A Civil War Wedding:

Dinner Menus

One can no more define a "Civil War wedding dinner" than you can a modern one. Some people have filet mignon and pate de foie gras prepared by a gourmet caterer; others have beef and noodles at the local Knights of Columbus hall. Then as now, such things are determined by social and financial status and overall preference of the couple in question, and organizers of the event.

So it was in the 19th century. We trust that the following list, from the 1847 work The Lady's Receipt-Book; a Useful Companion for Large or Small Families... by Eliza Leslie of Philadelphia, will suggest the tenor of a typical festive meal of those times while providing as wide a range of possibilities as the modern wedding planner might wish.

Many of these items can be found in our Civil War Recipes section if you want them to be historically authentic. Since most weddings are hectic enough without worrying about such matters we suggest you find modern recipes for these dishes using this as an overall guide.


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COMPANY DINNERS--SPRING.

1. Oyster soup; boiled sheep's-head fish; roasted ham; white fricassee; chickens stewed whole; terrapin veal; sweetbread croquettes; asparagus; stewed peas; stewed spinach; fried celery; maccaroni--Lemon pudding; almond pudding; calves'-feet jelly; vanilla ice-cream.


2. Maccaroni soup; stewed rock-fish; boiled ham; brown fricassee; veal rissoles; chicken rice pudding; larded sweetbreads; asparagus loaves; asparagus omelet; French spinach; French peas; stewed beets--Rhubarb cups; transparent pudding; charlotte russe; lemon ice-cream.


3. French white soup; baked sheep's-head fish; boiled ham; lamb cutlets, the French way; roasted sweetbreads; beef's tongue stewed; French chicken pie; maccaroni; stewed peas; stewed beans; asparagus; stewed spinach--Omelet souffle; orleans pudding; blanc-mange; orange ice-cream.


4. Fine clam soup; halibut cutlets; roasted ham; brown fricassee; broiled sweetbreads; pigeon pie; lobster rissoles; asparagus omelet; maccaroni; lettuce peas; asparagus; French spinach; potatoe snow--Boiled almond pudding; sweetmeat fritters; vanilla flummery; cake syllabub.


5. Green pea soup; stewed sea-bass; French ham pie; baked tongue; cutlets la Maintenon; fricasseed chickens; maccaroni; asparagus; stewed peas; stewed beans--Marietta pudding; Spanish blanc-mange; calves'-feet jelly; lemon ice-cream.


6. Asparagus soup; stewed halibut; roasted ham; chicken curry; fricasseed sweetbreads; terrapin veal; chicken patties; maccaroni; lettuce peas; potatoe snow; stewed beans; stewed beets--Lady's pudding; green custard; wine fritters; gooseberry water-ice.


7. Friar's chicken; halibut cutlets; boiled ham; French chicken pie; sweetbread croquettes; lamb cutlets, French way; lobster patties; Columbus eggs; French peas; stewed beans; stewed beets; potatoe snow--Orleans pudding; orange tarts; pistachio cream; iced jelly.


8. Rich veal soup; stewed carp; boiled ham; sweetbreads stewed with oysters; roast ducks; soft crabs; chicken rice pudding; stewed peas; stewed beans; stewed beets: potatoe snow--Maccaroni pudding; red custard; chocolate cream; almond ice-cream.


COMPANY DINNERS--SUMMER.

1. Duck soup; fresh salmon stewed; roasted ham; French chicken pie; veal olives; sweetbreads with cauliflowers; baked clams; stewed lobster; fried artichokes; scolloped tomatoes; lettuce peas; stewed beans; lettuce chicken salad--Pine-apple pudding; currant ice; iced jelly; strawberries and cream.


2. Pigeon soup; cream trout; baked tongue; terrapin veal; clam sweetbreads; chicken curry; roast ducks; fried cauliflower; French peas; stewed beans; lobster salad--Lady's pudding; pine-apple tarts; raspberry charlotte; strawberry ice-cream.


3. The best clam soup; roasted salmon; boiled ham; rice pie; tomato chickens; sweetbread croquettes; veal olives; lobster patties; cauliflower maccaroni; lima beans; stuffed egg-plant; sweet potatoes--Charlotte russe; cherry water-ice; vanilla blanc-mange; iced jelly.


4. Lobster soup; baked salmon-trout; tongue pie; roast ducks; fricasseed chickens; sweetbreads with cauliflowers; reed-birds; lettuce peas; stewed beans; stewed beets; Sydney Smith's salad--Almond pudding; orange pudding; vanilla ice-cream; Spanish blanc-mange.


