Period " I'm Your Huckleberry " , With Cake

JPK Huson 1863

Colonel
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
16,530
Location
Central Pennsylvania
#1
huckl nypl top.jpg
huckl nypl bottom.jpg

Huckleberry bush, with male field bunting. Huckleberries seem awfully close to blueberries although it's like eating an almost blueberry. Use seems to have faded since the war, robbing us of both recipes and idioms.

" I'm a huckleberry over your persimmon ".... meant ' I'm a cut above you. Era snark. " I'm your huckleberry ", ( who doesn't love the quote from Tombstone ? ), " I'm your hero, here, folks '.

We never hear of huckleberries- and tough to look up since the term seems to have been usurped by various companies and identities in 2018. Twain must have been partial to a good huckleberry pie- you can't tell me Finn's nickname was random. Have a feeling this thread will help troll ( as in fishing behind a slowly moving boat ) for information.

huckl cake 1865.JPG

This seems the same recipe for blueberry buckle, no? So huckleberry buckle- sounds like a Southern rock band, doesn't it? 1865

huckl 1864 1.JPG

huckl 1864 2.JPG

Seem to have been a kind of staple in areas- 1864, directions for drying them. Wonder how successfully? Have to say, not a fan of dried blueberries, hope these were better.

huckl 1863.JPG

New England, 1861

And for some reason? Food in common language, as a means of communicating ( there's a thread... )

HOPE to hear more from the world of the huckleberry ( please )?
 

(Membership has it privileges! To remove this ad: Register NOW!)

JPK Huson 1863

Colonel
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
16,530
Location
Central Pennsylvania
#4
Some interesting information on Huckleberries is at: https://whatscookingamerica.net/History/HuckleberryHistory.htm

Have found recipes for Huckleberry Jam and Huckleberry Buckle. It is enjoyed by many.

Wonder why huckleberries seem much less a part of our table than in generations past? Grew up trying to pick enough blueberries for buckle- never went well. You know. One for the bucket, twenty for me- Mom generally ended up making coffee cake with blue sprinkles. Sounds as if huckleberries were along the same lines, in places.
 

Eleanor Rose

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 26, 2016
Messages
4,676
Location
central NC
#6
Recipe from Fannie Farmer's 1893 Cookbook:

Blueberry Slump

  • 1 quart blueberries
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Milk
Boil the berries, water, and sugar in a broad saucepan until there is plenty of juice. Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt together and add sufficient milk to make a soft dough. Pour over the berries. Cover closely. Cook for 15 minutes on top of stove. Turn out on hot platter and serve with egg sauce.

(Egg Sauce - 2 eggs, beaten light, 2/3 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla. Beat thoroughly into the eggs and then add vanilla)


(Bakepedia)
 
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
9,671
#8
From What's Cooking America comes a wealth of information:

Did You Know?
Evidence has been found the the huckleberry actually got its name from a simple mistake. Early American colonist, upon encountering the native American berry, misidentified it as the European blueberry known as the “hurtleberry,” by which name it was called until around 1670 it was corrupted to become know as the “huckleberry.”

The expression “I’ll be your Huckleberry” means just the right person for a given job, and it also means a mark of affection or comradeship to one’s partner or sidekick.
(Hmmm, I guess I had rather be someone's hucklberry than hurtleberry!)

Later, the term came to mean somebody inconsequential. Mark Twain borrowed aspects of this meaning to name his famous character, Huckleberry Finn. His idea, as he told an interviewer in 1895, was to establish that he was a boy “of lower extraction or degree” than Tom Sawyer.

Berries with the name huckleberry can be found throughout the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Northwest, but the berry that grows in the high mountains of Montana, called “Vaccinium globulare” are the favorite berry of the people of Montana. Often confused with the blueberry due to its close resemblance, huckleberries are a wild blue-black berry. Although very similar in taste, the big difference is the seeds within the huckleberry that give it a crunchy texture when fresh and its thicker skin. The flavor is a little more tart than blueberries, with an intense blueberry flavor. Huckleberries are not cultivated commercially, so you will have to find them in the wild. Huckleberries can be used interchangeably in most blueberry recipes, so if you find yourself with a huckleberry harvest, just choose a blueberry recipe and give it a whirl. Huckleberry season is normally from June through August.

The huckleberry is a main food source for a wide range of animals including the deer, birds, rodents, insects, and the most well-known – black and grizzly bears. Huckleberries are one of the grizzly bear’s favorite foods, consisting of up to 1/3 of their sustenance. Bears often travel great distances to find them, as the berries are one of their major later summer and fall foods. If you do go huckleberry picking, be aware that you may be in some bear’s favorite patch.

