Still on our theme of Queensland, History, and Food, today I give you some 1930’s cake recipes from Brisbane newspapers – because really, truly, I know that most of you like “doable” recipes, especially if they are for cakes.
From the Courier Mail of March 15, 1934, an nice idea for the Ladies who Lunch but who don’t want the oven to add to the Queensland tropical heat:
Chocolate Biscuit Cake
This is a novel cake which is much appreciated at tennis or bridge teas or at supper parties. It is made with pure Copha* instead of butter, and requires no cooking. It cannot be successfully made with butter. The method is as follows:-
5 ounces copha, melted but not allowed to boil, mix in to this ½ lb. sifted icing sugar, 1 heaped dessertspoon cocoa, 1 egg, essence of vanilla to flavour. Have ready ½ lb. of coffee biscuits, which should have been softened by leaving them out of the packet. Line a square or oblong tin with greaseproof paper, place alternate layers of themixture and the biscuits until the tin Is filled, beginning and finishing with the mixture. Stand in a cool place till set, and when firm cut in slicesThe striped appearance adds to the attractiveness of this cake.
* Copha is an Aussie variation on the Crisco theme, made from fully hydrogenated coconut oil. Indispensible for making (also uncooked) Chocolate Crackles, which are indispensible for children’s parties, and for which I must give you the recipe one day.
From the Courier Mail of February 1, 1934, the lure of a “perfect” recipe:
The Perfect Orange Cake.
One of the most delightful and easy to-make of modern confections is orange cake. It has an orangey sweet frosting, light tender layers, a fluffy creamy filling, all delicately flavoured with orange. Here is the recipe for a cake large enough to serve eight people:
Beat together until thick two egg yolks, four tablespoonfuls of orange juice, the grated rind of one orange, and half a tablespoonful of lemon juice. Gradually add three-quarters of a cupful of sugar, beating with an egg-beater. Fold in the whites of two eggs beaten until stiff. Then fold in lightly one cupful of flour, two teaspoonfuls of baking powder, and quarter of a teaspoonful of salt which have been sifted together four times. Put into a greased, deep round pan and bake for half an hour in a moderate oven. Split and put the cream filling between the layers and cover the top and sides with orange icing.
To make orange cream filling, melt two tablespoonfuls of butter. Add four tablespoonfuls of cornflour, the grated rind of one orange, one cupful of orange juice, and one cupful of sugar. Bring to boiling point and stir occasionally. Cook for 15 minutes over boiling water (in a double saucepan). Add half a teaspoonful of
lemon juice. Cool and fold in half a cupful of whipped cream.
Orange Icing: Boil one cupful of sugar and one-third of a cupful of water without stirring until the syrup spins a thread when dropped from a spoon, Pour slowly on to one egg white which has been beaten until stiff, Beat constantly with an egg beater until the mixture holds its shape. Then gradually fold in one egg yolk, half a teaspoonful of orange juice, and a little orange rind. Spread this on the cake. In making the icing, add the egg yolk very slowly until the right colour and consistencyis obtained.
The Courier Mail of February 8, 1934 realised that “To provide variety in the little cakes she offers her visitors is always an ambition of the capable housewife”, and to that end provided amongst its offerings this nice little variation on the cup cake them (but we would probably have called it “patty cake” theme back then?)
The ingredients required are 4oz. sugar, 4oz. butter, 6oz. self-raising flour, essence of peppermint, rind of one lemon, 2 eggs, and icing sugar.
Cream butter and sugar, add each egg separately, and beat; add the flour and grated lemon rind and a very few drops of essence of peppermint. Bake in frilled papers 15-20 minutes In moderate oven. Ice with glace icing, flavoured peppermint, and coloured green.
And finally, because the Through the Ages with Gingerbread archive has not had a new addition for some time, I give you the following, from the Courier Mail of April 26, 1934.
2 cups self-raising flour, half a cup each of butter and sugar, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon eachof cinnamon and ginger, 1 cup treacle or golden syrup, 1 cup hot water, ½ cup coconut, ½ teaspoon salt. Cream the butter and sugar together, add the egg, then treacle, sift in the flour and other ingredients. Add the water, beat till smooth and bake in a moderate oven.
Quotation for the Day.
I haven't trusted polls since I read that 62% of women had affairs during their lunch hour. I've never met a woman in my life who would give up lunch for sex.
When I was growing up in Brisbane in the fifties (it doesn't seem that long ago if you say it quickly!), my mother allowed us to pick our own recipe for a birthday cake each year. My absolute favourite was the Chocolate Biscuit cake, made from the recipe on the Copha packet. It would generally last for quite a few days in the fridge too. Thanks for the memory Janet!
I must say, it is always a pleasure to visit Janet. Interesting concept that Chocolate Biscuit Cake. I should check to see if there is something comparable in one of the old Crisco booklets.
Childhood memories come flowing back.........oh! it was so yummy!
I MUST try that orange cake!
It looks as if it would be a beauty.
What a joy to contemplate!
Thanks so much Janet.
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