Matriarch's legacy of cooking, sharing lives on in McLeod family recipes

features@beaufortgazette.comMarch 26, 2013 

Every year, the United Methodist Women of Carteret Street Methodist Church in Beaufort host a prayer breakfast in March. Members and guests sign up for prayer partners at the breakfast, and members share stories and information about the missions the church supports.

During the year, the women meet in groups to determine what projects to take on. One of the groups is named after Hope McLeod Foster, who was born in 1883. Hope, originally from Boston, moved to Port Royal and married Claude Eugene McLeod in 1903. Their first home was in Seabrook, the same house now occupied by Claude and Brenda McLeod. In 1911, they moved from Seabrook to a home on Bay Street, which is now the home of her granddaughter, Marjorie Fordham Trask. She was the mother of Claude Eugene McLeod, William Hardee McLeod and Marjorie Hope McLeod Fordham.

Hope's father-in-law, W.H. McLeod, was a founding father of Carteret Street Methodist Church. So it was only natural that Hope would become very active in charity, especially the Ladies Aid Society. Her three children also were dedicated workers in the church.

Hope was also a talented artist -- many of her paintings are hanging in Beaufort family homes today. She saw to it that family members would gather together for dinner on Sundays. Her table would be set with fine linens, silver and china.

Several years after the death of her husband, Hope married a physician, Dr. Clay Foster, who had come to Beaufort from Augusta. After Hope's death in 1948, the church group was named in her honor.

Each month the women of the Hope McLeod Foster Circle collect an offering for a special person in the church, as well as knit caps for an orphanage in Georgia.

The legacy of cooking and sharing continues in the McLeod family, whose recipes are below:

LACE COOKIES

Makes: 4 dozen

1 tablespoon butter

1 cup sugar

2 eggs, separated

2 1/2 cups raw oatmeal

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon vanilla

Cream butter and sugar. Add yolks of eggs, oatmeal, baking powder and vanilla. Beat egg whites until stiff and add last. Drop on buttered cookie sheet far apart and bake in 325 degrees oven until golden brown. The cookies will spread and look "lacy."

Source: Brenda McLeod

CHICKEN TETRAZZINI

1 1/4 cup angel hair pasta, broken in 2-inch pieces

2 cups chicken, cooked and cubed

1/4 cup diced pimentos

1 onion, chopped

1 cup chicken broth

1 10.75-ounce can cream of mushroom soup

1/2 pound grated cheese

Salt and pepper to taste

In a baking dish, mix the pasta, chicken, pimentos, onion, broth, soup, and half of the cheese; add salt and pepper to taste. Top mixture with the remaining cheese. More cheese can be added if desired. Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour.

Source: Hope McLeod Cappelman

BROWNIE CUPCAKES

4 squares semi-sweet chocolate

2 sticks butter

1 3/4 cups sugar

1 cup all-purpose flour, unsifted

1 cup pecans, chopped

1 teaspoon vanilla

4 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt chocolate with the butter. Add the sugar, flour, pecans, vanilla and eggs to the chocolate mixture. Fill tin foil cupcake holders half full of the mixture and bake for 25-30 minutes. Do not over bake.

Source: Marjorie Trask

All recipes are listed in the Carteret Street United Methodist Church Cookbook (2012).

Columnist Ervena Faulkner is a Port Royal resident and a retired educator who has always had an interest in food and nutrition. Email her at features@beaufortgazette.com.

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