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Recipes Shared on Bertie County Mailing List

Old Carolina Tobacco Country Cookbook From the Great Depression to World War II
Distributed by A TASTE OF CAROLINA
At Cotton Patch Landing
PO Box100
Blounts Creek NC 27817
Copyright 1985 Arlene Crisp Aaseby

From Beth
Corn Fritters
2 cups fresh corn cut from cob
2 eggs
About 1/2 c. milk
About 1/4 c. sugar
About 1 c. self-rising flour

Mix all ingredients together. Can add more flour or milk if needed. Heat iron skillet. Add about an inch of oil. When oil is good and hot, spoon batter into pan to make small pancakes, turning once after brown on bottom.

Scrambled Eggs and Herring Roe
Herring Roe

Poach the roe for about 15 mins. Drain. Remove any membranes. Break up in pieces. Beat eggs with a fork, stir in some cream, salt, pepper, and roe. Scramble in butter to desired consistency.

Rutababa and Apples
About 3 cups cut up rutabaga
About 1 cup apples, sliced
Brown Sugar
Parboil rutabaga. Place half the rutabaga and apples in a greased casserole dish, dot with butter, sprinkle with brown sugar.
Repeat with other half of ingredients. Bake at 350 for 30 to 45 minutes.

Fresh Tomatoes with Vinegar and Sugar Fresh tomatoes
Cut up tomatoes and place in serving bowl. Sprinkle with sugar. Add about 1/4 c. vinegar and a little water to dilute. Let set. Good with cucumbers and spring onions added too.

Country Style Steak with Gravy Round Steak
Cut round steak into serving pieces. Beat flour into meat with a saucer. Brown meat in hot oil in iron skillet till very brown on bottom. Turn over and brown other side. Make sure the meat is very brown on both sides. Cover with water. Put lid on pan and simmer for a couple of hours.

Scalloped Oysters 1 pint oysters with their liquor
2 cups oyster crackers
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup half and half
1/4 cup oyster liquor
salt, pepper to taste
Drain oysters, reserving liquor. Mix crackers with melted butter and place 1/3 in bottom of a greased baking dish. Cover with half the oysters. Sprinkle oysters with pepper. Add another layer of crackers and place remaining oysters on top. Sprinkle with more pepper. Combine cream and oyster liquor, salt. Pour over oysters. Top with final layer of crackers. Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes.

Collards cooked with New Potatoes and Backbone
Cut backbone into several pieces. Parboil in large soup pot. Remove backbone from pot. Bring the liquid to boil. Add washed collards to boiling water. Place backbone on top of collards. Cover and cook about 2 hours. About 30 to 45 minutes before done add new potatoes. Potatoes will cook faster it you put them in the liquid. Season with salt and pepper.

Persimmon Pudding
About 2 cups ripe persimmon pulp. 3 cups milk 1 1/2 to 2 cups sugar 2 eggs 2 cups flour 1 teaspoon baking power 1 teaspoon baking soda Vanilla Extract Cinnamon
In a large bowl, combine the pulp, milk, sugar, eggs, flour, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla extract, and cinnamon until well mixed. Pour the mixture into an ungreased 9 by 13 inch baking pan and bake for about an hour or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Best served warm with whipped cream.
Separating seeds and peel from pulp: My mother had a metal sieve or strainer with a wooden pestle she used for this. I just use a colander and wooden spoon.

Tomato Pudding

Delores Forehand's Tomato Pudding
1 16 oz. can sliced tomatoes
1/2 to 1 cup white sugar (or use both white and brown sugar)
3 slices bread, broken (white, whole wheat or even use 1 slice of
     cinnamon bread in combination with white or whole wheat)
1/2 stick butter or margarine (or use liquid margarine)

In a bowl, stir all ingredients together and add cinnamon to taste. Put in a buttered Pyrex Baking & Microwave dish, adding 1/4 stick (in broken pieces) of butter to the top. (add remaining butter as pudding cooks.)
Bake 30-35 minutes at 350 degrees or 15 minutes on high in microwave. (If using the microwave, stir often.)
Jeanette White
Tomato Pudding

1 large can crushed tomatoes
1/2 stick margarine
1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 tube saltine crackers, crushed

