Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Kitchen Pepper

In order to get our period food to taste like it would have 100 years ago we need to season it like it was 100 years ago!  I have found that I have much more nutmeg in my cabinet than ever before, and I bought mace for the first time in my life- all because of period cookery.  This "recipe"  is a blend of spices to use in period kitchens. It comes from The Kentucky Housewife, 1839. 
This blend was pretty easy to put together, and I had everything already in the cabinet (except white pepper, which I grabbed from the Food Lion).   I threw everything into my mortar & pestle. The good thing about modern spices is that most of them are already ground up, making the work a little easier. The instructions say to use 12 blades of mace; mine was already ground, so I used about a tablespoon.  
Mix it together well with the mortar & pestle-it does become a nice fine powder. 
Kitchen Pepper mixed together. 
This does make quite a lot of seasoning.  I had extra that did not fit in by bottle. The extra was put in a modern spice container to use in my kitchen.  This is a spice that does have some heat to it. I am not one that likes hot & spicy foods, and this may be used sparingly in my kitchen. However, I do see where it will enhance the flavor of gravy & I can't wait to try it!

Bottled & Corked!
There is a reference to this pepper in another recipe in the Kentucky Housewife. It is one of the spices found in "Bread Sauce for a Pig".  It only calls for a teaspoon.



  1. This sounds great!
    Definitely something to try.
    Meals lately have been getting boring here. Time to spice it up a little.

  2. Madeira in antebellum Kentucky?

  3. Madeira was being exported worldwide by the early 1800's. The island was a regular port of call for ships bound for the New World, and they brought the wine over. It was a favorite of Thomas Jefferson and Washington, among others. They toasted it to the first 4th of July of the nation.

    If you didn't have madeira, sack or malmsey would have sufficed as substitutes.