Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Questions & Answers: Recipes Found

Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there someday. ~A.A. Milne

Today I have answers for some readers who were looking for lost recipes.

I've been looking for years for a recipe for hermits-soft cookies, cut in squares made with raisins. I'm also looking for a recipe for date and nut bread. ~Eileen

This is a good classic recipe to try:

Hermit Cookies or Bars
From King Arthur Flour

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup sugar, white or brown (or a combination)
1 teaspoon salt
2 fresh eggs, well beaten
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup dark, unsulphured molasses
4 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup dried fruit such as raisins, currants or chopped apricots
1/2 cup chopped nuts or sunflower seeds

Plump the dried fruit in a cup of water, and set aside. Preheat your oven according to the way you plan to shape the hermits: 375 degrees F for cookies or 350 degrees F. for bars or squares. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add the salt, eggs, buttermilk and molasses. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder and spices. Stir in the fruit and nuts. Blend the dry ingredients into the wet. For Hermit Cookies: Drop the dough by the spoonful onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake 12 to 15 minutes. This will make about 6 dozen. For Hermit Bars or Squares: Spread the dough in a large (13 x 18-inch) greased baking pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is firm. Cut while still warm.

I am looking for a recipe for Chester Cake which my mother used to make from old stale cake. It had pastry top and bottom and the old cake crushed in the centre. It was then iced on the top. ~Gail

Chester Cake

225 gram shortcrust pastry (8 oz)
110 gram plain flour (4 oz)
15 gram baking powder ( 1/2 oz)
225 gram stale cake, crumbled finely (8 oz)
175 gram treacle or golden syrup (6 oz) (or corn syrup)
Currants or raisins
pinch ground ginger
1 egg, beaten with 2 tablespoons milk

Line the bottom of a square baking pan with the pastry. Sift the flour and baking powder. Add the cake crumbs, a few currants and a little ground ginger. Mix with syrup, making a fairly stiff dough. Spread evenly over the pastry and cover with the remaining pastry. Brush with beaten egg and milk and use a fork to prick small holes to mark the cake into squares. Preheat the oven 200 degrees C or 400 degrees F. Bake about 20 minutes. When cooled, cut with a sharp knife, following the prick marks made earlier. Serves 12.

I have heard that in Scotland they stuff their chickens with an oatmeal stuffing. It isn't the flaky oatmeal that we eat, that you use for this stuffing. Can you come up with a recipe. ~Janet

In Scotland they no doubt use a good old fashioned oatmeal. One to look for is "steel cut oats". Bob's Red Mill sells it, and this brand can often be found in the baking section at the grocery store or health food stores. The recipe below is a good basic one to follow. Though I am sure the shortening is a substitute for lard when it was made long ago.

Oatmeal Stuffing

5 cups old fashioned oatmeal
1 small or medium onion, diced
8 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 garlic clove, minced
salt and ground black pepper

In a large bowl mix oatmeal, salt, pepper, sage, onion, and garlic. With a large wooden spoon work in the shortening, then half of the butter. Add more of the butter until the mixture forms a clump--it shouldn't be loose. Before stuffing your chicken or turkey use a fork to loosen the mixture so it isn't so packed together. Place in the cavity of the bird and bake according to directions on the poultry package.

On OFL we have recipes for barn raising food!

1 comment:

  1. I remember Hermit cookies! Thanks for that recipe!

    Ali @ A Cosy Life


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