Friday, April 23, 2010

Charleston Receipts Cookbook

I have been enjoying this cookbook ever since I found it at an antique store. It is the kind of culinary collection that just makes me want to sit out on my back porch with a large iced tea and leave the phone inside!!

Charleston Receipts is a book that was compiled by the Junior League in Charleston, S.C. in 1950; it can boast twenty-three printings! That's no small feat for a little fund-raising cookbook. The first year that the ladies of Charleston sold this book (Nov. 1950) they printed 2000 copies. On the twenty-third printing in January of 1981, 50,000 copies were printed (and 50,000 each, the previous two years). I did some research online, and this book is available through the gift and book shop of The Charleston Preservation Society's website (http://preservation Rec).

There are so many recipes in this book that are unique to the history and culture of Charleston. Sprinkled amongst the many time-honored receipts for local delicacies such as She Crabs and Chainey Briar (Wild Asparagus), are quips from Gulla cooks who commanded the kitchens of Charleston Area Plantations in the early days of the famous city and its surroundings. For example, above the She-Crab Soup recipe is this cook's quote,"....Crab got tuh walk een duh pot demself or dey ain' wut." It adds that the eggs are what give She-Crab Soup its' wonderful flavor, so street vendors would always yell "She-Crab" loudly and charge extra for them.

Aside from the recipes for items that might be harder to find in other parts of the country, like the wild asparagus, there are many delicious selections for easy-to-find ingredients that are very basic in the making of great southern classics. This book is abundant in seafood, wild game, pie and cake recipes and the side-dishes that everyone looks forward to in a meal such as: Pickled Beets; Succotash; Corn Fritters and Stuffed Cabbage Leaves (with rice). It brought back good memories to see recipes for hominy, sweet potatoes and Soft Popcorn Balls (page 292). I hope you'll enjoy reading this cookbook as much as I did. Get your favorite porch-sittin' chair and iced tea glass ready!

Scripture Cake page 256
Mrs. Harold G. Dotterer (Harriet Lipscomb

4 1/2 C (1st Kings 4-22) Flour
1 C (Judges 5-25) Butter
2 C (Jeremiah 6-20) Sugar
2 C (1st Samuel 30-12) Raisins
2 C (Nahum 3-12) Figs
2 C (Numbers 17-18) Almonds
2 TBSP (1st Samuel 14-13) Honey
1 pinch (Leviticus 2-13) Salt
6 (Jeremiah 17-11) Eggs
1/2 C (Judges 4-19) Milk
2 TBSP (Amos 4-5) Leaven (yeast?)

Season to taste with (2nd Chronicles 9-9) spices. Mix like a fruit cake and bake.

I will be at these swaps today:



  1. My aunt has a copy of this cookbook and it's one of her favorites! She'll share a "receipt" now and then just to whet my appetite!

  2. Hi Marcia,
    That looked so familiar to me, and sure enough I have the 1993 version.
    What is funny is that I got it in TJMAXX here in NY . I had never heard recipes called RECEIPTS before! It must be a Southern word. :)
    I will have to look through it again..
    Southampton, NY

  3. I love the Scripture cake. I made a copy to make it and I also need to look up the scriptures to go with it. Very Interesting! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Sounds like a wonderful cookbook - and the Scripture Cake sounds delicious!