Tag Archives: author

Roast Buffalo on the Fourth of July

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine blogging about buffalo. So here goes nothing !!!!

This entry will be the first of many installments wherein recipes, meal planning, and cooking will take center stage. Volume Two of the Petticoat Rebellion; A French Colonial Culinary History has been in preparation for some time now. This 1718NewOrleans2018 blog is now the venue for the cooking and recipe information that will be included in the book. And what better day to begin than Independence Day, 2016, and what better dish to serve up on America’s birthday than a Buffalo Roast. For the past many years my family has usually served a roasted then smoked turkey. This year we decided on something different, but still uniquely American.

The context of the recipe and meal is the Natchitoches chapter of Volume Two. Natchitoches, in the words of one historian, “the most important frontier post in the Atlantic World” (of the 1700’s) was also the most western outpost of French Louisiana. Additionally, it was the point of contact between the Spanish and French empires in North America. Natchitoches was the channel – as the eighteenth century progressed – through which flowed much of Louisiana’s livestock trade. Although technically illegal, Spanish cattle and horses, and Native American “wild cattle” or American Bison came into the colonial economy. Thus to showcase this chapter of Louisiana’s culinary development . . .

Acquire a buffalo roast of your choice (we chose an eye of round roast), about 2 or 3 pounds will feed a family of four. Prep for roasting as you would any beef or pork roast.

Tricentennial Method:

Prepare a traditional Louisiana mirepoix or Holy Trinity plus Pope =
One medium bell pepper
One medium onion
1 or 2 stalks of celery
+ 3 or 4 toes of garlic (i.e. The Pope)
Finely chop the vegetables

Into a large iron pot (with cover), coat the bottom with olive oil, and sauté the mirepoix until soft, add some beef stock and slowly warm it all up.

Rub the buffalo roast with an herbal rub of your choice.

Place the roast fat side up into the pot, cover, and put it into an extremely slow oven (280 to 300 degrees) OR an electric slow cooker for several
( 3 or 4) hours.

When the roast it done, for the gravy move the pot to the stove and remove the roast, set aside to rest. The sauce is now essentially a beefy vegetable stew. Add some more stock and cooking flour, bring to a boil, season to taste (salt, pepper, Creole seasoning, etc.) and let boil for 15 to 30 minutes. If desired, slice the roast and add the meat to the gravy.

Serve with potatoes or rice, green beans, and hot bread.

Colonial Method:

Much stays the same, except the cooking. In place of an oven or slow cooker, the Native or colonial cook would be at a fire – either enclosed in a large fireplace or outdoors in a fire pit. The iron pot containing the meat and vegetables would be placed among the hot coals at first for a half-hour to an hour, then moved to a cooler area at the edge of the coals for the remaining several hours. If the inside fireplace had the luxury of an built in brick oven, the pot would have been placed there much like in our modern ovens.

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Filed under 18th Century, Creole Cooking, NEW ORLEANS TRI-CENTENNIAL 1718 TO 2018, Recipes, Tri-centennial, 1718, 2018, 300th, anniversary, author, writer, speaker, teacher, non-fiction, Bienville, Iberville, Bayou St. John, Natchez, Indians, Native American, Tunica, Bayougoula, Mississippi,

Blogging into the Void: Inspiration

Ever since Thanksgiving – fully two months ago plus – there has been a dearth of productivity on my part. It was always edit the next chapter. Get Volume One re-edited and redone for a reprint. Every once in a while some writing a V. 2 would sneak in. Then again it was always back to volume one, damn the volume one.

Well, now it has been re-edited. What remains is to re-submit it to the printer so that a clean version can be reposted online for sale. And yet, for the past several weeks, I have been more and more slipping into a depression of sorts wondering if Volume II can ever move forward. Finally, today, February 9, 2015, I have taken the day off. I have gotten some interesting books. Today I begin reading and seeking inspiration. It has in fact already started. The Muses await, peeking around the door and window, and hopefully today and tomorrow they will make themselves known more fully. This post is the first step.

