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November 03, 2023

What’s Cooking @ HEPL: Ep 16

By: Heidi Herald

Welcome back to What’s Cooking @ HEPL! I am Heidi Herald, a Public Services Librarian at Hamilton East Public Library, and I review one of the library’s cookbooks quarterly. This will be the final episode of What’s Cooking @ HEPL. I am sure the library will have new blogs upcoming that will capture your interest!

This month, I am reviewing The Conner Prairie Cookbook by Margaret A. Hoffman. The author was born and raised in Hammond, Indiana. She began working at Conner Prairie in Fishers as an interpreter in 1974 and taught hearthside cooking there. I also had the opportunity to interview Kevin Carter at Conner Prairie a few weeks ago to find out a little bit about the renovations and remodeling happening there.

It was very interesting learning about pioneer cooking techniques using this cookbook as a guide. While the recipes were simple and sometimes bland, most of them used common ingredients to make a hearty meal.

Pictured here is a simple recipe for fried cucumbers, which combines sliced cucumber, onion, and a little bit of butter.

I also enjoyed making Candied Flowers and Leaves with Borage, Lemon Balm, Catnip, and Rose Petals.

Pictured here is an applesauce cake made with a variety of spices, which turned out delicious.

I also made a very filling potato and onion soup. It is a very simple dish which contains onions, potatoes, butter, milk, salt, pepper, and cream.


Finally, I made the carrot fritters recipe. It was my first time frying something in pure lard!


Check out my interview with public historian Kevin Carter from Conner Prairie, where Kevin talks about exciting happenings at the living history museum in Fishers:

I hope you will borrow The Conner Prairie Cookbook by Margaret A. Hoffman from our library collections! It is available in print format from the Hamilton East Public Library.

Happy Eating!


Explore our HEPL YouTube playlist What’s Cooking @ HEPL for access to the entire cooking series at your own pace.

Missed the last episode? You can find the recipe here.

Follow HEPL on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn to be the first to know when we share a new featured cookbook and recipe on What’s Cooking @ HEPL!  Be sure to tag us and use #HEPLFoodies to share what’s cooking in YOUR kitchen!

Credit goes to Danielle Acton, HEPL’s Adult Engagement Coordinator, for producing the videos and for her help and advice.