Heat tomatoes, add butter, sugar and crushed crackers. Mix and pour into greased baking dish. Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes or until it starts to brown..
Note: You can add cinnamon if you like, I prefer it plain. You can substitute broken bits of stale bread or biscuits instead of crackers, which is the way my mother made it.
I grew up in Bertie and my mother used to make this (which I wouldn't eat as a kid but my dad loved it). I called my sister and the following is what she told me, keeping in mind however that my mother never measured anything and I am sure there must be other versions:

She preferred a cast iron skillet, but I guess you can used something else. Ingredients - One large can of crushed tomatoes (1 lb.,12 oz. size), 1/2 to 1 cup of crushed saltine crackers (my mother often used crumbled up cold biscuits), salt and pepper, 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sugar (my dad always added more when he ate it), and a dash of cinnamon. Heat the pan on top of the stove with a little bacon grease or olive oil in the bottom of the pan, but don't let it get too hot. Add the tomatoes. Salt and pepper to taste. Add the sugar and then mix well. Add the bread crumbs or cracker crumbs. Add a dash or two of cinnamon. Stir well. Bring to a simmer. Stir often and cook down to a pudding consistency. Enjoy.

Gerald Byrd
Don't know if this is the one you're talking about but this is my grandmother's recipe and this is a very old one. First of all, she wasted nothing so she used stale or hard biscuits crumbled up. I use slightly old regular bread and sometimes also crumble up crackers. I use about a quart of little less. (My grandmother never followed recipe amounts.) I mix the tomatoes and the bread crumbled or crackers. Then I add just a tad of vinegar (more or less to taste). Salt and pepper and add about a half cup or so of sugar. After all this has been mixed and seasoned according to taste, I put this in a casserole dish and bake at 325 degrees until the sides begin to seperate and the top is baked darker or thickened enough.(Usually about an hour.)
Sorry, the recipe is so ill-defined but it is one of those things that you fix until you get it right or your taste or family's. But I've been fixing this for years. Some people confuse stewed tomatos with tomato pudding and they're not the same.
Beth Wienberry Dix
Well, I don't have a recipe exactly....just in my head. I just put peeled tomatoes cut in wedges in my iron skillet with butter, flour, and sugar and stew them. As it cooks, you can gradually get the lumps out of the tomatoes. You may need to add a little water, but if you use store bought canned tomatoes you should have enough juice.
I like to break up pieces of cornbread and put the tomatoes on top....great with a cup of pot liquor:)

Tomatoes - Blackeyed Peas

I don't cook these days, one of the signs of aging I guess. But, my husband liked breaded tomatoes and black eyed peas or crowder peas.
Mine were a big can of tomatoes dumped in the frying pan, and boiled and "de-lumped" into small chunks as possible. Pull apart and shred slices of bread and stir into the tomatoes. A little sugar, but not too sweet, since we don't like really sweet vegetables. Can't mess up.
Dump your black eyed peas on a plate, then your chopped onions on top of that, and finally pull out a circle in the middle and dump your breaded tomatoes in the middle. He didn't want anything else to eat, was satisfied with all he could eat of this.
Faye Hays

Cracklin' Corn Bread

Crackling bread brought back fond memories that was a pure gift of love that came from experiences that was passed down to me from my Grandma “Miss” Kate Lyon .

For over 30 years my grandmother Catherine Drake Dozier Lyon lived as a member one of our family after she had the misfortune of losing Grandpa Lewis Lunsford Lyon. As my assigned roommate doing my younger youth she added so many fond memories of her devoted love about her family history. You much know Miss Kate was a living encyclopedia of our family and friends genealogy. If only I had taken the time to record all this wonderful family history by Grandma but she was two steps ahead of me because she had it in a safe place a manuscript with everything written in her own hand writing that we later located with her important papers. I have the original notes of her memories with complete bible records of five generation of my ancestors. What a gift of love this was. Also included were the names, dates of important events for all the slave family members. I presented a copy to the public Library in Tarboro, Edgecombe Co NC because it was the county of her birth.

At night I could hardly wait until bedtime. This meant story time with Grandma. What exciting adventures transpired when we were together as we snuggle between the sheets in her goose down feather mattress? No matter how hard I tried there was no way Grandma would allow the Tar Baby to keep Peter Rabbit a captive for Bro fox. The brier patch was far too thick to keep Peter from making his dramatic escape. Her stories were endless with a new tale every night. During many winter nights I would be treated with a heated brick wrapped in a hand towel which she placed under the covers next to my ice cold toes.