5. Maccaroni soup; salmon steaks; French ham pie; chickens stewed whole; white fricassee; lobster rissoles; tomato sweetbreads; lima beans; sweet potatoes; young corn omelet; potatoe snow; fried cauliflower; salad--French charlotte; vanilla blanc-mange; lemon custards; raspberry ice-cream.


6. Rich white soup; boiled salmon; roasted ham; stewed ducks; boiled fowls; plovers; scolloped tomatoes lima beans; sweet potatoes; cauliflower omelet; lobster salad--Marietta pudding; raspberry charlotte; iced jelly; pistachio cream.


7. Normandy soup; roasted salmon; boiled ham; French chicken pie; brown fricassee; sweetbreads with cauliflowers; lobster patties; birds with mushrooms; lima beans; scolloped tomatoes; sweet potatoes; turnips; stewed egg-plant; salad--Orleans pudding; maccaroni pudding; Spanish blanc-mange; peach ice-cream.


8. Mock turtle soup; baked salmon; roasted ham; tongue pie; fricasseed chickens; stewed ducks; plovers; clam sweet breads; broccoli and eggs; sweet potatoes; onion custard; lima beans; salad--Orange tarts; charlotte russe; maccaroni blanc-mange; Marlborough pudding; lemon ice-cream.


Sea-shore dinner.--Clam soup; roast salmon; boiled ham; sea-coast pie; stewed oysters; fried oysters; stewed lobster; crabs; baked clams; mashed potatoes--Biscuit pudding; sweetmeat fritters; cake syllabub; orange flummery.


COMPANY DINNERS--AUTUMN

1. Mock turtle soup; stewed rock-fish; roasted ham; boiled fowls; stewed ducks; fried rabbits; stuffed egg-plant; broccoli and eggs; fried artichokes; stewed mushrooms; potatoe snow; sweet potatoes--Chocolate pudding; meringued apples; cake syllabub; peach ice-cream.


2. Venison soup; baked salmon-trout; boiled ham; French chicken pie; roast ducks with cranberry sauce; veal olives; sweetbread omelet; stewed red cabbage; turnips; onion custard; sweet potatoes--Boiled almond pudding; orange tarts; sweetmeat fritters; vanilla ice-cream.


3. Rich brown soup; sea-bass with tomatoes; ham pie; fricasseed chickens; roast goose with apple sauce; oyster omelet; birds with mushrooms; scolloped tomatoes; cold-slaw; sweet potatoes; broccoli and eggs; fried artichokes; onion custard--Lady's pudding; sweetmeat tarts; lemon custards; almond ice-cream.


4. Normandy soup; stewed rock-fish; tongue pie; roast fowls; partridges in pears; stewed ducks; oyster loaves; lima beans; tomatoes broiled; stewed mushrooms; cold-slaw; sweet potatoes--Orleans pudding; orange custards; Spanish blanc-mange; vanilla ice-cream.


5. Soupe la Julienne; cream trout; roasted ham; stewed wild ducks; tomato sweetbreads; French oyster pie; white fricassee; mushroom omelet; stewed red cabbage; lima beans; winter squash; sweet potatoes; turnips--Marrow pudding; lemon custards; meringued apples; peach ice-cream.


6. The best oyster soup; stewed rock-fish; boiled ham; roast wild ducks with currant jelly; chicken rice pudding; birds in a grove; terrapin veal; sweetbread croquettes; turnips; sweet potatoes; onion custard; broiled tomatoes--Vanilla flummery; omelet souffle; sweetmeat tarts; lemon ice-cream.


7. Meg Merrilies soup; boiled rock-fish; roasted ham; stewed wild ducks; French oyster pie; roasted pheasants; Columbus eggs; mushroom omelet; lima beans; sweet potatoes; turnips; winter-squash; beets--Orange flummery; sweet potatoe pudding; calves' feet jelly; lemon ice-cream.


8. Rich white soup; sea-bass with tomatoes; baked tongue; roast goose with apple sauce; fricasseed fowls; venison steaks with currant-jelly; oyster omelet; broiled mushrooms; turnips; sweet potatoes; winter-squash; lima beans--Cocoa-nut pudding; sweetmeat tarts; lemon custards; chocolate ice-cream.


8. Hare or rabbit soup; stewed rock-fish; boiled ham; pigeon pie; roast fowls; brown fricassee; partridges in pears; woodcocks; oyster loaves; turnips; sweet potatoes; winter-squash; beets; cold-slaw--Sweet potatoe pudding; orange tarts; whipped cream; Spanish blanc-mange.


COMPANY DINNERS--WINTER

1. Mulligatawny soup; fresh cod-fish fried; boiled ham; roast turkey with cranberry sauce; fowls stewed whole; oyster pie; potatoe snow; turnips; parsnips; winter-squash--Cocoa-nut pudding; lemon pudding; mince-pie; calves' feet jelly.


