Settlers used the big black kettle to cook

August 9, 2014

Here’s another excerpt from the book, “Glancing Backward, a History of Lipan, Texas.”

“The stream, forest and field provided food for the early settlers of Lipan. Their methods of preparing the food were like those of all early American pioneers. At first, the black kettles and pots hung over the fire in the fireplace. Stews, meats, and vegetables were cooked in them.

“The breads, cake, and baked potatoes were cooked in a Dutch oven at the edge of the hot ashes with coals of fire under it and heaped on top. Then cookstoves, using wood for fuel, came into use. We did not find a story about the early stoves but did find some old basic recipes that might have been used at the fireplace or with the cookstove.”

Some of the recipes mentioned in this book included Corn Pones, Cracklin’ Bread, Gingerbread, Tea Cakes, Veal Loaf (similar to meatloaf), Molasses Candy and Polk Salad.

I’m so glad we have modern indoor stoves and ovens today. It would be very trying (and hot) trying to cook outside or in a fireplace.

Another job for the big black kettle was the rendering of lard after butchering a hog.

“To render the lard was a tedious, unpleasant chore that required undivided attention. The weather was usually cold and the wind whipped the smoke into the watcher’s face. Some of the fat pieces were put into a cold pot before a small fire was started under it.

“When the fat began to melt, more pieces were added but they had to be constantly stirred and scraped from the sides of the pot with a wooden stick or a long paddle. The fire was closely regulated.

“When the pieces of fatty meat were brown and crisp, they were removed, pressed, and set aside to be used in crackling bread or in soap making. The hot melted fat was strained into stone jars or into five gallon cans, allowed to cool, and then stored in the smoke house/cellar.”

CHURCH NEWS

The Lipan Church of Christ will be hosting a “Back to School Party” on Saturday, Aug. 23, from 6 to 8 p.m. It will be a water theme party, so children are invited to wear shorts and T-shirts. Food and refreshments will be served. Everyone is invited to attend. Plan on getting wet!

BIRTHDAYS

Wednesday, Aug. 13 is Irene Rush’s birthday. She is the sister of A.J. Wartes. Thursday, Aug. 14 is Zach Wartes’ big day. Mason James Westbrook will celebrate his birthday on Saturday, Aug. 16. Happy Birthday everyone!

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Category: Life