Pioneer Hoecake

Pioneer hoecake can be made by mixing 1 cup corn meal with 1 cup boiling water; salt, eggs, and lard can be added for flavor. Form thin cakes, and cook on a lightly greased griddle; a little dry meal on the griddle reduces sticking.

Unleavened Bread

When a dough of wheat flour and water is heated quickly, the dough puffs up because of steam pressure. The simplest unleavened bread was made by soaking grain in cold water until soft and sticky, forming thin cakes, and baking on a slab of wood before a hot fire. A similar procedure can be used for any cracked grain or meal. In the middle East today, coarse flour and water are mixed, kneaded, rolled to 1/16 in. thick, and baked on a steel bowl placed upside down in the embers.


Early civilizations parched wheat for easy grinding and made porridge from the meal. In this country, the Indians soaked dried corn until soft, pounded it in a wooden mortar, and boiled it for porridge. To make porridge stir 1 part of grain, crushed grain, parched grain, or meal into 1 part cold water; when soaked and swelled, stir the mixture into 2-3 parts boiling water or milk; add a pinch of salt and fruit or sugar to taste; cook 15-60 min. until soft. Whole wheat cereal can also be made by overnight cooking in a double boiler with water and salt. When cooled, porridge (including grits) sets like gelatin and can be sliced, fried, and served with butter and syrup; fried grits were a southern breakfast favorite.