Grandma was the family culinary pastry chief. In other words she was the bread maker as she prepared and served all the homemade bread or substituted bread items for all our meals. Buttered toast with home made jams or jelly and on Sunday morning corn flakes and homemade loaf bread toast with melted cheese. She took great pride in making from scratch, buttermilk biscuits, cheese biscuits, left over toasted split biscuits, toasted split biscuits with melted cheese topping, spoon drop biscuit, cornbread, skillet litebread, egg bread, A oven baked sausage, loaf bread and egg casserole, skillet flour bread, pan fried cornbread cakes, potato cakes, deep fat fried hush puppies, pan cakes, wafers cooked in a cast iron duel stovetop waffle iron, Oyster fritters when is season, assorted cookies and three layer oven baked cakes and square baking pan oven baked single or layer cakes of all kinds. It was necessary to dissolve and preheat the yeast to make the batter too rise for the needed loft in the cake layers. Miss Kate also prepared grits, oatmeal, and cream of wheat, rice pudding or harmony.

Crackling skillet Bread and oven baked sweet potato biscuits were two of grandma’s famous treats she prepared for me which I enjoyed very much. At times she would hand make me a miniature snake or turtle biscuits out of any left over biscuit dough which I always waited until the last bite to eat with a generous serving of melted home made butter along with a tall glass of whole milk, chocolate milk or Postum the drink promoted by Buck Rogers the All American hero.

For Sunday’s mid day dinner she always had my very special home made from scratch yeast rolls that were out of this world. The aroma they produced while cooking would certainly peak your appetite. You could smelled there presence the moment you opened the back door when returning from Sunday school and Church service. Preparation started very early in the morning when the dough was prepared and mixed together with a melted cake of active yeast and placed in a large bowl. After a couple of hours it would be almost over the rim. Once more the dough is reworked and placed back into the bowl and left it rise a second time. Next step was to spread and flatten the dough and roll it out into a layer on- half inch thick which is now cut out with a biscuit cutter that is now placed in a greased pan and set out to rise again. Now the pan of rolls is popped into a hot over and baked until they are a light tan color making them ready to be served at the dinner table while they are steaming hot. The loftiness, texture and strong yeast flavor was superb too your taste buds. Marie Jones who was my mother’s kitchen assistant was always ready to serve seconds because she knew the first serving would disappear in a flash.


Let’s skip back in time and explore the making of cracklings. Other members of the NCBERTIE subscriber’s network have already emails and explained in detail the process used to render lard but no mention has been made about the final step in the making of firmly pressed crackling pallets cakes.

The final stage takes place when the hot and pre-drained cooked to a medium brown color cracklings are placed in a cast iron press that has a screw worm rod secured dead center above with a 12 inch disc attached that is rotated clockwise making the press plate to move downward while squeezing the remaining white lard from the previously fried cracklings. You needed to crank the overhead parallel wheel until the press was all the way down too the bottom and the cracklings are packed together almost air tight. I and my brothers would take turns cranking the press wheel. Once we had declared we had hit rock bottom James Louis or Irving Douglas “Bro” Austin would try with all their might to squeeze out one more drop. Sometimes they did but mostly I usually won. Mainly, the reason I did win was because my father Hobart Garrett would not fill the press as full when it was my turn as he would for my older brothers. After a cake of solidly packed crackling is removed from the press they were placed in a tin metal lard stand for storage and for later consumption. The lard stands had tight fitting lids that were used to seal and store fried-out pork chops and stuffed link sausage that had been submerged in the cans and covered to the top with the white lard to be saved for a later meal. In cool weather the prepared stored pork would be preserved for about four months or they could become rancid. My mother would dip out chops or sausage and warm it in a hot skillet before placing them on the table. “We now had a fast food operation”. As we had no freezer this was the best way to have fresh tasting pork months after hog killing time. All other pork or beef parts were salt cured and smoked for protect from spoiling. We would have cured country ham, shoulder, siding for bacon, backbone, Canadian bacon, hog jowls, stuffed link sausage, dandoole which was all hung up to be cured after being packed in salt and them washed in a wash tub of hot water and after drying it was basted with black pepper, molasses, brown sugar, salt peter and boric acid (the last two used for skipper control) and hung up and smoked for five days and allowed to absorb the smoke taste made from apple wood coals. As a teen age I was given the job of stoking the fire ever six hours when my daddy was not at home and my brothers has gone off to college..

