Lemon Cheese

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1 cup sugar.  2 lemons.  1 egg.  1 tablespoon butter.

Stir over gas until set.

Although Grandma doesn’t say so, the ingredients obviously go into a saucepan before being stirred over whatever source of heat you usually use, gas or otherwise.  Preferably low heat, I should think.

Can be used as a filling and is delicious on fresh bread or toast.


Melon and Ginger Jam

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This recipe is a bit confusing.  It was originally just “Melon Jam” but Grandma added ginger and gave it a tick of approval.  The original recipe was written in ink, Grandma’s tick and additional notes in pencil.  She doesn’t give any details about the ginger except for the quantity, and the number of lemons is not noted.  However, in my own experience of jam making, the lemon is there principally for its pectin, although I also like the way that it takes the edge off all that sugar, and makes jams a bit more tangy.  I use only the juice – one lemon for one pound of fruit.  However, Grandma seems to use the whole fruit.  I’ll try to sort it out as I go along.  It has already taken me about ten minutes to figure out the word “strew”, which basically just means “throw”, with a touch of “scatter” (or vice versa).

2 ozs green ginger to 12 lbs melon.  3/4 lb sugar to the pound.  Add lemons as well. [?]  [I suggest that we go with one lemon to the pound, but feel free to experiment.]

Cut melon [and ginger?] and strew about 3 cups of sugar over it.  Leave it over night.

Cut lemons and boil separately.

Boil melon [and ginger?] until nearly all liquid has gone, then add the sugar [and lemons?] and boil about an hour.

That’s it.  I don’t know why the lemons have to be boiled separately.  Possibly something to do with the pectin.  Grandma doesn’t say so, but obviously, the jam has to be bottled and stored in a cool, dark place.  Why don’t modern houses have cellars?


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Grandma added a teaspoon of mixed spice to this recipe, so she must have thought that this improved it.  It would have given it a slightly more exotic flavour than the original recipe.  There is no explanation – just the mixed spice added in pencil at the top of the page.

1 qrt of vinegar.  2 lb onions.  1 lb cucumber.  1 lb green tomato.  1 1/2 cups sugar.  1 cup salt.  4 tablespoons flour.  1 dessertspoon mustard.  1 dessertspoon curry.  1 dessertspoon tumeric.  1 teaspoon pepper.  1 teaspoon mixed spice.

Cut vegetables and boil with salt until tender.  When soft, strain.

Mix dry ingredients with a little vinegar.  Boil remainder of vinegar.  Add vegetables to it.  Then stir in the other ingredients and boil for a few minutes.

Grandma doesn’t say so, but obviously, you have to bottle this in one or more jars that do not allow any metal contact with their contents.  If the lids are metal, you must use a rubber ring, or pour melted wax onto the top of the pickles, like we used to do for jam to stop it growing mould on the top.  Do people still do that today?

Passion Fruit Filling

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1 tablespoon butter.  3 tablespoons icing sugar.  1 passion fruit.

Beat well together.

Cream Filling

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2 tablespoons butter.  2 tablespoons sugar.  2 tablespoons milk.  2 tablespoons hot water.  A little vanilla essence.

Beat butter and sugar to a cream, then gradually add milk then water and essence.

Foamy Omelette

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Beat the yolks of 2 eggs until they are thick and light.  Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, two tablespoons milk, then the whites beaten stiff.

Spread on a hot buttered omelette pan.

Run a knife along the edges and underneath the omelette to prevent burning.  Let brown well underneath.

Brown top by placing before the fire, or grill.

Fold carefully and serve at once.

Christmas Pudding

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Grandma wrote “good” in brackets beside this recipe.  Her Christmas Pudding was greatly appreciated by everyone who tasted it.  Traditionally served warm (or hot) with custard sauce, I prefer it cold, without any sauce.  I love its “skin”.  The original recipe used 12 oz plain flour.  Grandma added another two.

1/2 lb butter.  1/2 lb sugar.  4 eggs.  3 tablespoons brandy or sherry.  1/2 lb currants.  1/2 lb raisins.  1/2 lb sultanas.  2 oz peel.  14 oz plain flour.  1/2 teaspoon bi-carbonate of soda.

Cream butter and sugar.  Add well-beaten eggs gradually, then sherry (or brandy), sifted flour, bi-carbonate of soda and prepared fruit.

Boil 6 hours the first day and 3 hours the day it is to be used.

Grandma does not mention that the mixture has to be put into a clean cotton or linen cloth before being boiled.  The cloth must be tied with string.

Traditionally, silver coins, usually threepences and sixpences, were added to the mixture.  Some people still do this.  As these silver coins are no longer in circulation, they have to be collected again after Christmas from the people who found them in their pudding.  Of course, they are sometimes swallowed, which is why modern families often avoid using them.  If you do use them, they must be boiled for at least five minutes before putting them into the mixture, to kill any germs.

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