Archive for the ‘baking soda’ Category

With 25th December just round the corner, I thought I’d post this newspaper clipping (probably from The Straits Times) which grandma stuck inside her notebook, right on the first page. The facing page has some notes dated 22 December 1957, as you can see here.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Christmas Pudding

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Here’s another Kraft Oil recipe – the ‘miracle oil’ of the 1950s which I’ve written about here.

This is basically a muffin method of combining wet and dry ingredients until just blended, as is used in the Blueberry Muffin recipe.

The directions appear to call for both baking powder (‘B.P.’) and baking soda (‘soda’) are called for here. According to Baking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America (p.75),

When a recipe calls for both baking powder and baking soda, the baking soda is used mainly to neutralize an acid in the batter, while the baking powder is the element responsible for the majority of the leavening action.

Applesauce Nut Bread

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This is yet another McCalls recipe.

The ingredients and techniques look very similar to the family-favourite Banana Cake recipe I posted earlier, although the quantity of ingredients looks different. There seems to be very little shortening here, whereas the other recipe is actually rather buttery and I’ve found myself reducing the amount of fat when I make it.

‘Shortening’ is specified here, which I take to mean a vegetable shortening such as Spry or Crisco. These days, you might not want to use hydrogenated vegetable oils like that because of the trans fats. You could use butter instead, which might produce a slightly different result.

Banana Bread

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“Pea-nut” as an alternative spelling is very cute :)!

Anyway, this recipe (which grandmother penned in turquoise fountain pen ink so is clearly from the 1960s or 70s) got me thinking about when commercial peanut butter became available. A quick check on the internet revealed that some of the popular brands today, Skippy and Peter Pan, were in fact first marketed in the USA in late 1920s and early 30s! However, in my extensive research through early 20th century Singapore newspapers, I’ve not seen any advertisements for commercial peanut butter in Singapore during those pre-war decades, so I think it might have still been a fairly novel thing when grandmother started baking these cookies :).

Which leads to another question: where did she learn this recipe from? My guess: foreign women’s magazines, such as the American McCalls magazine that is mentioned in other recipes in this notebook, or from expatriate ladies in the YWCA where she learnt her baking skills.

The recipe doesn’t specify what kind of shortening is to be used, but as I have discussed elsewhere, given the context of the times, I guess this would refer to hydrogenated vegetable shortenings such as Spry or Crisco.

Honey Peanut Butter Cookies

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