After getting home from a day in high school I would break off a hunk of cracklings from one of the cake pallets for a quick pick-em up snack.

Another special service my Grandmother did was the production of Lye Soap from lard. After she had cooked out her soap mixture of now tan colored creation that was made in our large black cast iron pot she would let it cool and set before cutting it into four inch square blocks and stored in a dry place. This soap was used for washing clothes, linens, etc using this same pot on Monday wash day. A cube of lye soap was dropped into the boiling water before adding the clothes to be washed. A penny match box size piece of Lye Soap was also given to our dogs to control worms and parasites twice yearly. A good bath for the dogs with this same soap also controlled fees and ticks. Whenever we went blackberry or Chinkapin hunting we always rubbed our legs and arms with a cube of Lye Soap to prevent musketeer and red bug bites. It never failed to do the job but you better be sure and not eat the hand picked berries until you cleaned you hands first.

Grandmother was active until only a few months before she took ill. Two month before her death she baked her own birthday cake but she needed a little help from her daughter Martha Helen Lyon Austin to cook the pineapple icing. Grandma was not run over by a reindeer but Rudolph, if had tried I’m sure he would have been left with two black eyes because she would have wracked him with her ever present flashlight and walking cane. All of grandma’s vital organs gave out at the same time and she only lasted a few days after she became bed ridden. She had outlived all her buddies with whom she would visit daily to chat and exchange any spicy gossips. It was my responsibility to head-up the grandma posy and go fetch and inform her it was bed time and time to come home. She always remark, “My how time flies. I had no idea it was so late”. On the way back to the house she would stop me and bring me up to date on the latest hot gossip items and close by reminding me not to tell it to anyone as it was a secrete between us two. Yes! I still travel down Memory Lane and I do stop by the roadside to sniff the flowers.

After each of you have had your fling at being foot loose and fancy free take a little time to stop and enjoy the rewards of having found and written fond family memories about your love ones if it be about the past or present. Remember we only pass this way just once “so make the best of it” during your visit here on our good earth.
Pete Austin 08/21/09

Hoe Cakes

There are two kinds [of hoe cakes], a lacy one made from corn meal and cold water with a tad bit of salt.
The second is the traveling kind that can be made on a hoe, rock or even in fire ash if need be. They traveled well for days for the soldier of old. Ingredients for any type of hoe cake are nothing more then corn meal, salt and water. The later of the two I described above is heavier and the meal is mixed with boiling water so it can be formed in the hand.
The lacy ones uses cold water and can be poured onto the skillet. They do not use leavening in either. The first of the two is lacy and crisp while the later is heavier and about a 1/4 inch thick.
The authentic later of the two is heavy and takes a bit of getting used to but was great for travel a few generations ago. My Granny and Great Aunt never did measure so it's done by eye in my house but I can hunt up a recipe if anyone is interested; though the second of the two will have to wait until I make a batch and measure out what I use.

For those who wanted my recipe......I finally made some yesterday. Mind you I was cooking for two so I make a small amount. You can double this but try a small amount first because they are quite primitive and take some getting used to.

1 cup of white cornmeal    
1 cup boiling water
salt to taste and it does need it. 
I add the water to the meal though some add the meal to the water. I whisk and let sit for almost an hour. There is no gluten in this as there would be in bread dough so the boiling water is a must. After waiting the prescribed time you just put your hand in the bowl and knead a little. It will feel different from bread dough and is less likely to stay together.
Then you take a gob in your hand and make a patty about 3 to 4 inches. I cook mine on a hoe cake griddle from my Granny in a bit of corn oil though she used bacon grease. You turn them when they get golden.
When we used to go camping I would find a rock to put in the fire and you can lay them on that to cook or you can cook them in the hot ash. The later needs to be dusted off and isn't something some folks would like. The ones I fry on the griddle tend to hold some moisture on the inside. Cooking on a rock tends to dry them out a bit better. Yes, they can also be cooked on a hoe blade pushed into the hot coals. I will say they take getting used to compared to the other method I mentioned. If you don't like them after all this they can be used as hockey pucks. I like to put one on my plate with a generous ladle of field peas over the top. My husband likes his on the side so it will stay crisp.
In the South you can get Arnet's cornmeal or Dixie Lilly. Up here in NJ we can get white cornmeal but it's a little bit coarser. Mind you these are heavy and primitive but for the soldier of old, they traveled well. I can account for 5 generations of my family making them this way and who knows how far back beyond that from NC to GA and now NJ of all places. I will post the cold water fried hoe cake which will probably be more to your liking in a minute.

Lacy Hoe Cakes

1 cup white cornmeal
1 cup plus a little more water........about 1 1/4 cup
salt to taste
The water does not have to be hot for this kind. You just mix it together and let sit for about 10 minutes. It will be like a slurry and you will have to stir with each one you pour out. You have to use a flat hoe cake skillet......without sides. I use about 1/8 inch of corn oil and stir and ladle out onto the not too hot skillet. The batter will spatter and spit and make lace as it runs across the surface. That is what you want. When the edges are golden, you can turn it.
You don't want these thick at all but full of holes just like lace. You can turn them out on a plate and flip over but given the amount of oil, I find this to be very messy. I have two wooden flippers and I put one under and the other over and flip them that way. Then when golden and crisp, I remove to paper towels. The above amount is what I worked out for my 82 year old mother to make for herself. I double it for our dinner.
Take note of the consistency of the batter and you may have to add a little more water as you go along to keep it the same. I find it tricky at first until you get the feel of it. You may have to work with it testing the consistency to make sure they are not too thick or too thin and stir because the meal will settle with each one. These are wonderful and very delicate. Learned these from my Granny too.
Just one historical point on the old meal. When our ancestors ate stone ground cornmeal and wheat flour, they inadvertently ate powdered stone. Very few of them got to middle age with their teeth as a result of this. It wore them down terribly.
My Bertie County connection is my Davis line. My Granny learned this recipe from her GM Herodius Davis whose ancestors spent some time in Bertie Co. before the Revolution. Horace Peele
My Mom "Miss Annie" used to make flour hoe cakes rather than corn meal hoe cakes, but she also used the griddle on top of the stove... I wish I had one now. The last time she did that for me was when she was about 98 or so, I asked her if she would make me one and she took a whole can of ready made biscuits and kneed them together and got out the griddle. It was good just because she did it for me but not the same as she used to make. Best in the world.

Rose Denson
Hello from Texas,
My Great grandmother on down to myself have made Hoe Cake for our broods. I remember as a child of 4 years old a fall spent camping in a cedar break while my Dad and grandpa cut cedar post. We were there about three weeks. I have pictures and wonderful memories of that time. Mom and grandma cooked pinto beans in a huge cast-iron pot , like a washpot, over the fire. At meal time the lid was put on them while they simmered , greased and Hoe Cake was baked on top of the lid.
No exact recipe that I know of, just the following: Flour, baking powder and salt. Water enough to make a batter sort of like a pancake batter. Then fried in the lard on the lid of the pot. At home in later years mom used selfrising flour and water. That is how I have always done it. No measuring the salt and baking powder that way.
Mom always called the bread made with cornmeal, Hot Water Corn Bread or Log Cabins. The Log Cabin name was due to the impression left on the round cake as she patted it out. I don't have an exact recipe, but it went like this: White self rising cornmeal Boiling water A bowl of cold water ( to dip her hands in between patties to keep from being burned!) Cast iron skillet with hot melted lard The water was hot poured in a large bowl holding the cornmeal, just enough to do three or so patties at a time. These were fried, turning once until golden brown. SOOOO GOOD!

Things that go with Hoe Cakes and Cornbread

Nina Cobb
My family raised pigs, peanuts and tobacco in Bertie. So that country ham went in those beans and with those hoe cakes. Keep up the good work.

Reese Moses
Turnip greens, Virginia, what else? I grew up in the country and learned to eat and love greens. Nothing in the world today as good as turnip greens and hot water cracklin' bread. No one has mentioned that either, I don't believe. My dear black Mammy made regular hot water bread with meal, salt and boiling water and added finely chopped cracklings from our smokehouse. Fried in bacon grease, best in the world. I love it all today and forget the calories!
What kind of beans? During the depression, any beans that were moving, we would eat, but dried lima beans (butter beans) navy beans, with a little fat back, and black eyed peas. We usually didn't have meat to put in them, but they filled the tummy (as well as the air after about 2 hours). When nothing else was available, the corn field peas would be cooked. I haven't a clue what corn field peas were, but they worked when you were hungry. A pot of beans with a piece of hot hoe cake after church was a treat for a hungry kid, which I always was.

