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Muscadines & Scuppernongs

Recipes
Links

Muscadines, found in the Southeastern states, are about 1 1/2-inches in size and have a large, tough outer skin. They don't grow in tight bunches like grapes, but in clusters of 4 or more fruits. They're commonly used in jams, jellies, wines, or any other recipes using grapes.

The muscadine is actually a native American grape, Vitis rotundifolia. When Leif Ericson or Bjarni Herjulfson discovered America and called it Vineland, they might have named it that because they saw a bunch of muscadine vines.

Where did the name come from? When the early settlers arrived in America, they were familiar with the muscat grape, which is a French grape that is used in making muscatel wine. And the word muscat derives from the Latin muscus, which describes the smell of a male musk deer. The early settlers called the sweet, musk-scented wild grapes that they found here by the same name as the sweet grapes they had known in Europe, and that eventually became muscadine.

The scuppernong is a greenish, or bronze, variety of muscadine. At first it was simply called the Big White Grape. During the 17th and 18th centuries cuttings of the mother vine were placed into production around Scuppernong, a small town in North Carolina. The name Scuppernong originally comes from an Algonquin Indian name, Ascopo for the sweet bay tree. Ascupernung, meaning place of the Ascopo, appears on early maps of North Carolina as the name of a river in Washington County that runs into the Albemarle Sound. By 1800 the spelling of the river had become Scuppernong. Soon the name of the town and river came to be applied to the grapes grown in the area. In this roundabout fashion, ascopo, the Algonquin word for sweet bay tree became scuppernong, the word for a variety of wild grape.

Recipes


Muscadine Ice
Muscadine Pie
Kirk's Muscadine Wine
Scuppernong Jam
Scuppernong or Muscadine Jelly
Scuppernong Wine

Net Links

Scuppernong Grapes
From Wikipedia, more information on scuppernong grapes, including a little history, health benefits, and more..


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