serving it must be thickened with flour and butter, as though it were mock turtle. A wine glassful of sherry should be put into the tureen before the soup is poured in. The heart cut into small pieces with rump steak makes an excellent pudding.
I think I'd prefer chocolate pudding!
Clean and skin the eels; if large, cut them into pieces; if small, skewer them round and fry them whole. First dust them over with the yelk of egg and sprinkle them with bread crums. Put them into boiling lard and fry until nicely browned.
Yuck..... that's all I'm sayin'...
Fact: Eels were so commonly used in the
American Northeast that in the 1830s
New Englanders were nicknamed “Eels".
Wash and peel some potatoes, then pare them, ribbon like, into long lengths; put them into cold water to remove the strong potato flavor; drain them, and throw them into a pan with a little butter, and fry them a light brown. Take them out of the pan, and place them close to the fire on a sieve lined with clean writing paper to dry, before they are served up. A little salt may be sprinkled over them.
*This recipe marks one of the earliest appearances in print of potato chips
I'll take a bag, please!
If you enjoyed reading these recipes, you're sure to love my new ebook titled "Civil War Era Recipes"! Now available exclusively on Amazon! There are some really great recipes included, as well as some really bizarre ones! All of them are so much fun to read.
Each recipe in the book came from original era recipe books. All of the spellings and grammar have been left as is. Each recipe includes the source information from the recipe book that it came from.
If you are interested in Civil War reenactments and events, please visit our Civil War Reenactments page. You can add your event to our FREE directory there!