The Hold

Main Ingredients

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Plum Duff

“Duff” is a sailor slang for dough. (which also brings a new meaning to the term ‘get off your duff’). This is usually used in reference to breads with leavening, like cakes, bread, and rolls, and not unleavened breads like Hard Tack. Serves: About 6-8 Ingredients: 1 ½ tsp active dry yeast 1 cup warm … Continue reading

Quick Sausage

Sausage is another food-storage with murkey beginings. Needless to say, encased cured, dried meats store for a very long time, and can be used in a multitude of ways. This recipe is not really sausage, as the meat is not really cased, and the meat itself is not smoked. However, the flavor is right and … Continue reading


A Native American travel-food. It has a lot of protien, fat, carbohydrates and sugars in a very small package, and stores well. Consequently, if you are travelling far, it’s a pretty good choice. Naturally, European settlers quickly adopted it. Travelers of any sort, even on sea voyages, likely carried some with them. Serves: About 12 cakes Ingredients: 1 … Continue reading

Dandelion Salad

Growing up, I read about people eating dandelions, but whenever I tried one, they were bitter and inedible. As it turns out you need to pick young leaves before they flower. Rinsing well with water to remove some of the sap also helps. Dandelions were an important food source for Native Americans, and were known … Continue reading

Baked Beans

Baked beans is actually a Native American dish. Several of the northeastern tribes would bake their beans mixed with maple syrup and deer or bear fat. Often, they would dig bean holes and line them with hot rocks to bake (not unlike a clambake). European colonists would substitute molasses for maple, bacon for deer fat, but … Continue reading

Potato Dumplings

Every culture has some form of dumpling.. From African Fufu, German Spaetzle, or Chinese Jaioze. The cultivation of the potato in the sixteenth century found it moved to the center of western cooking. So naturally, one day somebody tried making potato dumplings. Dumplings are great because they are the ‘bland starch’ that goes with everything. … Continue reading

Hard Tack

The classic traveler bread,  “tack’ was  sailor slang for food, as in supplies. We call fishing gear tackle from the same reasoning. Classically baked six times, hard tack was very hard, very dry, and could survive for years so long as it was kept dry. This version isn’t cooked quite as long or often (twice … Continue reading

Fruit Fritters

Fritters are an incredibly versatile food. Fried bread of one form or another exists in almost every culture in thousands of variations. This version is more ‘desserty’ then most. A nice treat that pairs well with cream (or ice cream). Makes 12 fritters Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups ripe fruit (mango, papaya, pineapple, plantain, guava, or … Continue reading

Egg Pie

Another dish that typifies the Seventeenth (and earlier) century taste for savory. The mixing of eggs and fruits might seem odd to modern palates, but once you accept the idea, this will likely become a breakfast favorite.   Ingredients: 24 egg yolks 12 egg whites ½ lb. Apples Currants ½ lb. Sugar salt 1 cup … Continue reading

Coconut Drop Cookies

Another recipe that while tropical, probably isn’t very piraty. These cookies are, however, amazingly good. Makes: 15 cookies. Ingredients: 1/2 stick butter 1/2 cup powdered sugar 1 egg 1/2 cup all-purpose flower 1/2 teaspoon baking powder pinch salt 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes 1 1/2 tsp dark rum Directions: Butter a cookie sheet and preheat … Continue reading