“Overboard she goes, my boys, heave ho where darkling waters roar;
We love our cup of tea full well, but we love our freedom more.”
Since colonial days, Boston has been a port of much excitement. But Boston’s initial fame and place of honor in American history all came down to a party – a tea party. Outraged colonists, furious about Britain’s taxes, disguised themselves as local Indians and destroyed a shipment of tea belonging to the British East India Company. “The Ballad of the Tea Party” was one of many songs that glorified what may have been Americans’ first rebellious act toward tyranny. There are words in the song that refer to the rebels as “the Sons of Freedom” who “love (their) cup of tea full well, but … love … freedom more.”
The raid on the English ship in Boston Harbor was a hard choice for Americans to make. First, they were opposing the strong mother country of England. Second, they were giving up the chance to partner a hot cup of the King’s tea with the sweet molasses taste of Boston’s famous brown bread.
Paul Revere was one of the Sons of Freedom who stole aboard ship at the tea party in 1773. Revere again influenced history with his 1775 ride to Concord and then to Boston, warning that the Redcoats were coming. In her song, “Boston Beans,” Peggy Lee reminds us that “Paul Revere rode his horse one night; he lit a lantern before the big fight.” Peggy sings, “He must have been hungry when he got back. Boston beans must have been a beautiful snack!”
Peggy may stretch the imagination a little with the thought of Paul Revere eating Boston beans. Still, the blend of old and new is familiar to the colonial city. Boston, capital of the state of Massachusetts, is often categorized as the historical, educational, and industrial center of New England.
From history to high-tech, it’s all there! Banking, investment management, textile, printing, and metal fabrication are just a few of the business and industrial opportunities that the mega-city offers. Then you add in the food and wine markets, and you’re still just beginning! Peggy was right to sing about Boston beans, as well as “plenty of fish, Chinese food …steaks and chops.” And don’t forget lobsters, mussels, and clam chowder. Boston is home to the Union Oyster House, the oldest restaurant in the country. Exotic Chinese food can be found in Boston’s Chinatown, the third largest Asian neighborhood in America.
From marinas to museums, the quaint atmosphere of times gone by is often sensed. Artists work from lofts high above the hubbub of the street while visitors tour the Boston Tea Party Ship. But it’s not all history of the past. Boston is making its own new history every day! Modern buildings like the Prudential Center and John Hancock Tower stand as symbols of a city on the move. While an authentically clad colonist may greet passers-by in the downtown historic area, Bostonians also look to their city for continuing transition.
|Make Boston Brown Bread in Your Crock-potTraditionally, Boston brown bread batter has been prepared, poured into cans, and placed in deep kettles with enough water for the steaming process. But today, modern science has given us the crock-pot. This recipe calls for one 2-pound coffee can, emptied, washed, and dried. Grease and flour the can.
Then assemble the following ingredients:
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup yellow corn meal
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
6 tablespoons dark molasses
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup chopped pecans OR walnuts (optional)
1 cup raisins (optional)
Mix dry ingredients. Add molasses and buttermilk. Beat well. Add nuts and raisins, if desired. Pour into the greased and floured can.
Pour 2 cups water into crock-pot. Set can inside crock-pot. Place aluminum foil over top and fold down around edge of cooker. Cover and bake on high for 4 ½ hours. Remove and let cool 1 hour before unmolding. Slice and serve with cream cheese. Goes well with ham or turkey, and also barbecue. Of course, Boston Brown Bread is wonderful by itself, and – as you might expect – tastes best with a cup of hot tea.
Boston Baked BeansPretend you are Paul Revere’s wife (did he have one?) and get busy making a pot of beans that will be ready for Paul after a hard day of riding.
Assemble the following ingredients:
1 pound dried navy or pea beans (about 2 cups)
1/4 pound chopped bacon browned and drained
1 large onion cut into rings
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/8 teaspoon pepper
garlic powder to taste
Place beans in large sauce pan and cover with water. Heat to boiling; then boil two minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand one hour. Add more water to cover beans once more. Simmer uncovered 45 minutes. Be sure to keep on low heat. Boiling will cause beans to burst. Drain beans, reserving one cup of the liquid.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fry bacon and remove from pan. Drain. Cook onions in bacon fat until soft. Remove and drain. Add brown sugar, molasses, mustard, pepper, and garlic powder. Simmer 20 minutes. Fold in beans, bacon, and onions and reserved bean liquid. Place all in casserole dish.
Historical Trivia December 16, 1773, the Boston Tea Party took place.
Bake 1 hour.
John Hancock – Chairman of the Boston Town Committee and president of the first and second provincial congresses.
Samuel Adams – chaired leadership of the Massachusetts Patriots.
Benjamin Franklin – Was in England for the Tea Party but came back in 1775 when he heard that the colonies and Great Britain were about to go to war.
James Cook – This English sailing ship Captain circumnavigated the globe twice exploring the Pacific Ocean. He was killed in 1779 by coastal natives during his search for the Northwest Passage from the Pacific side.
James Watt His childhood fascination of the nature and properties of steam led to improving existing steam Engines (1778) for future use in locomotives, steamboats and factories. What a bright man. (60 Watt bulb bright to be exact – a posthumous dedication) Also, Watt coined the term “horsepower,” which he used to convey the power of his engines; Watt calculated how many horses it would take to do the work of each engine.
Alexander Cumming patented a flushing device in 1775 that was improved upon by Samuel Prosser (1777) and Joseph Bramah (1778). The water closet (W.C.) has never been the same since.