I was visiting a used bookstore yesterday when I came across J. George Frederick’s Pennsylvania Dutch Cook Book (Dover, 1971) ISBN: 978-0486226767. I have to confess that I’ve never had an interest in Pennsylvania Dutch cooking, but the book was brand new and on clearance and for some odd reason those two things made it sound so much more attractive to me. Based on the back page matter, the book is an unabridged reprint of the second volume in Frederick’s 1935 tome, The Pennsylvania Dutch and Their Cookery.
The thing that strikes me on this cursory thumb-through is that many of the recipes seem to be based on using whatever items are on hand. There seems to be little prep time needed, and some of the recipes look really good. Dutch Chicken Chowder (#25), for example, is short and sounds tasty:
- Leftover chicken
- 1 qt. milk
- 3 potatoes
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Tbsp. flour
- 1 small onion
- 1 Tbsp. salt pork or bacon
Use the remains of a chicken meal, separate from bones and dice. Place bones in cold water together with leftover gravy and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain, add the milk (a quart for each quart of broth).
Mince the onion and brown with the salt pork or bacon, diced, add the potatoes, parboiled and diced, the butter and flour, and simmer further. Season to taste, serve hot, with water crackers or Dutch butter pretzels. (pg. 20)
I could see substituting chunked or diced chicken and using a shelf broth, to make this in a hurry. And the Dutch Huckleberry Pie (#244) also sounds like something that would be easy to concoct and serve.
After lining a pie plate with pie crust, put in a quart of huckleberries, which h ave been washed well and picked for stems and green berries. There should be a half-inch depth of berries. Pour 1/2 cup sugar over the berries, 1 tsp. of flour, 1/2 tsp. salt, and then grate some nutmeg over it. Slit the pie. Bake 30 minutes in a hot oven. (pg. 114)
Now, would this work as well with blackberries? It’s certainly worth a try.
I’ve only started looking at this book, but what I’ve seen thus far looks promising. I may have to try a few of these.