Volume VIII, No. 4, Summer 1981

Country Menus

by Sheila and Deidra

At the old-time Fourth of July picnics, along about noon, the children would pause in their ball playing to glance over to the grassy open space where the women were digging into their covered baskets and boxes to get out the dinner they would put on the tableclothes spread out on the ground. The men would look over from the horseshoe game or peek around the trees from their visiting when activity would begin for dinner as women brought out platters of fried chicken, sliced tomatoes, baked beans, potato salad, loaves of homemade bread, blackberry cobbler, garden lettuce salads with radishes, cucumbers and green onions, and innumerable other delicacies they had prepared earlier.

The following recipes are some other foods they might have brought along.

A handy dish to take to picnics was stew, a one dish main course. Lois Roper Beard contributed the following recipe.


2 pints beef cubes 3 large potatoes
flour 2 medium onions
fat 1 qt. tomato juice
2 cups hot water 2 Tbs. sugar
2 carrots salt

Coat beef cubes in flour. Then brown in a small amount of fat. When browned, add hot water. Let meat cook while preparing vegetables.

Pare and cut into small pieces carrots, potatoes and onions. Add to meat. Then add tomato juice. Add sugar and salt to taste. Let simmer until all is tender. Serves 6.

The following recipe that involves no cooking and few ingredients came from Vertress Morgan. It is quick and easy to make.


1 cup vinegar dash of pepper
1 cup water 2 large cucumbers
2/3 cup sugar 1 slice white onion
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix together vinegar, water, sugar, salt and pepper in bowl. Slice in cucumbers. Add slice of onion. This can be served immediately or refrigerated to serve later. Serves 5 to 6 people.

Pies are always a favorite for picnics. They are easy to take and everyone loves them. The following recipes come from the Katie Robinson family.


2 egg yolks 2 T. flour
1 cup brown sugar lump of butter the size of a
1 cup sweet milk walnut
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Beat the egg yolks and add sugar and milk. Mix well. Melt butter in small pan and add flour. Brown flour and butter together. Put in a double boiler and add egg, sugar, and milk mixture. Cook in double boiler until thick, then add vanilla. Pour into small pie crust.


1/2 gal. whole milk
2 cups sugar
3 eggs pinch of salt

Beat the eggs well and add sugar, salt and any flavoring desired. Mix all ingredients together and freeze in an ice cream freezer. Makes 3/4 to 1 gallon.


4 heaping pints of fresh strawberries
3 pints sugar

Place strawberries in pan. Pour boiling water over them, boil one minute and drain water off in colander. Return berries to the pan, add 2 pints sugar and boil 3 minutes. Then add the other pint of sugar and boil 3 minutes longer. Pour into a jar and let stand until next morning, or for several days, stirring frequently until as thick as you desire. Seal cold. Makes 1 quart.


Copyright © 1981 BITTERSWEET, INC.

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