Ingredients: 3 ozs of castor sugar, the rind of two limes (or one lemon) grated, 1½ oz of flour, four whites of eggs (Indian.)
Method: Beat the whites of the eggs to a firm froth, stir into it the sugar and lemon-rind, lastly add the flour, and spread the mixture on a greased tin very thinly, about as thick as the back of a knife. Bake in a quick oven and cut into small pieces, or cut in long pieces, and roll up while warm.
The name ‘tronchines’ set me hunting. I found only a very few references to them in the usual sources, but was delighted that one of the first that did turn up was in a newspaper from my home town of Brisbane. The recipe, as you will see below, is essentially the same as the example in The Times of India. It was in a feature headed ‘Swiss Cakes.’
These are small thin cakes, available to serve with ices or stewed fruit.
Take 3 oz. of castor sugar, 1½ oz. flour, and the grated rind of a lemon, together with the whites only of three eggs. Whisk the latter to a stiff froth, stir in the sugar, and lemon rind, lastly the flour. Spread on tins, which have been rubbed with white wax, to the thickness of the back of a knife, and bake. Cut in squares before they are quite cold, and leave to stiffen.
The Brisbane Courier, February 15, 1911
I would love to find out more about these cakes. Are they Swiss? And what is the origin of the name – who or what is a ‘tronchine’? if you know them or cook them, please let us know.
Quotation for the Day.
When I walk into my kitchen today, I am not alone. Whether we know it or not, none of us is. We bring fathers and mothers and kitchen tables, and every meal we have ever eaten. Food is never just food. It's also a way of getting at something else: who we are, who we have been, and who we want to be.
Molly Wizenberg, A Homemade Life.