Hot water cornbread

My Grandma Cowan made these at least twice a week and my daughters and sons-in-law want them every time we cook at my house. As for what goes with them, try good old pinto beans cooked with ham or sausage, thickened Irish potatoes and greens, of course. It's an absolute guarantee that I'm going to overeat.

Use equal amounts of meal and flour (not self-rising). It doesn't matter if you make a small amount or a large amount, just equal yellow cornmeal and flour. Salt to taste. Mix well and add boiling water, about 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When all of the meal is wet (It should be about the consistency of Pla-Doh) let it sit a few minutes to absorb the water. Use a bowl of cold water to wet your hands before making each patty. It will keep your hands from burning and also make the dough easier to handle.Scoop up a big spoonful and shape into patty about 1/2 inch - 1 inch thick and fry in about 1/2 inch of hot oil until golden brown. If your oil is too deep your bread will cook apart. 1 cup flour and 1 cup meal makes about 8 large patties. I guarantee there'll be seconds and even thirds called for ! Lynelle

Corn Bread

These recipes tell us alot about our ancestors and their migrations and
adaptations! Enjoy!


"Reese Moses" 
Yes, Virginia, I know.  My Sunday guests fight for the last piece!

Buy some Lily White corn meal mix, add 1/2 teaspoon sugar,(no more!) 1/3 cup
corn or olive oil, an egg and 2 1/2 cups of corn meal mix.  (I've tried them
all and Lily White makes the best but all are quite good)   I use 3/4 cup
instant dry milk and enough tap water to make a medium thin batter.

I spray my 8 sectioned iron skillet (two of these) with Pam or similar, add
about 3/4 teaspoon olive or corn oil to that, heat to a just smoking temp
and put about 1/4 cup of mixture in each.

Bake in 475 * oven til brown It's thick enough to slice and butter, no
crumbles, and thin enough to be delicious, crusty all over because the
pieces are trianglar in shape.  What's left over, if any, I freeze and
reheat, either by placing in slow oven about 325* or slicing and buttering
and toasting.

Recipe (didn't use the mix of course) from the Jacocks family from Bertie
to TN.
Arline L. Dement" 

I have baked corn bread like my mom and grandmother for years in nothing
but a iron skillet, Black one that I have had for years. They were both
from Georgia.
I do not measure anything. I
1 cup corn meal (yellow or White)
1 cup Flour
couple of tablespoons of any Oil I have on hand
salt to taste
I add cup of sugar ( and my daughter started add the sugar, as her father
had a sweet tooth.) 
1 egg
couple of Teaspoons of Baking powder
Oil Skillit and flour it and bake in the oven until crisp and very brown.
It does not fall apart unless you use to much shortening or oil in it. that
is why they fall apart.
My husband still puts it in his glass of milk, and that is his desert.
 "Jan Holloway" 

My Bertie Co folks left in 1835 ultimately ending up in Texas,
but I know how to make real southern cornbread since my
grandmother taught me as a girl and her grandmother taught her.

Here's the recipe. Like all great cooks my grandmother seldom
measured anything so amounts are approximate).

1 c flour
1 c cornmeal
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoons salt
1 egg
1 cup milk or enough to make a thick pourable batter

Mix together but don't over stir.

Now here's the trick to that crisp crust. Melt a tablespoon or
two regular Crisco in an iron skillet and heat it in a 450 degree
oven until it's almost smoking. Pour the batter onto the fat and
bake for fifteen or twenty minutes (shorter time if in a large
skillet).  Can also make individual muffing, just put a small
amount of fat in each tin.

One last thought -- no sugar added ever. Grandmother always said
sugar in cornbread is a Yankee invention.
I really don't have a recipe for the cornbread that you want but I will
tell you how I make it. These measurements are approximate:

2 cups corn meal (plain)
1/2 cup flour 
2 tsp. baking powder
1 egg (beaten)
1/4 cup oil
Milk (enough to make batter almost soft.)

Pour into oiled and heated iron skillet and bake at 450 degrees until
brown.  My folks think it is very good.