Huckleberries have been a staple of life for Northwest and Rocky Mountain Native American tribes for thousands of years. In the Journals of Lewis and Clark, they wrote of the tribes west of the Rocky Mountains using dried berries extensively in 1806 and 1806. Captain Meriwether Lewis on reaching the Shoshone Tribe (also known as the Snake Nation, occupied areas both east and west of the Rocky Mountains) and the Great Divide, 15 August 1805:

“This morning I arose very early and as hungry as a wolf. I had eaten nothing yesterday except one scant meal of the flour and berries, except the dried cakes of berries, which did not appear to satisfy my appetite as they appeared to do those of my Indian friends. I found on inquire of McNeal that we had only about two pounds of flour remaining. This I directed him to divide into two equal parts and to cook the one half this morning in a kind of pudding with the berries as he had done yesterday, and reserve the balance for the evening. On this new-fashioned pudding four of us breakfasted, giving a pretty good allowance also to the chief, who declared it the best thing he had tasted for a long time. .”

Northwest tribes made special combs of wood or salmon backbones to strip huckleberries off the bushes. They dried the berries in the sun or smoked them and then mashed them into cakes and wrapped these in leaves or bark for storage.

For more go to:https://whatscookingamerica.net/History/HuckleberryHistory.htm
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2015
Messages
1,825
#9
Thanks for sharing this very interesting recipe on huckleberry cake which I never heard of before this thread. I love huckleberries and I used to pick them with my grandfather. Would you agree that the recipe you have posted for huckleberry cake is comparable or similar to a bread pudding recipe? David.
 

JPK Huson 1863

Colonel
Forum Host
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Messages
16,530
Location
Central Pennsylvania
#10
Thanks for sharing this very interesting recipe on huckleberry cake which I never heard of before this thread. I love huckleberries and I used to pick them with my grandfather. Would you agree that the recipe you have posted for huckleberry cake is comparable or similar to a bread pudding recipe? David.

Hadn't thought of it! It could be, yes. I'm just so familiar with ' buckle ', had assumed someone just switched berries in a recipe!

Just occurred to me the topping is missing. Before baking, you mix flour, a little cinnamon and sugar ( I use brown ), add a few lumps of butter and rub it all into crumbs. Sprinkle it over the batter, bake. NO idea on amounts, sorry! Wish I did, just have gotten in the habit of guessing. That probably began when thinking the topping scanty so thought " Well, no one arrests you for changing a recipe ".
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2015
Messages
1,825
#11
Hadn't thought of it! It could be, yes. I'm just so familiar with ' buckle ', had assumed someone just switched berries in a recipe!

Just occurred to me the topping is missing. Before baking, you mix flour, a little cinnamon and sugar ( I use brown ), add a few lumps of butter and rub it all into crumbs. Sprinkle it over the batter, bake. NO idea on amounts, sorry! Wish I did, just have gotten in the habit of guessing. That probably began when thinking the topping scanty so thought " Well, no one arrests you for changing a recipe ".
JPK. As always thank you for your cheerful and interesting commentary which I enjoy immensely. David.
 
Joined
Jan 31, 2017
Messages
1,967
#13
That print, by Audubon, hangs on my Great Room wall to remind me of my childhood, picking wild huckleberries for a pie which my mom would make. Those plants are still around today in the South, but so not seem as healthy or prolific as back in the 1950's.
 
Joined
Dec 2, 2018
Messages
7
#14
The very best of wild fruits. I grew up in the mountains of Northern California, and at 2000' to 3500' feet in elevation, we had late Fall berries. I remember as a very small boy, (mid 1970's), mother would drive me seven miles down the mountain to school and then spend the day in her favorite berry-ing spots, returning to pick me up with half-gallon picklejars full of berries. She'd sell them to some old gals in town or trade for gallons of fresh raw milk. last time I had huckleberries was probably 8 or 9 years back, right before grandad passed. My grandmother was in her early 80's then, used some of her few remaining frozen huckleberries to make biscuits for us. I can still see those old twisted up hands kneading the dough... thanks for the thread, and sparking wonderful memories.
 

AnnaLee

Sergeant
Joined
Sep 4, 2017
Messages
839
#15
I remember my mother telling me the story of when she and her siblings would go up "on the hill" in eastern Ky to pick huckleberries. She said one time they looked down and a copperhead was slowing coming up from the bottom toward their hands. She said they skedaddled and were careful after that to check out the bushes before sticking their hands in them.
 

Shannon Wolf

Private
Silver Patron
Joined
Jan 11, 2017
Messages
181
Location
Jacksonville, FL.
#16
I was a little excited to see this thread! I actually have Huckleberry licorice at home, and huckleberry jams and syrups. There's a company out west that specializes in Huckleberry and other native berries such as Salmonberries. I wonder how they would do in a blueberry lemon cake?
 


(Membership has it privileges! To remove this ad: Register NOW!)
Top