Sunday, February 28, 2010

Hearth Cooking

Yesterday I attended my second Hearth Cooking class at the George Read House in New Castle De.This was my second time and Debbie's first but not her last time to attend. It was way cool. We prepared and cooked a feast as it would have been in the 18th century. Everything was done over the fire. No modern conveniences save a current day hand whisk used to make the whipped cream. We created dishes like Beef a la Lindstrom, Fruktsoppa, Knackebrod, Svensk Salad, Roast Tail of Pike, Vegetable Hutspot and more.

The Vegetable Hutspot
The Roasted Tail of Pike (we had to substitute Tilapia)

Beef a la Lindstrom

The Orange Cake

Here is the Fruktsoppa.   The recipe Debbie and I made.      After cooking, yes, we took the pot to sit in the snow to cool.   When it was time to eat, the Fruktsoppa was still not chilled so we improvised with nesting it is a bowl filled with snow.   We also whipped the cream and set the bowl of the whipped cream in the snow to keep til dessert time. 
Our table....the photos don't do it justice!  There was so much food, much of it on a back table.

Well. looks like I enjoyed it!    

Other items of interest were the historical significance of the house.   Here is the bell system that was ahead of it's time in the late 1700's/early 1800's.  Each wire leads to a room, each room has a lever to 'flip' to ring the bell notifiying the kitchen and servants which room (of the 22 rooms) the servants should report to.   Pretty cool.
Other neat shots.   Photography in the house itself it prohibited so my shots are only of the kitchen and washroom area.   The John Read House is currently shrouded in scaffolding as they are in the midst of a $1M renovation project so I did not take any photos of the outside.   Check their website.   It truly is a treasure and worth a stop if you are in area.
All that and I managed to stitch a bit before and a bit after.......The Between the Sheets Sampler is not necessary my favorite but I find myself thinking about getting home and stitching up the next part.   I think it is the whole band sampler thing.   Just like alphabets, you get to see accomplishment so quickly.    It is either that or the fact that I will not see the ladies of the group I took the class with until April and I want to be able to show lots of progress.    Either way, it's progress.


Catherine said...

That sounds like a really fun day! I would have loved to go and do something like that! Will they have more events like this? I would definitely go!

Don't forget - you're not just making breakfast for hubby - but for yourself too!

SparkCrafted said...

your son-in-law is not pleased that he didn't get to sample any of this open hearth cooking. i probably shouldn't have told him what you were doing....
looks like it was great fun!

hey, i have a train ticket from East Falls to the airport that i can't use - pretty sure it can get me from here to Marcus Hook sometime....

Blu said...

Sounds like an amazing time! The food looks delicious!

Hazel said...

Wow your cookery class looks like great fun. Totally my sort of thing although not my dh's. Your progress looks great too.

Susan said...

This looks like it was so much fun! You'll have to tell me more about how you got involved when I see you at the guild meeting this month.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I must say that I love your entry on the Read House and Gardens Open Hearth Cooking Workshop! The Read House has a different menu each year and holds 3 or more workshops each winter, on select Saturdays. Information may be found on If anyone is interested in signing up for future workshops email ( or call me (302-322-8411) with your name and email address, and any other contact information you would like to share. Thanks for sharing our work with your blog!

Antoinette Milej
Curator of Education
Delaware Historical Society
Read House and Gardens