Posted in baking powder, baking soda, cake, egg, nutmeg, oil, sugar, sweet, walnut, wheat flour on September 29, 2007|
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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.
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I love making muffins because they are so easy: wet ingredients in one bowl, dry in another, mix together quickly and you’re done!
Blueberries, especially fresh ones, are still pretty exotic in Singapore today, they must have been terribly rare back in grandmother’s time back in the 1960s. Which makes me think this recipe was another one copied directly from a foreign source, just as grandma did with recipes from McCall’s magazine.
Note also that the oil used is specified as Kraft brand oil, so perhaps this recipe was taken from a recipe distributed by Kraft? Food producers often published little pamphlets with recipes using their products, or included them on the back of labels and packaging – as they still do today. This was especially important with new food products in order to educate consumers as to how to use an ingredient they might not be familiar with. Indeed an internet search reveals many sources selling a 22 page booklet printed by Kraft oil in 1955, entitled 20 Wonderful Cakes Made by the New Kraft Oil Method.
What was so special about this new Kraft oil? An advertisement from 1958 (pictured here) gives us a clue: “So pure – so light – your miracle light touch for all frying, baking and salad dressings. LOOKS SO GOOD IT MAKES YOU HUNGRY Lighter crisper frying, baking and lighter tastier salad dressings with Kraft oil.”
I can’t find any information on Kraft oil per se on the official Kraft company website, but they do have a very useful timeline of commercial food products.
However, I still haven’t found out what Kraft oil is made from. This is a very important question, after all, today we are also very conscious about the oils we use when we worry about the percentage of saturated fats, monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, and choose between olive, canola, sunflower, soya bean, peanut etc oils for our daily cooking.
There exist industrial-usage kraft oil (uncapitalised ‘k’) and kraft oil paper; see for example the Handbook of Package Engineering – I’d really like to know if it is indeed the same product as this new ‘miracle’ cooking oil of the 1950s!
N.B.: “B.P.” = baking powder.
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