 

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Filed under Louisiana History, New Orleans Tercentennial, NEW ORLEANS TRI-CENTENNIAL 1718 TO 2018

Self-Printed 3.0 by Catherine Ryan Howard

Having been doing social media now for three or four years, this is the first time that I have an real understanding of what social media can be. Since my work was in the early stages of composition, I have been following Ms. Catherine Ryan Howard through her blog and some of her other writings. Now I have an opportunity to help Ms. Howard spread the news about the new third edition of one of the most valuable books that I have used during the opening stages of what I hope to be a long and fruitful career. So now, without further ado (drumroll please)…

Splash Badge

As part of this SPLASH process, which I assume is meant to splash news about her new book all over the Internet, participants got the opportunity to ask Ms. Howard a question. This facet of the program has the pleasant result of disseminating useful information along with notification of her latest efforts. I hope my readers find my question and her response helpful in their endeavours*, to wit…

Q. What are your thoughts and recommendations on managing time as a new author dealing with revising, editing and formatting your self-published book while trying to spend some creative time composing your current or next work?

A: To be honest my two primary tasks would be different to what you’ve outlined above. I don’t think you are constantly revising, editing and formatting your published book. That should all be done once, within say a 3 month period, and then the book gets published and that’s the end of that. I wouldn’t be writing a new one while that’s going on because it demands time and your full concentration.

I would say what you’re trying to balance is promoting your published books and writing a new one and the only way to do that is to divide up your time. When I was doing this full-time, I did new work in the morning and social media stuff in the afternoon. Now that I’m back studying, I have two days for my self-publishing/writing stuff, and I do new writing on one of them and everything else on the other one. There’s basically no getting away from the fact that you have to do both, because you can abandon neither. I like to keep them separate – different times, different days, different computers even! – because there’s no point trying to write 1000 new words and keep an eye on Twitter at the same time. Divide and conquer, Jerry – that’s my advice!

So there you have it, very useful information, A extremely well-done book on this whole process of self-publishing – or self printing – which is fast becoming the art of writing in the 21st-century. I hope my readers might find it interesting and useful. Best wishes to you in all your endeavors**. Meanwhile, back to work on The Petticoat Rebellion.

* Since she’s Irish, I figured I’d splurge and use the British spelling. Of course, this brings up the whole British/Irish situation, so maybe we better forget it.

** Ah, good ole America! We can misspell anythang.

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Self-Publishing and Self-Editing, Part V

Summer is over. It has been one heckuva summer too! it’s time for a few updates to the 1718 Project. Let’s begin with the actual”writing”. Three chapters have been written for volume 2, namely, a chapter on Gov. Vaudreuil’s regime in the 1740s, the backstory chapter about Tante Suzanne and her mother’s heritage from West Africa to San Domingue, to the original capital of Louisiana, Mobile. Finally, a very short chapter on Gerard and Suzanne’s take on coffee, chocolate, and wine. But you will have to wait for these chapters when volume 2 is posted.

Much of the time this summer has been spent on the title of this blog entry. I’ve uploaded volume 1.1 to CreateSpace, it is now in revision and more self-editing. Making no promises, I hope to upload volume 1.2 by the end of October, and have it ready for download as an e-book and also available in a print version. In other news, and with a bit of excitement, Beth and I will be presenting an author’s night at the local library at the beginning of November. The two sessions will be on Thursday November 6, and on Saturday, November 8. In character as Frere Gerard and Tante Suzanne, we will introduce the 1718 Project, The Petticoat Rebellion, and some recipes. The presentation will be enhanced by some actual food.

Here is a recipe that we came up with in the late summer. We made it from scratch, I don’t know if it’s very original. The more I research the history of food in the 18th century and then put that research into practice creating recipes that would have likely been used by our story tellers, Frere Gerard and Tante Suzanne, the more I get this feeling that originality is very hard to achieve. Most of Creole cooking is not rooted in its originality but rather in its variations. After all, there are only 4 or 5 meat choices, somewhat more vegetable choices, combined with 5 or 6 grains, and then enhanced with numerous spices and herbs. In any event, our Orange and Ginger Chicken (which follows) turned out to be a pretty fantastic meal. Hope you enjoy.

Tante Suzanne has come up with a new recipe using only ingredients and spices available in New Orleans in the mid-18th century.