Mary Harper


 "Terri P. Powers" 

   This is how my Mamma made cornbread.  Until I left eastern North
Carolina, I never knew that you could fix cornbread in the oven.
     Make sure that you use yellow corn meal, and not the self-rising kind
either.  Mix it with canned evaporated milk.  Add a little sugar for
flavoring.  Bacon grease or lard is most likely what my mamma used to fry it
in.  Don't try to make a big batch of this.  Use a small iron skillet that
has years of cooking built up on it.  The cornbread needs to be just a
little thicker than a pancake.  Most likely if it is crumbling, it's because
it's too thick.
"Sally M. Koestler" 
X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.7 [en] (Win98; I)
X-Accept-Language: en
To: Crilley 
Subject: Re: [NCBERTIE] Cornbread!

Hi! I believe that the corn bread requested is the very simple corn pone
or griddle cake. My mother said -2 cups cornmeal mixed with 1 cup water
or more --1/2 teaspoon salt --mix,
          add water until stiff. Cook on hot greased griddle. about 10
minutes to each side.

The trick is to get enough water in the mixture, but not too much. My
grandmother told me that was what she cooked for those her father and
those 10 brothers of hers when she was eight.
Anyway this is the corn pone Mama served with fried fish. It was cooked
on top of the stove. There were also many many different corn breads
baked in the oven. Sally

Dear Virginia, and all,  Well, finally something we can sink our teeth
into since some of us have yet to find our lost relatives. This is how
we make it in Texas--passed down from SC since before that War of
Northern Aggression.  

                       Skillet Cornbread

1-1/2 Cups of yellow cornmeal
1-1/2 Cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 Cup sugar
2 Eggs
Enough milk to make a stiff batter--about a cup or so.
1/4 cup melted butter

Heat the 1/4 cup of butter(1/2 stick) in 10 inch cast iron skillet on
top of stove.  This will grease the skillet for you.  when melted, pour
melted butter into batter and mix.  Pour into skillet and bake in 400
degree oven for about 25 minutes.  Don't brown top too much as the
bottom of this will always be quite a bit browner than the top.  Makes a
nice crust, top and bottom.  It's pouring it into a hot buttered skillet
that does the trick for the nice firm crust. 

--God bless all the South and God bless Texas,
charlotte young 

Try these lacy hoecakes:

Mix 1 c. self-rising cornmeal, 1/2 tsp. salt and 2 T.
flour until blended.  Stir in water until mixture is
soupy.  Place about 1 Tbs. oil (of course, Ma-Ma used
lard) in a hot cast-iron skillet.  Pour in enough
batter to lightly cover bottom of skillet, shake
slightly until frilly around the edges.  Cook on
medium-high so as not to burn.  When lightly browned,
flip and cook other side.  Grease pan after each
turning.  Cool on rack to prevent sweating while the
next hoecake is cooking.  Now you can slather the
butter on.  Don't burn your tongue.

Charlotte Carter Young

(Yes I do )(  )   I like it so much that my family sends
it to from N.C.  it to Calif.  You have to have water ground unbolted white
corn meal . Not found in Calif. You mixes the meal with water and a pinch of
salt I don't measure it is almost like pancake batter, just a tiny bit
thicker.  Put it in a black iron skillet in  about a fourth of a inch of oil(
I use olive now because, it is better for you) but old time way was with bacon
grease. or lard .and bake it in a very hot oven about 450 to 500  don't make
it thick about a 1/2''  that's the baked way   If you want to fry it make it
the same way Put frying pan( Blk.Iron is best kind ) add grease 1/2' or so get
it real hot and spoon in the small cake  and brown both side, this is hoe
cakes . if you want to make, lace cakes just make batter thinner than a pan
cake and spoon it in brown both side and put a little salt on it (some people
now put  eggs and milk , Buttermilk  and baking powe and soforth in it I do
for other types of bread) But.that's not the  way   my mother and grand
mothers made and I like it  the way they made it . My children and
Grandchildren love it I always fix it for them when they come to visit.   I do
use other receipt , For spoon bread , Batter bread, corn sticks ,Hush puppies,
and Ect.  If you want to try it order from Abbitt's Mills , Williamston N. C.
27892 order the white meal Stone ground unbolted, Plain not self raising..
They will send it to you the cornmeal is cheaper than the shipping . but worth
it to me ..I have been ordering cornmeal sent all over the USA and even over
seas when we were living their. I live in a Sun City Villages everyone is over
55 and I have people over to eat real often they all love my cornbread and
it's something very few people have ever had and , they did it was when they
were very young.    Just like the Smoked hams fromN.C.  I guess I told you
more than you wanted to know.  But I love to share and I love to cook and I
cook different kinds of food but the food from home are what I like bests.
always  Sarah         I am in
"Daisy M. White" 