2. Clear gravy soup; stewed rock-fish; roasted ham; boiled turkey with oyster sauce; venison pie; brown fricassee; sweet potatoes; turnips; parsnips; beets--Orange pudding; almond pudding; meringued apples; chocolate cream.


3. Venison soup; fresh cod-fish boiled; smoked tongue; pair of roast geese with apple sauce; oyster pie; French stew of rabbits; turnips; potatoe snow; parsnips; onion custard; beets--Transparent pudding; orange tarts; mince-pie; floating island.


4. Mock turtle soup; boiled rock-fish; ham pie; smoked tongue; roast turkey with cranberry sauce; boiled fowls with celery sauce; oyster loaves; sweetbread croquettes; turnips; parsnips; beets; maccaroni--Charlotte russe; mince-pie; calves' feet jelly; blanc-mange.


5. Rich brown soup; fresh cod-fish stewed; boiled ham; venison roasted; red-head ducks with currant jelly; oyster patties; veal rissoles; turnips; parsnips; beets; winter-squash; cold-slaw--Mince pudding; omelet souffle; orange flummery; vanilla ice-cream.


6. Rich white soup; fresh cod-fish fried; roasted ham; venison pie; boiled turkey with oyster sauce; partridges in pears; chicken rice pudding; potatoe snow; beets; turnips; winter-squash; stewed red cabbage--Plum pudding; chocolate blanc-mange; cocoa-nut cream; apple-jelly.


7. Meg Merrilies soup; stewed rock-fish; boiled ham; canvas-back ducks roasted; French oyster pie; fricasseed chickens; veal olives; winter-squash; potatoe snow; beets; turnips; maccaroni--Orange pudding; cocoa-nut pudding; cake syllabub; chocolate ice-cream.


8. Maccaroni soup; fresh cod-fish stewed; smoked tongue; canvas-back ducks stewed; partridge pie; fricasseed fowls; stewed sweetbreads with oysters; turnips; potatoe snow; parsnips; beets; cold-slaw--Orleans pudding; Italian charlotte; apple compote; orange-jelly.


Christmas dinners.

Mock turtle soup; stewed rock-fish; roasted ham; roasted venison with currant-jelly; boiled turkey with oyster sauce; roast geese with apple sauce; French oyster pie; fricasseed chickens; potatoe snow; parsnips; beets; winter-squash; cold-slaw--Plum pudding; mince-pies; orange tarts; cream cocoanut pudding; Spanish blanc-mange; apple-jelly; vanilla ice-cream.


New Year's dinner

-Venison soup; stewed fresh cod; boiled ham; roasted turkey with cranberry sauce; roast goose with apple sauce; partridge pie; winter-squash; beets; potatoe snow; cold-slaw--Columbian pudding; lemon tarts; charlotte polonaise; vanilla blanc-mange; trifle.


LARGE DINNER PARTIES.--

1. Spring.--Rich brown soup at one end; rich white soup at the other; two dishes of sheep's-head fish, one baked, one stewed, or else baked salmon-trout and cream trout; roasted ham; smoked tongue; chickens stewed whole; roast ducks with cranberry-jelly; sweetbreads with oysters; terrapin veal; white fricassee; brown fricassee; sweetbread croquettes; lobster rissoles; oyster loaves; lobster patties; asparagus loaves; French spinach; French peas; cauliflower maccaroni; stewed beans; fried cauliflower; fried artichokes; stewed spinach; asparagus omelet; cauliflower omelet--Columbian pudding; orange tarts; lemon tarts; charlotte polonaise; green custard; red custard; pistachio cream; maccaroon blanc-mange; vanilla blanc-mange; gooseberry-water ice; currant-water ice; almond ice-cream; calves' feet jelly.


2. Summer.--Turtle soup; fresh salmon stewed; salmon steaks; baked turtle; boiled ham; baked tongue; roast ducks with cherry-jelly; chicken curry; chicken patties; sweetbreads and cauliflowers; tomatoe sweetbreads; lobster pie; stewed lobster; birds in a grove; thatched house pie; plovers roasted; rice pie; mushroom omelets; broccoli and eggs; fried artichokes; stewed peas; stewed beans; stewed beets; potatoe snow; lettuce peas; scolloped tomatoes; mashed sweet potatoes; stuffed egg-plants; stewed egg-plant; Sydney Smith's salad--Pine-apple tarts; lady's pudding; transparent pudding; marmalade puddings; French charlotte; Italian charlotte; iced jelly; vanilla blanc-mange; almond blanc-mange; orange ice-cream; strawberry ice-cream.