Begin with the juice of four fresh oranges at least 2 tablespoons of fresh ginger, ground or crystallized. Sauté the holy trinity and the pope ( onions, celery, bell peppers and garlic *) in a bit of olive oil for 10 or 15 minutes, chunk up several pieces of boneless chicken (dark or white, as you prefer) add to the sautéed vegetables with about a cup of stock. Let that simmer for about a half hour, Add orange juice, Some pulp, and the ginger, stir well and let that cook at least for a half hour. Cooking time can vary but I wouldn’t go over a total of 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Serve over rice with a nice salad or side –. baby carrots make a nice choice.

* Quantity of each depends on amount of servings desired. For a family of four or five, Tante Suzanne uses one each medium onion and bell pepper, two or three stalks of celery, and five to six cloves (toes) of garlic. Reduce or enlarge the quantity according to your needs. The same idea goes for the amount of chicken.

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Filed under Creole Cooking, Recipes, Tri-centennial, 1718, 2018, 300th, anniversary, author, writer, speaker, teacher, non-fiction, Bienville, Iberville, Bayou St. John, Natchez, Indians, Native American, Tunica, Bayougoula, Mississippi,

EVERYDAYNESS

My last post back in May originated in St. Louis. While I did in fact get lots of research done for the project there, it has been a while since I have been able to get back to my networking. Immediately upon our return from St. Louis we were thrown into the process of moving to a new house. Keeping it on the cheap, and since the distance from the old house to the new house was very short we decided to use our pick up truck to move. At the pace of one room every two or three days as well as all the accumulated stuff of 40 years of marriage, etc, the move took the entire month of June. We finally completed the last cleanup on the Fourth of July.  Naturally, except for an occasional visit into my real life – writing, that is – very little production was accomplished during that month. I looked forward to July to get back into the swing of things; production of new material, revision of old material, blogging, working on the webpage, et. al. Well, here it is the end of July and I have produced perhaps half a chapter. I have done no recipe testing and only a minimal amount of research. This morning in a moment of revelation, it occurred  to me that the nature of one of the great enemies of the writing life is “everydayness”.

TO MOWING DE LAWN

 

 

 

 

OR

DICKENS WRITING

THAT IS THE QUESTION

 

 

For instance, it is now One o’clock in the afternoon on a Monday, my family is away at work and I have the whole house to myself, I have plenty of food, lots of coffee, and yet what have I done since waking this morning? I prepared breakfast, I read the news, I watched the news, I went to the bank, I went to the gas station, I came home and cut the grass, then cleaned up a little bit in the yard and continued to do what I have been doing the entire month of July, that is, unpacking. The unpacking is almost done, as done as it needs to be for the family to be functional so now I can actually post to my blog. Last night I actually reviewed the construction of the new website. As of yet today I have done no research, have done no writing on the new production, nor any revision of the old material.

So there you have it –  everydayness – doing what a homemaker does, doing what a retired Country Gentleman does, doing all sorts of things except writing.

So now I will try to schedule not only general ideas of what I intend to do on a given day or during a given week, but I have taken up the idea of laying out a daily to-do list to balance the everydayness with the real purpose of my existence –  Writing Culinary History.

Stay tuned, something interesting may begin to develop as summer begins it’s march toward fall.

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Filed under Creole Cooking, New Orleans Tercentennial, NEW ORLEANS TRI-CENTENNIAL 1718 TO 2018, Non-Fiction

HELLO FROM ST. LOUIS

Hearth Arkansas PostTagging along on my coauthor/ photographer/wife’s business trip to St. Louis, I am reveling in first hand visual research on the Arkansas Post and the Illinois Country. We now have, among others, our first original photograph of an 18th century hearth.

Culinary historical research so far (2010 – present) has established that this area provided Lower Louisiana with pork, primarily hams, wheat flour, and wild game produce. This last category includes meat, fur, hides, tallow, and fat/oil. The materials provided by this unexpected adventure into Upper Louisiana will go far to further confirm these ideas as well as generate new information to complete coverage of this oft neglected source of 18th century Creole food ways.

View of St. Louis

Now (Later in the Week) the history of the region is coming more into focus. Lots of French and Indian diplomacy and cultural exchange going on from the 1670’s forward. French Louisiana has surprisingly more depth than a study of New Orleans and it’s surroundings would indicate.

On another note, St. Louis is about as American as a city can be. And surprise, surprise – it’s cuisine is a collection of food from literally all over the world. So far we have sampled St. Louis pizza, eh, it’s a pizza. St. Louis invented the toasted ravioli, turned out to be pretty good. The barbecue pork and beef are excellent.

