Then I remembered, that's why I started this blog. I wanted to show that what is eaten at an event can be just as important as the clothing and weaponry being used. Period food does take effort, but with small changes, anyone can do it.
|Heirloom Tomatoes at my local grocery.|
|Loaves of bread ready for purchase.|
Let's keep moving. Meat. Honestly, you can go a day or two without it. If that is not an option there are alternatives to the bologna packages. I usually go with cured meats for a weekend- slab bacon, sausage, ham, etc. If I have fresh meat I cook it the first day and use leftovers for other recipes. (Such as using roast chicken in soup, or left over beef in a meat pie.) Meat does not have to be a main event of a meal- use it in soups or stews, use it as part of a ploughman's spread, etc. A great thing about the mid-19th century is that there are some canned meats available, such as corned beef. These canned meats do not require refrigeration and travel well.
Up next, dairy. I honestly do not think that I have served a meal at an event that did not involved dairy in some way. Milk, cream, butter, cheese, eggs. There are ways around it, but I prefer not to forgo my dairy. Buy cheese that can hold up for a weekend- Parmesan, cheddar, etc. If you have access to smaller stores you can get "hoop cheese" that is still sealed in wax and can last the weekend without being refrigerated. Butter can be kept in stoneware crocks with lids to keep it cool. Milk/cream can also be kept in crocks or stoneware jugs in a cool place (shady, or in a tub of water) if the weather is not too warm. There are also powered and shelf-stable milk options, I personally have never tried these, but have met reenactors that use them.
|My spice tin stays stocked and ready.|
Well, that was a quick trip around the store. There are plenty of options to make great meals for a weekend with! Remember, if we make smarter decisions about the foods we bring, we are offering a better interpretation of the 19th century. There is always room for improvement.
|A much improved lunch spread!|