Godey's lady's book, perhaps the most popular magazine for women in nieenth-century america, had a national circulation of 150,000 during the s. the recipes (spelled "receipts") it published were often submitted by women from both the north and the south, and they reveal the wide variety of regional cooking that characterized american culture. there is a remarkable diversity in the recipes, thanks to the largely rural readership of godey's lady's book and to the immigrant influence on the country in the s. fish and game were readily available in rural america, and the number of seafood recipes testifies to the abundance of the coastal waters and rivers. the country cook was a frugal cook, particularly during wartime, so there are a great many recipes for leftovers and seasonal produce. in addition to a wide sampling of recipes that can be used today, civil war recipes includes information on union and confederate army rations, cooking on both homefronts, and substitutions used during the war by southern cooks.

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