Sunday, April 6, 2008


Inspired by the Old Foodie's series on damper, I went looking for an "authentic" recipe for johnnycake, surely the North American continent's country cousin.

This is from The Bluegrass Cookbook (which can be downloaded from Michigan State University's wonderful Website, Feeding America ).

"1 quart meal
1 pint warm water
1 teaspooon salt

Sift meal in a pan and add water and salt. Stir it until it is light, and then place on a new, clean board and place nearly upright before the fire. When brown, cut in squares, butter nicely, and serve hot."

(By meal, this Kentucky cook of course meant cornmeal. The print is for sale here, and if I had $11k, I'd buy it).


The Old Foodie said...

Hello Shay - I am belatedly getting around to answering this post! I am curious to know why similar dishes end up with different names in different parts of the world - especially when there is a common heritage.

Shay said...

The origins of the word "johnnycake" are clouded in mystery, and there are as many explanations as there are stars in the sky. If I have time next week I will do some research and send it to you.

Julie said...

Are Johnnycakes the same as Journeycakes? I found an adorable book last fall called Journey Cake, Ho!" with the little character Johnnie. The illustrations were done by Robert McCloskey (Make Way for Ducklings, etc). THere are a few pics here:

Shay said...

Johnnycake, journeycake and shawneecake.

(love the McCloskey drawings!)