WHEN HOPE ANDREWS was in a Japanese internment camp in Shanghai during World War II, she thought a great deal about food -- American fresh fruits and vegetables, anything but rice.
When Frances Kelly was a small girl, she grew up with church cookbooks, especially from St. Andrew's Episcopal Church of Washington. Her grandmother had contributed a receipt (they never spelled it recipe) for strawberry preserves to the book.
So more than a quarter of a century ago when the board of directors for the Hammond-Harwood House of Annapolis -- the historic 1774 house designed by early architect/builder William Buckland -- needed a money-making project, it didn't take long for Kelly and Andrews both of whom lived in historic Maryland houses, to decide to cook up a book.
It is a measure of how things have changed since the book was published in 1963 that the authors were listed on the title sheet as Mrs. Lewis R. Andrews and Mrs. J. Reaney Kelly.
Another measure of the passage of time is that "Maryland's Way" has sold more than 100,000 copies, with $164,500 profit going to the Hammond Harwood House Endowment Fund. It is still selling well in bookshops and by mail (for $10.95 plus $1.25 postage and 55 cents sales tax for Maryland residents from The Hammond-Harwood House Cook Book, 19 Maryland Ave., Annapolis, Md., 21401).
The cookbook is notable for its fish and game recipies, reflective of the ingredients available in its area. Muskrat soup, for instance, may arouse a question as to where you go to buy a muskrat. "Right down the road from my house," said Andrews, whose home, Tulip Hill, is on the West River country near Annapolis.
Many of the recipes came from 19th-, even 18th-century cookbooks, many of them food spattered, hand written.
Some of the recipes have their roots well watered by Maryland history, such as the Peggy Stewart Tea Punch. The recipe is sort of a Maryland joke, since in 1774, the Peggy Stewart brig carried tea taxed by Britain. The owner was forced to burn the brig.
In keeping with thinking about food in that place and that time, the food is subtle in flavor, rich in butter, cream, milk and eggs. As interesting as the recipes, are the menus of elaborate meals served in grand houses. The remarks about the fabled men's eating and drinking clubs give a glimpse of the persistence of old traditions. The Tuesday Club of Annapolis, for instance, carried "a provident rule . . . that no fresh liquor shall be made, prepared or produced after 11 o'clock at night." The book also carries recipes for food suitable for serving at oyster roasts, ring tournaments, horse races and cock fights.
Of the search for recipes, Andrews said, "We were lucky because we had friends in different counties. They all had luncheon parties for us and cooks with great old houses. They brought their recipes with them.
"The measurements were the most difficult part of the cookbook. We had to translate them from instructions such as "butter the size of an egg."" A few of the recipes are included with their old-style instructions, such as "take a wine glass full of flour".
Kelly remembers asking friends for lists -- garden club, church, school and so on. The cookbook authors sent out letters to everyone on the lists asking for regional recipes. "We particularly asked for seafood and game recipes. We got so many we had to scrounge for meat and vegetables," said Kelly.
Andrews and Kelly were honored by the Hammond-Harwood House board recently for their contributions. The tribute luncheon, served at the house, had a menu of chicken salad, ham, beaten biscuits and other foods -- prepared "Maryland's Way," of course. FRESH GARDEN CORN CHOWDER (8 generous servings) 8 large ears fresh, young corn 2 quarts milk 4 egg yolks 4 tablespoons butter 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste 2 teaspoons sugar White pepper, chives and paprika
Trim off all silk from the corn, then grate corn off the cob into a large cooking vessel; add milk and heat slowly. Beat egg yolks and work the soft butter into them; add a little of the hot corn and milk mixture to egg and butter, beating well; then stir this into the kettle. Add salt, sugar and a dash of pepper and heat over gentle flame taking care not to curdle the egg yolks. Serve in large, heated soup plates or bowls and, if you like, garnish with chopped chives and paprika. CRUMPETS (8 servings) 1 pint milk 1 egg 1 teaspoon salt About 3 cups flour 4 tablespoons butter 1/2 cake yeast
Scald milk and let stand until lukewarm; add beaten egg, then add salt and flour and beat vigorously. Melt butter and add to flour mixture with yeast that has been softened in a little tepid water. Beat again until stiff, cover and set in a warm place until very light and airy. Grease muffin rings and place them on a hot, greased griddle. Fill each ring half full of batter.Bake until brown on one side, then turn and brown on the other. Take from fire and set aside. When ready to use, split and toast the crumpets. Butter them nicely, and serve quickly on a hot plate. DECATUR HOUSE BAKED CRAB (4 to 6 servings) 6 tablespoons butter 3 tablespoons flour 1 1/2 cups cream 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 3/4 teaspoon dry mustard 3/4 teaspoon salt 3 tablespoons sherry 3 tablespoons bourbon Dash hot red pepper sauce Dash worchestershire sauce Dash ground red pepper 24 ounces flaked crab meat Bread crumbs stirred in melted butter
Combine butter and flour in large skillet and brown over medium high heat. Add cream and beat over heat until thick. Add pepper, dry mustard, salt, sherry, bourbon, red pepper sauce, worchestershire sauce and red pepper.
Clean crab meat of cartilage. Add to cream sauce. Pour into buttered baking dish; cover with bread crumbs and bake at 350 degrees until nicely browned, 20 to 25 minutes.