Now for something completely different. Never stay at the St. Louis Airport Hilton. In-the-room wifi access is a charge, not free. The phone to the front desk does not work. No complimentary breakfast. The parking lot card reader is flaky, never know if you can get in or out until you’re there. Need one say more. However, the staff was very nice and helpful.

Get your FREE copy of
The Petticoat Rebellion Vol. One @ The iBookstore
OR
http://self.gutenberg.org
OR
our website, http://1718neworleans.com

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Filed under 18th Century, Louisiana History, New Orleans Tercentennial, Non-Fiction

Self-Publishing and Self-Editing, Parts IV b & V; et. al.

http://1718neworleans.com

Self-Publishing and Self-Editing, Part IV b

The institutionalized process of academic printing has also encapsulated all of the above functions (i.e. create, print, edit, bind, publish, sell) into the peer-review system, especially the editing function. Whereas 20th century publishing houses offered editors to their authors* , in the academic system, the process of research, writing the essay, submission to journals, peer-review, criticism, controversy, rewrites,response to critics, presentation at conferences, more rewrites, collection into a book, submission to university presses, etc. pretty much solves the problem of having a book edited. Independent scholars and authors have yet to solve this problem. Or, better stated, the system is now basically a money issue. One can pay a professional editor to go over your work, do the rewrites and then submit ( see Part IV a). Or, I see hope in the revision process. The Petticoat Rebellion Vol. One is now at version 1.0. I know that it contains some errors. Over the next several months, as these errors come to light, the can be corrected and offered as updated versions, much like software has been done for decades. It remains to be seen how this process will play out.

*Note: how one became one of their authors is a whole other matter.

Self-Publishing and Self-Editing, Part V

Four units moved on the iBookstore. Thirty-eight downloads from the website. One download from Gutenberg Self-Publishing. And even one fan letter – in the FIRST MONTH !

Whoop didily do    !!!

This week Version 1.1 was posted making some minor corrections to chapters 6 and 17. I hope that my readers (that sounds so cool!) will forgive chapter 6’s title and fix themselves some red beans and rice, rather than some “read’ beans and rice. Oh well, after all, that’s why version 1.0 is free. Subsequent versions will also remain free. I am thinking of charging a dollar on the iBookstore once the on-going editing and revisions play out. Of course volume 2, will carry a charge, but that amount hasn’t been decided yet.

The self-publishing process was really a learning experience as well. Not only mastering the technology of iTunes Producer but tending to the thousand details regarding copyright, page layout, and book layout. Nevertheless, as time-consuming as the process was and remains, it is definitely NOT a waste of time.

Apart from the marketing, which never ends, the final task remaining is conversion to EPUB and submission to Amazon for the Kindle version.

And now for something completely different. 

I find it fascinating that one who could probably be considered the best of Louisiana’s French governors (after Bienville) is also the one least documented, the hardest to pronounce, and almost unknown to the general population, much less to the historically minded population. PIERRE DE RIGAUD DE VAUDREUIL DE CAVAGNIAL,  Marquis de VAUDREUIL, called by the citizens of New Orleans and Louisiana, and mercifully for historians and writers, the Grand Marquis. Monsieur Vaudreuil was a quintessential French aristocrat of the Old Regime. His governorship during the 1740’s raised Louisiana to it’s highest point as a French colony. He dealt with (and controlled) the Native Americans of the Mississippi Valley, he stabilized the colonial economy, he opened up trade (against policy) with the Spanish and British empires in North America and the Caribbean; and finally, for good measure, he introduced gracious living to New Orleans’ nascent Creole society. The Grand Marquis was indeed a traditional New Orleans character. He then went on to become governor of New France, that is all the French possessions in North America, where-in the wrong place at the wrong time-he was the governor who found himself surrendering to the British and pretty much losing the French and Indian Wars.

You will read more about him in The Petticoat Rebellion Volume 2. If you can’t wait, here is a link to probably the best biography available in English at this time.

http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/rigaud_de_vaudreuil_de_cavagnial_pierre_de_4E.html

 

http://1718neworleans.com

 

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Filed under 18th Century, Louisiana History, New Orleans Tercentennial, Non-Fiction