Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Johnny Cakes & Pioneer Recipes

The origin of the name Johnnycakes (jonnycakes) is something of a mystery and probably has nothing to do with the name John.  They were also called Journey Cakes because they could be carried on long trips in Saddlebags and baked along the way.  Some historians think that they were originally called Shawnee Cakes and that the Colonists slurred the words, pronouncing it as johnnycakes. Historians also think that “janiken,” an American Indian word meant “corn cake,” could possibly be the origin.

Here's what you'll need:
A Food Processor
A Large Cast Iron Skillet

1 C Corn Kernels, frozen or fresh. (2 Ears)
1/4 C Diced Green Onions
4 TBS Vegetable Oil, divided
2 Eggs, separated
1/4 C Flour
1/4 C Yellow Cornmeal
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black Pepper

Pioneer Recipes

I've always been fascinated with Pioneer life in America. I believe I may have lived as a Pioneer in a previous life, or wish I had.

This recipe is believed to have been made and carried by Pioneers crossing the country in Covered Wagons. It's a preserved cake similar to a Carrot or Fruit cake. It's definitely a vintage and iconic American recipe.
Here's my version of it adapted from several recipes.

I had planned to add to this Post but as a Vegetarian, I have to say that the Pioneers used a lot of Bacon Grease and Fried a lot of their food. They had limited ingredients and Meat, Corn, Flour, Beans, Sugar, Molasses and Milk were readily available. They hunted for their Meat and had Cows for Milk. In the early days stoves and ovens were not common. They cooked outside over an open fire.

Pioneer Covered Wagon Cake

Here's what you'll need:
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees
2 - (9" X 5" X 2 1/2") Loaf Pans brushed with Pan Release Mix (equal parts of Crisco, Vegetable Oil and Flour) I start with 1 C of each mixed well and refrigerated. I always have it available for all of my baking needs.

1 1/3 C Granulated Sugar
1 1/3 C Water
1 1/3 C Fine Grated Carrots
1 C Dark Raisins, rinsed and drained.
1 TBS Butter
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Ground Cloves
1/2 C chopped Pecans
1/2 C chopped Candied Mixed Fruit
2 1/2 C Flour
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Soda
2 tsp Baking Powder

In a saucepan over medium high heat:
Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
Set aside and allow to cool for at least 12 hours. (an important step)

Transfer to a large Mixing Bowl.

In another Bowl sift together:
Baking Soda
Baking Powder
Whisk well.
Add to the Carrot and Raisin mixture.
Stir with a Wooden Spoon, just to combine.
Fold in Pecans and Candied Mixed Fruit, by hand with a Wooden Spoon.

Pour Batter evenly among the 2 pans.
Bake for 2 hours.
Remove Pans to a Rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Invert the Cakes onto a Rack to cool completely.
Wrap immediately in Plastic Wrap or Parchment Paper and Refrigerate until serving.

Peace in the Kitchen!


Peace in the Kitchen!

No comments:

Post a Comment