In my personal opinion cornbread is only as good as the cornmeal
you use.  For many years I transported a local cornmeal to my
family in Florida as they were unable to buy it there.  Believe
me, the cornmeal I bought in FL was like eating sand.

My mother was a great cook, and she never used a recipe.  She
used white medium ground cornmeal, added maybe one tablespoon of
flour to a cup of cornmeal (this is to hold the cornmeal together
and not crumble) and salt to taste.  She stirred in water until
she got a creamy mixture, then she spooned enough batter into
a skillet of oil to make the size cornmeal cake she wanted.  Brown
it on one side and then turn over to brown the other side. 
Small cakes are made about the size of the top of a cup.  To keep
from standing over the stove and frying individual cakes a lot
of people bake the cornbread, and then cut it up into squares.  The
thinner the batter is, the crispier the cornbread will be.

To make cornmeal dumplings she used the above with less water and
patted cornmeal dumplings to go in the hot boiling pot licker that
she was cooking her vegetables.

You talking about the johnny cakes?  The one that you use cornmeal
(white or yellow, your choice) , add salt and enough water to make it
all hold together (enough water that it is not dry and crumbly), so that
you can put a ball of in your hand and pat it out to a circle (about 1/4
inch thick). It helps to wet the hands.
In the "skillet" melt just enough lard to cover the bottom, get it  nice 
and hot, add the cornmeal patties and cook slowly, turning once so
 that they are nice and tan with brown on the "high marks"...drain on
paper towel.  
These are good with anything on them.
They are also good with all sorts of greens and beans.

Carroll Leggett 


I am not really sure what kind of cornbread this person wants, but can tell
you  about one kind my mother made, and she must have learned how in Bertie
where she was reared.

Fried "lace" cornbread.
As made by Ruby Inez Harden Leggett (later Lanier)
Born near Green's Cross (or "Hardentown"), then reared in Windsor, then
lived on the Williamston Highway near "Pollocks."  

Ingredients are corn meal (plain, not self-rising), "dash" of plain flour
(though not required),salt, pepper and water.   Mother never made cornbread
with sugar, eggs, etc, as ingredients.  For "lace" cormbread, mix the
ingredients so the batter runs freely out of a big spoon. Have cooking oil
very hot (flip a drop of water in and if it pops and sizzles it is ready)
and use a teflon coated pan for easier cooking (though Mother used an iron
skillet).  Pour a large serving spoonful of batter into the cooking oil,
The "cake" should be thicker in the middle and get thinner around the
edges.  You have mastered it when the cooking oil will bubble through the
edges and cook without having the batter break up.  Brown on one side until
edges are crisp and flip.  Watch carefully because it will take far less
time to cook the second side. Should be able to get six or eight into a
good sized frying pan.  Electric fry pan is great for this because you can
control the leat better.  If you don't want to make "lace" cornbread, just
make the batter thicker.  Still should run out of the spoon.  It it will
not, you have the batter too thick.  

Wish I could give measurements for ingredients, but have never measured
them in my life.  Just have to learn to do it right by trial and error.
Wish I had time to share two more kinds.  Maybe later.  

Carroll Leggett 
 How about talking about cornmeal dumplings?  Is becoming a lost
art.  My Mother made them.  I can make them and I know the ladies around
Siloam Church can make them because they show up on the table at
homecoming, etc.  same ingredients as above but they are made up in thick
cakes that you shape and mold in your hand and are steamed/boiled on top of
vegtables that are cooked "in the pot."  was an easy eway to feed lots of
hungry mouths, including family and "hands" in the days when you had to
feed everyone who worked for you at noon.  Mother called it "boiling the
pot" because everything -- meat (you ate the seasoning meat), vegetables,
bread -- was cooked in one big pot.

Claudia Williams Claudia Williams

Last update:Monday, 10-Sep-2018 11:11:44 MDT

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