Books from the Mitchells Suited to a Tea At the Table in Colonial America Revolutionary Recipes

Chocolate, Tea, and Beer, Oddly Used

From H. E. Scudder, Men and Manners in America One Hundred Years Ago, New York, Scribner, Armstrong, and Company, 1876, p. 241.

In the olden time it was the fashion, in some parts of the country, to serve a dish of chocolate which had just then come into us, in a curious style. The height of the fashion was to put into the kettle of chocolate several links of sausages, and, after boiling all together, to serve the guests with a bowl of chocolate and a sausage, which was cut up, and then the mess eaten with a spoon.

When tea was first introduced into Salem, the usual mode of serving it up was to boil the tea in an iron kettle, and, after straining the liquor off, the boiled herb was put into a dish, and buttered. This was eaten while the liquid decoction was [drunk] without sugar or milk, [to] wash down the greens.

But this was nothing to be compared to the exquisite breakfast which was in common vogue among the people of Salem some eighty or ninety years since. The sour household-brewed beer was put on in the great brass kettle, and simmered over the fire, with crusts of the brown-bread crumbed in, and occasionally dulcified with a little molasses. This was served up hot to the family, under the name of “Whistle-belly-vengeance.” Surely the modern mode of taking tea in French porcelain gilt cups, with patent loaf-sugar and cream, stirred with a silver spoon, is more delicate, refined, and elegant.