(These are not all 18th century, food preservation has come a long way)

One of the more expensive items that Captains Lewis and Clark took on their epic Voyage of Discovery was that of "Portable Soup"; costing $250.00. Meriweather Lewis bought 150 pounds of this from a baker in Philadelphia by the name of Francois Banet. Unlike Captain Lewis, you do not have to search out a Francois Banet and buy his soup. You can make your own.
In a large pot, boil a whole chicken (or good LEAN beef, or deer meat) till very tender. Drain off liquid through a large sieve into another large pot. Bone out the chicken and separate from bones. Dice all meat to that of about 1/4 of an inch square. Place chopped meat into broth, add a little salt. Place paper towels on surface of soup to soak up any and all of the grease, till you have just the broth.
Dehydration (The "American Beauty" brand is the one that I have. It has 'segments', or round trays, that can be stacked up to 8 high. And a fan that circulates air to the trays. Though any good brand of dehydrator will do the job)
On the plastic sheets of a good dehydrator, pour soup mixture onto sheets. Stack as many trays that is recommended for your dehydrator, and set to maximum heat on the machine. When dry, set out to cool, then lift out the pieces of dried soup -- place the pieces into a dry pot and crush till a flake powder is to be had. At this time, add broken noddles if desired. Or when on a trek, use hard-tack for "dumplings". Store in clean containers in cool dry place, do not freeze.

NOTE......> ((I do not know if it would be a good idea to dry the soup out in a warm oven as bacteria may have a chance to form - - so I would NOT do that if I were you. All I know is that I have not had any problems doing this with the above instructions.))
JK 1998 James R. Kyle


A friend of mine sent me the following letter that might be of interest also. His name is Frank Sablan, so if you use the following, please be sure to give Frank the credit.

After some experimentation I have come up with an easy way to make dried sausage. Take any type of prepared beef stick or summer sausage. Make sure that it does not say "refridgerate after opening," on the wrapper. Slice into sections about 3/16 of an inch thick- thicker peices take longer to dry. Place on the racks of a dehydrator- high temp for one hour and then place on the lowest setting. You will get an accumulation of grease off the slices that will drip down to the lowest level. Everyday you should check these and blot the grease off the slices and turn them. When completely dry store in a cloth sack in a cool dark location. I have some that were prepared 6 months ago and when stored this way are still in good shape today.
Eat either dry or toss into a stew to reconstitute.
Good luck
Frank Sablan


2 Tblsp Salt
2 Tblsp Pepper, black
1 Small Onion, chopped
1 Tblsp Celery seed
1 Tblsp Mustard seed
2 Clove Garlic clove, minced
1 Tsp. Hot sauce, such as Tabasco
2 Tblsp Worcestershire sauce
3 Tblsp Soy sauce
1 Tblsp Beer
2 Tblsp Lemon juice
1 1/2 Cup Water
5 Pound Beef, round, lean
5 Pound Beef, brisket lean fat trimmed
5 Pound Venison, all fat removed

Place meat in freezer for about thirty minutes or until the blade of a knife can just pierce the meat. Remove from the freezer and cut into quarter inch thick strips, remove all fat. Put all ingredients into a saucepan except the meat. Bring this mixture to a boil .
Lower heat and simmer for ten minutes. Let cool.
Place strips of meat in a long flat roasting pan or casserole dish in alternating layers ( you can sprinkle each layer with additional salt if jerky is to be stored for long period of time ). Pour the cooled liquid ( you can use this liquid hot to blanch the meat if so desired ) over the layers of meat when last layer of meat is in place. You may strain the mixture first to remove large pieces of onion and seed or use as is. Place the pan of meat in the refrigerator for eight to twenty-four hours.

Drying Directions :
The meat may be dried in an oven or dehydrater.
Put the strips into a cold oven directly on the oven racks with a cookie sheet placed below to catch the drips or place on broiler pan. Set the oven to 125f. place a table knife between the door and oven to leave a small opening to allow moisture to escape. Dry for 12 to 48 hours. Remove jerky from oven when dry and allow to cool. Place in large freezer bags or plastic or glass jars. Store in a cool dark place until ready to use.
Put the strips of meat on the dehydrater trays. Turn on the dehydrater. Allow to dry for 12 to 24 hours. Remove jerky from dehydrater when dry and allow to cool. Place in large freezer bags or plastic or glass jars. Store in a cool dark place until ready to use.
Jerky may be used as a snack, trail food, or cooked into soups and stews.
This recipe makes about 1 1/2 to 2 pounds of jerky.

Mutton hams are a well-known specialty reflecting the lack of pigs in Scotland in days gone by. This 18th century recipe is an ideal dish for those whose religious principles forbid them to eat pork but who would enjoy the flavour. In the 1700s mutton hams were a famous Scottish border specialty and a major export overseas from Glasgow. Today, especially in the north, geese and beef joints are still cured and smoked. Note that the brine mixture below can be used to cure beef, pork, duck or geese.

1 gigot (leg) of mutton, about 10 lbs.
8 pints water
1-1/2 sea salt (best) or coarse salt
2 oz saltpetre
1 lb dark brown sugar
2 oz allspice
1 oz peppercorns
1 tbsp coriander seeds
8 crushed juniper berries

1. Boil all ingredients for 5 minutes, cool.
2. Strain into deep, clean crock or bucket, immerse meat totally.
3. Keep covered in dry place under 60F (28C).
4. Leave beef, mutton pork for 10 - 14 days, depending on size.
5. Leave large goose 4 days, duck 2 days, glblets removed.
6. When removed from brine, wash, soak for 4 hours in clean water.
7. Make peat or hardwood fire, add juniper branches or berries to smoulder in embers.
8. Hang meat over fire for 10 - 14 days, or send meat out to be smoked.
9. All meats and birds are delicious without smoking if boiled as follows:
10. Boil for 30 minutes per lb, use only cold water to start (hot seals in salt).
11. Add any root vegetables desired.
12. Add 1 tsp dry mustard to keep meat moist.
13. If serving cold, leave meat in stock to cool.
14. With beef, pork, mutton serve Caper sauce or Lang Kail.*
15. With duck, goose serve Onion sauce.

