Tuesday, October 11

you shall not need to butter your plates

for 5340 (yes, all I'm ever going to blog about for the rest of the year is grad school, just in case you were curious), I've chosen to research a seventeenth-century cookbook called The Queen-like Closet, by a woman many scholars cite as the first to have made a living writing books. neat, eh?

I was telling friend Chris the other day that this means my food-blogger-wannabe status is about to be intensified. I bet if they'd had blogs in 1670, Hannah Woolley (or Wolley, if you like that spelling better) would have been great at blogging. can you just envision the titles to her posts? the full title of the cookbook I'm studying is: The Queen-like Closet or Rich Cabinet Stored With All Manner Of Rare Receipts For Preserving, Candying And Cookery. Very Pleasant And Beneficial To All Ingenious Persons Of The Female Sex. woah.

here is her recipe for sugar cakes, as copied from the second edition of The Queen-like Closet, as transcribed by the people of Project Gutenberg. if you have a pound of sugar that needs something done with, I dare you to try it.

To make Sugar Cakes.

Take a pound of fine Sugar beaten and searced, with four Ounces of the finest Flower, put to it one pound of Butter well washed with Rose-water, and work them well together, then take the Yolks of four Eggs, and beat them with four Spoonfuls of Rosewater, in which hath been steeped two or three days before Nutmeg and Cinamon, then put thereto so much Cream as will make it knead to a stiff Paste, rowl it into thin Cakes, and prick them, and lay them on Plates, and bake them; you shall not need to butter your Plates, for they will slip off of themselves, when they are cold.

see? doesn't that read just like a recipe some enterprising young food blogger would post--including the wacky spellings? [searced--in case you are too lazy to put up with google thinking you mean "searched" when all you need is a seventeen-century definition of a word you've never heard of--means sifted.] it's so interesting to think about the evolution of recipe formats, and how there are so many different ways to write them. some people like the story-like instructions. some people like step-by-step details. and you are always free to write them however you want, as long as they make enough sense to be followed. hm.

alright. in an effort to make time for blogging this month, I'm going to include a short list of blogposts to come. any requests for which ought to come very next?

-things I've learned from working at the University Press.
-more photos of tech campus and environs
-additional food-blogger-wannabe nonsense (this time featuring bologna)
-the debut of writing group: texas edition


The Merrills said...

Amelia, you have me in awe. I love the topics you write about, and cooking/baking is definitely something I enjoy.
I just love you and love your blogs! Keep em coming :)

amelia said...

aw, thank you Mandy! I'm definitely trying to keep up the blog... deep down, I think it's too much a part of me to ever let it die. I'm glad you love it!