Aug 1, 2012

Feeding a historical costumer...

Yes, it is necessary to eat now and again when making historical costumes. And with that in mind, I'm planning what to make to serve in the tea breaks during my stays workshop this weekend. Though we will be making 1780s stays, I'm going to use the opportunity to prepare some items that I hope to take along to the Renaissance Dance Party on the 18 August 2012.

Shropshire Cakes

8oz (225g) butter
1lb (450g) flour
1tsp (5ml) rosewater
1/4 tsp (1.5ml) grated nutmeg
1 egg

Rub the butter into the dry ingredients, then work in the egg and rosewater to to form a very stiff dough. Cut off lumps of dough and mould into 1/4 inch (5mm) thick cakes, 4 inches (10cm) in diameter. Mark the top of the cakes into diamonds cutting halfway through the thickness. Prick a hole with a skewer in the centre of each diamond. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes at gas mark 4 or 350F (180C). Remove with spatula and place on a wire tray to cool.
Madame Susanne Avery. A Plain Plantain 

Spice Cake

3oz (75g) butter
1Ib (450g) plain flour
12oz (350g) currants
2oz (50g) sugar
1/2 tsp (2.5ml) ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp (2.5ml) ground ginger
1/4 tsp (2.5ml) grated nutmeg
1/2 pt (275ml) cream
1/2 (15g) dried yeast mixed with
1 tsp (5ml) sugar
1/4pt (150ml) warm water

For Glazing:
1 tblsp (15ml) sugar
1 tblsp (15ml) rosewater

Rub the butter into the flour, add the remainder of the dry ingredients and mix in the cream and yeast to form a soft dough. Leave to rise in a warm place for about an hour when it will double in size. Then knead and place 8in (20cm) cake tin. Leave to prove for 20mins then bake at gas mark 7 or 425F (220C) for 20mins, then for a further 1 hour at gas mark 5 or 375F (190C). Melt the sugar in the rosewater over a low heat and brush the glaze over the cakes immediately after removing it from the oven.
Robert May The Accomplisht Cook 

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