pioneers in the kitchen…il duro lavoro dei pionieri

We saw that it  was quite hard to have a good meal in 1600: hard for pirates on board of their ship, hard for the early American pioneers (settlers, colonists = coloni)
Pioneers had to find food before cooking it. They had to hunt, trap animals or to plant and grow (= coltivare) vegetables. They had also to chop (= tagliare) wood for their fire and  carry buckets (= secchi) of water from a stream or river. Most of them had only one pot (= pentola) and only one plate or bowl (= scodella) for all the members of the family.
This is one of their recipes taken from The Early American Cookbook
The Navajo Bean Balls


4 cups of beans (= fagioli)
8 cups of corn meal (= farina di mais)
1 cup of  flour (= farina bianca)
2 teaspoons of  baking soda (=bicarbonato)
How to make them

  • put the beans in a large kettle full of cold water
  • boil until the beans are soft
  • put the corn meal in a large bowl  
  • mix in the flour and baking soda
  • add the hot beans to this mixture
  • add enough water from the kettle to make a solid dough (= impasto)  
  • roll this dough into small balls
  • bring the bean liquid in the kettle to a boil and drop in (= mettere dentro) the bean balls
  • cook for 30 minutes
  • serve hot.