How to Make: Cheese Pudding

Cheese Pudding recipe

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Welcome back to Tenacious Genealogy! Today’s post is another historical food recipe – this time, cheese pudding. Yum. (Actually, it is quite a delicious dish as you’ll soon see.)

Cheese pudding… the same name for so many different things… When I first googled the term to see what the recipe looked like, I got stuff like this. Basically, a sweet or savory (depending on the cheese used) souffle-like dish, sometimes made with bread.

This is not the cheese pudding that I’m highlighting today.

Cheese pudding (whether a sweet/savory souffle-like dish or not) has always been an inexpensive food recommended for families wanting to feed a lot of people for not a lot of money. In fact, the cookbook this recipe comes from is specifically a collection of recipes that a homemaker/housewife could use to feed her family without breaking the bank. (Interestingly enough, this cookbook is a step up from a previous cookbook which promised to feed large families for only fifteen cents!)

Needless to say, this recipe costs more than twenty-five cents today, however, depending on where you buy the ingredients, it is still a relatively inexpensive meal.

Two other things to note before I dive into the recipe:

1) Other ‘pudding’ recipes call for boiling the pudding in a cheesecloth or linen bag – this one did not, so I followed the instructions as follows. However, I’m curious to see how the pudding might set if I were to boil it in a bag versus how Ms. Corson describes it.

2) When looking at this recipe, I did not anticipate it being as filling or tasty as it ended up being. The best way to describe the taste of this cheese pudding is that of mac and cheese, but if the noodles were made from masa harina (the type of corn flour used in corn tortillas and tamales) instead of durum wheat flour.

Cookbook: Twenty-Five Cent Dinners for Families of Six
Author: Juliet Corson

Published: 1878/1879

Original Recipe:

2 quarts of boiling water
2 tablespoons of salt
1 pound of ‘yellow Indian corn’
1/2 pound of cheese, grated

Into two quarts of boiling water, containing two tablespoons of salt, stir one pound of yellow Indian meal, and a quarter of a pound of grated cheese. Boil it for twenty minutes, stirring it occasionally to prevent burning; then put it in a greased baking pan, sprinkle over the top quarter of a pound of grated cheese, and brown in a quick oven. Serve hot. If any remains, slice it cold and fry it brown.

My translation of the recipe:

8 cups of boiling water
2 tablespoons of salt
1 pound of golden hominy (maiz amarillo)

1/2 pound of cheese, grated

Boil eight cups of water in a large pot with two tablespoons of salt.
When it is at a rolling boil, add one pound of hominy (maiz amarillo) and one cup (1/4 pound) of cheese.
Boil for twenty (20) minutes, stirring every minute or so to keep the mixture from burning.
Meanwhile, grease up a baking pan (a Pyrex bread pan works great) and preheat the oven to about 385 degrees Fahrenheit. (Anywhere from 375 to 400 will work)
Drain mixture through a mesh colander.
Put the mixture in the greased up baking pan and cover with the rest of the cheese.

Bake in the oven until the cheese on top is all melted and starting to brown on the edges. (About 15-20 minutes.)

Cheese Pudding Ingredients
All the ingredients, literally. (I used mild cheddar cheese because I like the flavor, but feel free to use whatever flavor of shredded cheese you prefer.
Boil the (very salty) water and then add the hominy and half of the cheese. Boil that for 20 minutes. (This is where I would normally put the hominy and cheese in a cheese cloth or linen cooking bag, but I figured trying the recipe exactly as noted wouldn’t hurt.)
‘Cheesy’ (the cheese mostly clung together instead of to the hominy), salty hominy, covered by more delicious cheese.
Hot Cheese Pudding! (This is after being in the oven for 15-20 minutes at 385 degrees Fahrenheit.)

And there you have it! A savory meal for a family of six in the 1870s that is surprisingly filling (the whole dish has about 36 grams of fiber and 55 grams of protein, which probably part of the reason why).

Comments? Questions?

If you end up trying this recipe for yourself or have any questions, feel free to comment below! And if you like what you’ve been seeing here on Tenacious Genealogy – please subscribe to our email list. Not only will you stay up to date with the latest blog posts, but you’ll also get access to freebies such as ’10 Tips for Starting Your Genealogy’ and other fun ‘subscriber only’ items!



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