Thursday, September 20, 2012

Want to learn how to cook in an emergency?

The phrase "culinary history" can sound like dusty stuff, with "receipts" for strange foods like pumpions and dried green beans.

Ah, but there is much to be learned in how people used to cook. Our local group of culinary historians, the Historical Cooking Guild of the Catawba Valley, wants to prove that to you with a class on Saturday, "Emergency Prep: Eatin' High on the Hog When the Power Goes out."

The class will cover things like equipment and supplies, how to "put food by" (canning, curing, drying, smoking and bucket storage), kitchen safety in the dark and useful resources. You'll get hands-on lessons in cooking in fireplaces, fire pits and gas cookers. You'll learn the tricks to washing up in a bucket. And you get lunch: pork barbecue, baked beans, corn cakes and apple crisp.

The class will be at the President James K. Polk Historic Site, 12031 Lancaster Highway, in Pineville from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The cost is $20, and advance registration is required. To check on whether there are spaces left, email Leila Merims at

PHOTO: Pam Dudeck demonstrating fireplace cooking at the James K. Polk Historic Site. Courtesy of the Historic Cooking Guild of the Catawba Valley.