Commentary and information about public safety and security, intelligence and counterintelligence, open government and secrecy, and other issues in northern Idaho and eastern Washington.

Location: Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States

Raised in Palouse, WA. Graduated from Washington State University. US Army (Counterintelligence). US Secret Service (Technical Security Division) in Fantasyland-on-the-Potomac and Los Angeles. Now living in north Idaho.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Sportin' Ladies' Fried Sidewinder

Looking for some unique dishes for your next soiree at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington, or the Snake Pit in Enaville, Idaho?

How about some Red Light Saloon Hushpuppies? Sportin' Ladies' Fried Sidewinder? Joy House Broiled Perch? Maybe a few Hooker's Row Boiled Milk Rolls?

"How," you must be asking, "could I possibly learn to prepare Madam Mary Ann's Pralines, Pioneer Prostitute's Roast Buffalo Hump, and Prairie Dove's Liberation Beaver Stew? And what's the story behind these tasty-sounding treats?"

Glad you asked. Look in cookbooks. No, not Betty Crocker's or Julia Child's or Wolfgang Puck's. Look in Jay Moynahan's cookbooks. He's written three.

  • Culinary Delights from the Red Lights: Recipes from the Bordellos and Backstreets of the Frontier West
  • The Prairie Pioneer Prostitutes' Own Cookbook
  • Soiled Doves Civil War Cookbook
On the off chance you've not heard of Jay Moynahan (you really must get out more), let me quote "About the Author" from each cookbook:

"Jay Moynahan is a professor at Eastern Washington University and the author of books and articles on criminology, art, prostitution and history. He has been researching and writing about prostitution on the American frontier since the early 1990's. His books on soiled doves of the frontier are published through Chickadee Publishing in Spokane, Washington."

Now, why didn't his bio include that he had also served temporarily as the town marshal in my home town of Palouse, Washington? His office at EWU has a picture of himself in front of the Palouse jail to prove it. Must have been an editorial oversight...

His cookbooks are really history books. Each recipe is accompanied by a one-page vignette that fleshes out the story behind the recipe.

Do you know how Hog Ranch Sunday Stew got its name? The explanation is in Culinary Delights.

And what dimmed the otherwise bright future of Civil War Captain Levi Bryte of the 3rd Virginia Volunteers? Soiled Doves Civil War Cookbook answers that and tells you how to cook Captain Bryte's Sweet Cookies (such a deal!).

Prairie Pioneer Prostitutes' tells us the town's name was really Klondike City, but a favorite dish there was Lousetown Oyster Cocktail. The recipe includes both oysters and good whiskey, but the author notes, "If good whiskey is not available, bad whiskey may be substituted."

All of Jay Moynahan's books, not just the cookbooks, are published by Chickadee Publishing in Spokane, Washington, and are described on his Soiled Doves website. Read down (don't scroll down, you'll miss some good stuff including the Delightful Dove link) until you see the author's picture, then click on it to get to the Book Sale page. They are very reasonably priced. They're also sure-fire conversation starters when your pastor, priest, or rabbi sees them on your coffee table.

Now, where can I get four pounds of boned beaver for that Liberation Beaver Stew?


Anonymous Richard Arland said...

William Lee:

We grew up together and I love you like a brother....am I now to understand you are developing a sense of humor? Great blog, Bill. I'm gonna mosie on over and check me out some Soiled Doves for myself....besides I a'gettin powerful hungry.

73 Dick

11:27 AM, April 22, 2006  
Blogger Bill McCrory said...


Thanks, and I'm sure Jay would appreciate it if you'd order some books from him. My post should probably have explained that you'll see more skin at the Coeur d'Alene beach than you'll see in the books. The stories that accompany the recipes are very interesting.

12:30 PM, April 22, 2006  
Blogger Dogwalkmusings said...

Reminds me of an old cookbook recipe from my Mom's collection for Squirrel Stew. First, kill a squirrel. So go trap a beaver, Bill. If you're really nice maybe Lisa will bone him.

12:56 PM, April 22, 2006  
Blogger stebbijo said...

Speaking of Soiled Doves -- there is a restaurant and bar in Hope, Idaho that has the name and comes with a rich history here

3:51 PM, April 23, 2006  
Blogger Bill McCrory said...


Thank you. I went to Albertsons and Safeway, and neither of them had it. Our local health food market threatened to call the police if I ever came in the store again with a request for beaver.

4:21 PM, April 23, 2006  
Blogger Bill McCrory said...


I've forwarded your really neat link on to Jay Moynahan. Even if he's already aware of it, I'm sure he appreciated your reading about his cookbooks and taking time to send the information along.

By the way, next time we have an INWBA meeting, I'll bring the cookbooks. He even autographed one for me!

4:22 PM, April 23, 2006  

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