The Sag Harbor Historical Society continues its “Fridays on the Porch” series with “Cooking in Colonial Times” with The Reverend Karen Campbell at The Annie Boyd House.
Reverend Campbell, a Society Trustee and Rector of the Christ Episcopal Church in Sag Harbor, and her husband Graham previously lived in a house built in 1687 by the brother of the first Hildreth in East Hampton. During that time, the couple learned about the prior nine generations of residents before them, and cooking has been a highlight.
“Karen Campbell stepped forward and invited everyone to take a look at the challenges and joys of cooking during colonial times,” said Nancy Remkus of the Society. “This will be something new to the Sag Harbor Historical Society and I’m sure it will give us all a new appreciation of the colonial women who first made their way to Sag Harbor.”
Similar to camping, colonial cooking is a bit primitive. Firewood had to be chopped months in advance and five hours prior to cooking, a fire had to be built in the brick oven. If the hair on your arm burnt when you tested the oven, it was finally hot enough to use. Afterwards, the ash was saved for soap making.
It took four pounds of butter, five pounds of flour, and 18 eggs to start a cake.
Cooking and working next to the open hearth was the second most common reason for women’s death behind childbirth. It was an everyday challenge that women mastered by working together and breaking the processes down into manageable time blocks.
“As a trustee of the Sag Harbor Historical Society the Reverend Karen Campbell explores her interest in the history of our village and what it might have been like to provide for their families under less than ideal conditions,” Remkus added.
“Cooking in Colonial Times,” which will be held on Friday, August 10 at 5 p.m., will include a tutorial about the methods, a chance to try them and also taste the products.
Admission is a $20 tax-deductible donation, which includes wine, beer and snacks.
The Annie Boyd House is located at 174 Main Street in Sag Harbor. For more information and to reserve a spot, contact 631-725-5092 or visit sagharborhistorical.org.