* Lang Kail (kale): Kail boiled, strained, chopped, seasoned, mixed with butter.

Serves: 12

12 Medium Green Peppers
2 Cup Cabbage,finelly-chopped
1 Cup Onion, Chopped and peeled
1/2 Cup Green Pepper,Chopped
1/2 Cup Sweet Red Pepper, chopped
1/2 Cup Celery, Chopped
1 Tblsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Tblsp Celery seeds
1/4 Cup Horseradish, fresh grated or prepared
1/4 Cup Salt
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar (packed)
1 Pint Cider Vinegar
1/2 Tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 Tsp. Paprika
1/2 Tsp. Dry mustard
plus for pickling brine
3 Pint Cider Vinegar
1 Quart Water
1/2 Cup Salt
1 Tblsp Celery seed
1 1/2 Tblsp Mustard seed
4 Tblsp Whole Cloves
2 Tblsp Whole Allspice
1 3 inch Cinnamon stick, broken
2 Blades Mace or
1 Tsp. Ground Mace
Olive Oil, 1/2 cup per jar

A lot of trouble to make, but well worth while. Old time cooks called these and stuffed fruits "mangoes".
They were favorites in English-American homes because the flavor is superb with baked ham, game, roast pork, and with baked beans. Serve whole as a salad or slice and use as garnish.
Wash all vegetables well before chopping, drain peppers; cut off tops and save; remove seeds and membranes. Cover tops and peppers with water in a sauce pan and bring to boiling; boil gently 10 minutes, or until almost tender. Drain and let cool. Combine chopped vegetables. Mix remaining ingredients ( down to pickling brine) and pour over vegitables and mix well. Stuff into peppers , do not pack too tightly. Place tops on peppers. Tie in place with cotton string. Place peppers in wide mouth jars or stone crock. Heat together in a agate or enamel kettle all of the brine ingredients axcept the oil. Bring this mixture to a boil; pour over stuffed peppers. Let cool.
To each 3 peppers in a jar or crock add about half cup olive oil. Cover.
Let stand in a cool place 10 days or longer before serving.
To serve remove string, drain peppers.
Note: The remaining oil and spice mixture can be used as a salad dressing or marinade.

Serves: 25
5 Tsp. Tender Quick (Morton's) preservative (this is modified from original recipe)
1/2 Tsp. Cayenne Pepper
3 Tsp. Salt
2 1/2 Tsp. Mustard seed or ground
2 Tsp. Black Pepper
1 Tsp. Liquid Smoke
1 Tsp. Fennel Seeds, cracked
1 Tsp. Celery seed
2 1/2 Tsp. Garlic
1 Tsp. Anise seed , cracked
5 Pound Ground venison
Place the ground deer in a large flat pan. Spread it out. Mix all the seasonings together in a seperate bowl. Sprinkle some of the seasoning mix over the top of the meat and mix (knead it) very well. Add more seasonings and mix well again. Continue this untill all of the seasoning mix has been added and thoruoghly mixed into the meat. I use rubber gloves for this step.
Now place the pan in the refridgerator, uncovered for 24 hours. Next day, remove from fridge, remix, and place back in fridge, uncovered for another 24 hours. Remove from fridge and form into loaves about 1 lb each. The loaf should be about 8 inches long and 2 1/2 to 3 inches in diameter. Place the loaves on a cookie sheet or lasagna pan and place in the oven at 200 degrees for 8 to 10 hours, turning the loaves after about 6 hours. After about 7 hours you might want to cut open a loaf to see how it is cooking. This will be a dry type loaf unlike the wet greasy summer sausages. This treat can be easily sliced and a great snack. Loaves can be placed in a zip-lock bag and frozen for extended use. They store well for quite some time in the refrigerator.
Makes 5 - 1 pound loaves


2 lb Shoulder of mutton
1 c Dried green peas
1/2 c Pearl barley
2 qt Cold water
2 ts Salt
1/4 ts Pepper
2 Onions chopped
3 Carrots diced
1 c Turnip diced
1/2 c Celery diced
1 tb Parsleychopped

Soak green peas overnight and soak barley for 2 hours.Wipe meat and trim off fat.Put into broth pot with cold watersalt and pepper. Slowly bring to the boiling point and skim.Add peasbarley and onions and simmer gently for 2 hours.Cool then skim fat from broth. Bones may be removed if desired.Add carrotsturnip and celery and simmer 30 minutes until vegetables are tender.Season with more salt if needed and pepper to taste.Twenty minutes before servingadd parsley and remove any film of fat that has gathered on the surface.
Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens by Marie Nightingale shared by Elizabeth Rodier Conf: (1010) F-COOKING
The book mentions Portable Soup (sometimes called Pocket Soup or Glue) that was made by simmering stock for 12 hours and then boiling/stirring constantly for 8. Then solid stock was formed into small cakes. Sea-faring men and woodsmen could carry them in their pockets.

Walks In Shadows

Here are a few links that are not totally period correct.

But then food preservation has come a long way!