Friday, May 18, 2012

Using Your Food Storage: The Little House Cookbook

One of the fun things we did on our mini-vacation to southwest Missouri was visit Laura Ingalls Wilder's house.

Laura Ingalls Wilder House
Mansfield, MO

It was a treat to tour the home Laura lived in when she wrote her famous "Little House" series of books. I was an obsessive fan of the "Little House" books as a child and only slightly less obsessive as an adult.

Needless to say I spent more than I probably should have in the museum bookstore. In my bag of Laura-themed paraphernalia, I came away with this.

The Little House Cookbook: Frontier Foods from Laura Ingalls Wilder's Classic Stories

I've always wanted to know how to prepare the foods mentioned in the books and all the iconic recipes are there. Now, however, I read The Little House Cookbook through the lens of preparedness and realized just how useful this it is.

  • The meals are simple, using staples from food storage, game from hunting, or produce from the garden. How do you make hasty pudding, jackrabbit stew, or stewed dried fruit? Now I know. One thing I appreciate is how simple all the recipes are. They use just a few ingredients and many of them come straight from our food storage. This is ideal from a preparedness point of view. 
  • Many of the meals were originally cooked over an open fire or fireplace. The recipes have been adapted to modern cooking appliances, but they could easily be turned back to the originals in a grid down or camping scenario. Just make sure you have the appropriate cast iron cookware. 
  • How about making things we usually buy? This book gives recipes for making vinegar from apple cores, rendering lard, and crafting hard cheese.   

This cookbook is so much fun for a Laura fan and it proved that I can find prepping related items anywhere, even on vacation!


  1. From one obsessive fan to another:

    I live near DeSmet, where there's another Laura Ingalls Wilder museum, which is very interesting. They also have a museum at the Ingalls homestead where you can make butter and twist hay sticks like in her books.

    I also have that cookbook, and I agree - it's very intersting reading. I have gotten quite a few prepping ideas from her books.

  2. Oh, I fell in love with those books when I was a kid, and I still read them every few years. What a wonderful, vivid way she had of writing! We live in Kansas and enjoyed our trip to the house in Missouri. And, a few years back, when our family went on a lengthy camping trip that took us to Yosemite, I visited the house and museum in DeSmet that SD Mom mentioned. It was so fascinating to see the places I'd read about! Thanks for the good memory. :)