Taste and Tales of Cape Cod and the Islands

A cookbook with 150 irresistible recipes from Cape Cod and the Islands culled from inns, restaurants, bed & breakfasts and vintage cookbooks plus 80 entertaining tales, written and edited by P. Ann Pieroway with cover painting and illustrations throughout by Massachusetts artist Louise Minks.

Cape Cod Canal

In order to get the Cape Cod Canal dug, the Canal Company imported 500 Italian immigrants to build it. Finally, after five long years of exhausting and arduous work, the Cape Cod Canal opened on July 29, 1914, to a great deal of fanfare and horn blowing. In 1927, the U.S. Government took control of the canal and built the Sagamore, Bourne, and trestle bridges. In 1935, the Army Corps of Engineers widened the canal to 480 feet and deepened it to a minimum depth of 32 feet at low tide. Today, the canal carries over 20,000 vessels and 24 million tons of cargo annually and is considered the widest man-made sealevel canal in the world. Weary travelers who traverse the bridges every weekend only wish that they had built them wider.

All About Oysters

Oysters have been a staple in Wellfleet since 1665 when Jacobus Loper introduced the famed oyster to Boston. Originally the town was known as Billingsgate, after a famous fish market in London. In 1763, the Northern end of Easton formed its own government and named the town Wellfleet, after an oyster from the Eastern waters of England. Originally, the oysters were transplanted from Connecticut and the Chesapeake Bay and the oysters today are descendants of those. Many believe that the best oysters in the world are here in Wellfleet. The distinctive “Wellfleet flavor” is said to come from the “colder-than-average water and the relatively high salinity in the estuaries around Wellfleet produce clean-tasting oysters. The fastmoving tides along with a unique mix of nutrients and local phytoplankton add up to a plump oyster with a balance of sweetness and brine.” In mid-October, thousands come to the Wellfleet Oyster Festival.

Old Yarmouth Inn


30 large mushrooms

1 pounds unsalted butter

2 medium size Spanish onions, diced

4 stalks of celery, diced

2 ounces garlic, chopped

1 ounce fresh dill, chopped

2 ounces Old Bay Seasoning®

salt & black pepper to taste

1 cup lobster stock

1 cup sherry wine

2 pounds fresh local sea scallops, chopped

2 pounds (16/20 pound) uncooked white shrimp, chopped

2 pounds lump crabmeat, chopped

5 pounds broken Ritz® crackers

  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  • Snap off stems of mushrooms.  Sauté mushrooms in butter for 5 minutes.  Cool and set aside.
  • In a large braising pan melt butter and cook onions, celery, garlic, dill, seasoning; salt and pepper, about 5 minutes.
  • Add sherry wine and lobster stock; reduce by half, add scallops and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Add shrimp and cook for 2 more minutes then add crabmeat. Cook for 2 more minutes.
  • Mix in the crackers; use a little more stock to bind the mixture, if necessary.
  • Fill mushrooms with seafood mixture.  Place in baking dish and bake in oven for about 10 minutes until warmed through.  Serve immediately.

Cook’s Note:  Also use as stuffing for haddocks and other whitefish, or sprinkle over scallops, or use as a stuffing for lobster..


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