Wednesday, January 30, 2013
What's that food? Salsify
Salsify is a root vegetable. It is sometimes referred to as "oyster plant" or "vegetable oyster" because people thought it tasted like an oyster.
The most common preparation method seems to have been frying. It is often included with other root vegetables like turnips and parsnips in flavoring stews and "stuffing."
Salsify was introduced to North America by settlers from Europe and today grows wild in all states except the extreme south east. It's popularity as a vegetable peaked in the 18th century, but was still used well into the 20th. Today, slasify is finding it's way to fashionable dinner tables again.
From: Domestic Cookery, Useful Receipts, and Hints to Young Housekeepers by Elizabeth E. Lea, 1846. Page 50
From: Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book by Catherine Esther Beecher, 1846 Page 81