Abraham Lincoln’s Favorite Dish: Chicken Fricassee
- 1 whole chicken (3 to 4 lb.)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground mace
- 2 teaspoons fresh marjoram (or 1/2 tsp. dry leaves)
- 1 1/2 cups cream, half-and-half, or milk
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 3 Tablespoons ﬂour
- 2 oz thinly sliced ham, optional
- Cut whole chicken into 8 similar size pieces (breasts, thighs, drumsticks and wings) and remove the skin. If using a pre-cut chicken, remove the skin as well.
- Combine salt, pepper, nutmeg, mace, and marjoram, and rub into the chicken.
- Place the chicken pieces in a large skillet. Pour the cream or milk over the chicken, and turn to coat the pieces.
- Cook over medium heat until the liquid begins to bubble, then lower the heat and cover. Simmer until the chicken is fork-tender, about 30 minutes.
- Remove chicken to a platter and keep warm.
- Combine the flour with melted butter. Gradually add flour mixture into the remaining liquid in the pan. Cook and stir until the sauce thickens.
- Return the chicken to the sauce and reheat.
- Serve with biscuits or rice on a plate garnished with sliced ham around the edged, as Abraham Lincoln preferred.
Mary Todd Lincoln’s White Almond Cake
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 cups cake flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup unsalted almonds, chopped
- 6 egg whites
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Sift together flour and baking powder. Remove 2 tablespoons and set aside.
- Alternate adding sifted ingredients and milk, to creamed mixture.
- Stir in vanilla and almond extract.
- Coat almonds with reserved flour and add to batter.
- Beat egg whites until stiff. Add salt into egg whites and then fold into batter.
- Pour into three greased and floured 8- or 9-inch cake pans.
- Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Cool 5-10 minutes, then remove from pans and cool on racks.
- 4 cups sugar
- 2 cup water
- 4 egg whites
- ½ cup candied cherries, chopped
- ½ cup candied pineapple, chopped
- 1/4 tsp. drops vanilla or almond extract
- Let cakes cool and level them for stacking before making the frosting.
- Combine sugar and water in a saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved.
- Bring to a boil, then cover and cook another 3 minutes until the steam has washed down any sugar crystals that may have formed on side of pan.
- Uncover and cook until syrup reaches 238-240 degrees on a candy thermometer.
- Meanwhile, whip egg whites with beater on high until soft peaks form (2 – 3 minutes.)
- Add syrup in thin stream to the eggs whites while still whipping constantly until frosting is spreading consistency. Add vanilla or almond flavoring.
- Separate a portion of frosting to go between the layers of cake and add chopped candied fruit to only this portion.
- Frost cake promptly as the frosting sets quickly. Decorate with candied fruit.
George Washington’s Favorite Dish: Hoecakes with Honey (recipe from Mount Vernon Estate)
- 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 1/2 cups white cornmeal, divided
- 3 to 4 cups lukewarm water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- Melted butter for drizzling and serving
- Honey or maple syrup for serving
- Mix the yeast and 1 1/4 cups of the cornmeal in a large bowl.
- Add 1 cup of lukewarm water, stirring to combine thoroughly.
- Mix in up to 1/2 cup more of the water, if needed, to give the mixture the consistency of pancake batter.
- Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, or overnight.
- When finish hoecakes, preheat the oven to 200°F.
- Add 1/2 to 1 cup of the remaining water to the batter.
- Stir in the salt and the egg, blending thoroughly.
- Gradually add the remaining 1 1/4 cups of cornmeal, alternating with enough additional lukewarm water to make a mixture that is the consistency of waffle batter.
- Cover with a towel, and set aside at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Heat a griddle on medium-high heat, and lightly grease it with lard or vegetable shortening.
- Prepare 1 hoecake at a time by dropping a scant 1/4 cup of the batter onto the griddle
- Cook on one side for about 5 minutes, or until lightly browned. With a spatula, turn the hoecake over and continue cooking another 4 to 5 minutes, until browned.
- As you finish each hoecake, set it on a platter in the oven to keep warm while making the rest of the batch.
- Serve drizzled with melted butter and honey as George Washington preferred.
Gin Rickey Cocktail
Ingredients (per serving)
- 2 oz Gin
- 1/2 oz lime juice
- Club soda
- Ice cubes
- Garnish: lime wheels
- Pour ice into a highball glass.
- Add gin and lime juice.
- Top with club soda.
- Garnish with two lime wheels.