3. Autumn.--Meg Merrilies soup; sea-bass with tomatoes; salmon-trout; roasted ham; smoked tongue; roast fowls; partridge pie; birds with mushrooms; partridges in pears; terrapin; young geese with apple sauce; tongue pie; chicken gumbo; woodcocks roasted; rice croquettes; Columbus eggs; onion custard; mushroom omelet; cauliflower omelet; scolloped tomatoes; baked egg-plant; potatoe snow; lima beans; fried sweet potatoes; mashed sweet potatoes--Cream cocoa-nut pudding; chocolate pudding; sweet omelet; preserved pine-apple; preserved citron-melon; Spanish blanc-mange; calves' feet jelly; meringued apples; orange-water ice; peach ice-cream; biscuit ice-cream.


4. Winter.--Mock turtle soup; oyster soup; rock-fish stewed; fresh cod-fish fried; boiled ham; baked tongue; roast turkey with cranberry-jelly; boiled turkey with oyster sauce; roasted canvas-back ducks with currant-jelly; stewed canvas-back ducks; partridges in pears; salmi of partridges; French oyster pie; turnips; potatoe snow; winter-squash; fried salsify; fried celery; onion custard--Plum pudding; mince-pie; charlotte polonaise; charlotte russe; calves' feet jelly; pistachio cream; cocoa-nut cream; chocolate ice-cream; orange ice-cream.


TEA PARTIES.

--Have black tea, green tea, and coffee. Immediately after the first cups are sent in, let fresh tea be put into the pots, that the second cups may not be weaker than the first. With the cream and sugar, send round a small pot of boiling water to weaken the tea of those who do not like it strong; or for the convenience of ladies who drink only milk and water, and who otherwise may cause interruption and delay by sending out for it. When tea is handed round, it is not well to have hot cakes with it; or any thing that is buttered, or any sort of greasy relishes. Such things are frequently injurious to the gloves and dresses of the ladies, and can well be dispensed with on these occasions. It is sufficient to send round a waiter with large cakes of the best sort, ready sliced but the slices not taken apart. There should be an almond sponge-cake for those who are unwilling to eat cakes made with butter.


Immediately on tea being over, let the servants go round to all the company with waiters having pitchers of cold water and glasses, to prevent the inconvenience of ladies sending out for glasses of water.


In less than an hour after tea, lemonade should be brought in, accompanied by baskets of small mixed cakes, (maccaroons, kisses, &c.,) which it is no longer customary to send in with the tea. Afterwards, let the blanc-mange, jellies, sweetmeats, ice-creams, wines, liquors, &c., be handed round. Next, (after an hour's interval,) the terrapin, oysters, and chicken salad, &c. These are sometimes accompanied by ale, porter, or cider; sometimes by champagne. At the close of the evening, it is usual to send round a large plum-cake.


If the plan is to have a regular supper table, it is not necessary to send in any refreshments through the evening, except lemonade and little cakes.


When the company is not very numerous, and is to sit round a tea-table, waffles or other hot articles may there be introduced. Take care to set a tea-table that will certainly be large enough to accommodate all the guests without crowding them.


SUPPER DISHES FOR A LARGE COMPANY.--*

Boned turkey with jelly; partridge pie; game dressed in various ways; cold ham glazed thickly all over with a mixture of bread-crumbs, cream, and yolk of egg; two smoked tongues, one placed whole in the centre of the dish, the other cut into circular slices and laid round it; cold alamode beef; French chicken salad; Italian chicken salad; marbled veal; potted lobster; pickled lobster; terrapins; cream oysters; fried oysters; pickled oysters; oyster patties; biscuit sandwiches; charlotte polonaise; charlotte russe; French charlotte; calves' feet jelly; trifle; Spanish blanc-mange; chocolate blanc-mange; coffee blanc-mange; maccaroon blanc-mange; vanilla blanc-mange; pistachio cream; cocoa-nut cream; chocolate cream; vanilla cream; lemon custards; orange custards; green custard; red custard; meringued apples; whipt cream meringues; iced grapes; orange-water ice; damson-water ice; vanilla ice-cream; lemon ice-cream; almond ice-cream; chocolate ice-cream; biscuit ice-cream; maccaroon ice-cream; preserved pine-apple; preserved citron-melon; preserved limes; preserved oranges; brandy peaches; brandy green gages; port wine-jelly; pink champagne-jelly; frozen punch, &c.; plum-cake; lady-cake; almond sponge-cake; frothed chocolate with dry toast.


An elegant supper table may be decorated with a profusion of real flowers tastefully disposed in pyramids and other forms; or with the sugar temples, obelisks, pagodas, baskets, &c., made by the confectioners. Unless at a very large and splendid supper it is bad taste to introduce these sugar ornaments.


* From these may be selected supper dishes for a small assemblage, or for a company of moderate size.



 

 



 

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