A Johnny cake or also referred to as a journey cake, were a form of pancakes in the 1700’s to early 1800’s. They were used on long journeys and by farmers. There cakes are made with cornmeal instead of flour. They are light and fluffy. Often times they are eaten with just butter or syrup. Tonight we went for a more savory meal, making the herbed butter. These johnny cakes are often times cooked on an iron griddle or pan. The recipe used to a pretty standard recipe. For a shorter version of the recipe, you can use jiffy cornbread mix. Just add milk and there you have the batter. That is what I usually do but I did use the recipe this time.
The butter was easily made and took little time. Butter making was often a child’s job and they would sing songs with working with the churn. An example of a song would be:
Betty Botter bought some butter, “But,” she said, “the butter’s bitter; If I put it in my batter, It will make my batter bitter; But a bit of better butter, That would make my batter better. ”
So she bought a bit of butter, Better than her bitter butter, And she put it in her batter, And the batter was not bitter; So ‘twas better Betty Botter Bought a bit of better butter.
Here are the recipes: