Mrs Beeton’s Adventures – Breads

Welcome back to my lovely readers, I thought I might go in a different direction this week, from my usual sweet bakes.

I don’t think you could find many out there that don’t love one of these delicious beauties heated with butter and lashings of golden syrup. Yes today I’m heading into the wonderful world of the golden crumpet!

The glorious crumpet is said to have originated in Wales and the earliest recipe was written way back in 1769. Originally cooked on a iron griddle pan over an open fire, which you will be relieved to know I won’t be attempting today. 😁 No need to ring the fire brigade, lol.

I started out with a quart of milk warmed, this is rather a lot so make sure you have plenty left over for your accompanying cuppa. A quart is equal to 4 cups or 1 litre of liquid. I then added 1/2tsp of salt and 1 1/2 ounces of yeast and stirred that up to froth. This recipe doesn’t actually give any quantities other than the milk so I used a bit of previous knowledge of breads and a bit of good luck.

When adding the flour you need to make sure the dough is more like a batter than a dough, so more on the pouring scale. Then I exercised a bit of patience, yes I know, I’m learning. 😁 Leaving it to sit for at least half an hour to rise and get all ‘bubbly’ (the technical term).

Now make sure you have more than one crumpet ring or you will be stood at the cooktop until your legs give way (gained from experience 😁). Spray oil is a fantastic invention to grease the rings before filling with batter, making them much easier to remove.

I cooked them in a hot pan until they were golden on both sides. When you flip over with a spatula you may get some oosing of batter, no problem, just push the ring down and this gets chopped off so they are all evenly round.

If you manage to wait until they are all cooked you can heat or toast them, or you can eat them deliciously hot off the stovetop with a cute little butter pat and some golden or maple syrup.

Please don’t forget to let me know how you get on with your crumpet adventure and don’t forget to tune in for more Mrs Beeton’s adventures!


2022-03-23T13:13:38+13:0023 March 2022|Bakes, Breads, History, Mrs Beeton's Cookbook, Vintage Kitchen|0 Comments

Mrs Beeton’s Adventure Dessert Biscuits

These dessert biscuits are fantastic for Holiday treats in the lead up to Christmas!


Halloween is over and I am definitely one of those Christmas fanatics – so bear with me here.

My latest bake is a lovely soft biscuit with a outside crunch and as Mrs Beeton says “With whatever the preparation is flavoured, so are the biscuits called, and an endless variety can be made in this manner”.  So go with whatever flavour your little heart desires – today I chose ground ginger to add to my biscuit batter to get everyone in the Christmas spirit.

As per the usual routine I started off with my ingredients set out ready to go.  The recipe needs; 1 lb Flour, 1/2lb Butter, 1/2lb Sifted Sugar, the Yolks of 6 eggs and flavouring to taste.  If your mind is blank as to options for flavouring here are some ideas – Cinnamon, Lemon zest, Currants, Ground ginger, Cocoa powder…let your imagination soar.  If you are feeling fancy, make half and half different flavours!

Soften your 225g (Yeah I know, it’s a lot!) of Butter and beat it vigorously until it resembles cream instead of butter.  I used my mixer for this so as not to wear out my arms this early in the bake, haha.  Then I added in the flour “by degrees”, which is just really a posh way of saying ‘a bit at a time’ until it is mixed in.  Then in went the icing sugar and the flavouring, and followed up by your lovely egg yolks (previously beaten until light and frothy).









Your mixture will end up a soft dough, but still be able to be moulded with your hands into tablespoonful balls.  This mixture made 5 trays of cookies, but you can reuse your trays after removing the cooked biscuits if you don’t have a neverending supply of cookie trays.  Grease and flour, or line them with baking paper – the reusable type is a fantastic save for the environment, it may be more expensive to start with, but in the long run it is worth it.

The cookies need to go into a ‘slow oven’ for around 15 minutes, making sure they don’t gain too much colour (don’t burn them – it does not add to the flavour, haha).  I put my oven at around 160 degrees Celsius and this worked well.

The average cost back in the day was apparently 1s, 6d to make these and you will get around 4 dozen biscuits out of the one dough.  This is why it is such a fantastic recipe to make and gift for Christmas, or pop it on the table to let the gannets help themselves as my family did.  I started out with 52 and now have one plateful left, that’s how moreish they are.  I think they would look super cool decorated with some red or white royal icing and a cherry on top.

I hope you enjoyed this bake and I hope you come back to visit me again soon.  I am over the moon with this fabulous new website and have to credit Yellow Banana Design for all their hard work.  Remember if you are a fan of YouTube also this recipe will be up to view on there very soon under Sweet Sensations NZ.




2021-11-10T09:04:39+13:009 November 2021|Bakes, Biscuits, Makes, Mrs Beeton's Cookbook, Vintage Kitchen, Xmas|0 Comments

Mrs Beeton’s Adventure – Stewed Ox Tail

So many recipes to choose from!

Where do I go for my next Mrs Beeton’s adventure?
I chose to not overthink things and go with a main which would naturally follow a starter in a meal, and as I already had the oxtail in the freezer from our local butcher, the Stewed Ox Tail seemed the obvious choice.

Skimming through the ingredients it looked like there was a lot less chopping involved in this one, another thumbs up from me. 👍🏻
After gathering everything I needed I dove straight into my second adventure with good old Mrs Beeton…

Hanging out on my kitchen bench were my Oxtails, 1 Onion, Mace, Black peppercorns, Allspice, Salt, My trusty herbs gathered in a bunch, Butter, Flour and Lemon Juice. The last ingredient I was unable to find in our local supermarket so decided to source a recipe for this via the internet, I have attached this recipe below for mushroom ketchup for those of you who would like to try it. It’s not too tricky and tastes great!

The first instruction was to divide the tails at the joints, which as my kitchen is pretty much devoid of any butchery equipment, would have been a bit of a tricky task. Luckily my trusty local butcher had already done this for me, ah, bliss! Then I simply had to ‘put them in a stewpan with sufficient water to cover and set them on the fire’

As we covered last time, the chances of me lighting a fire in the kitchen without an Aga were pretty slim and a little dangerous, I decided to use my good old slow cooker to make the meat lovely and tender over the 2 1/2 hour cooking time required.

After bringing the cooker to the boil I skimmed the scum (to make the end gravy clearer) from the top of the dish, added my onion chopped into rings, spices, seasoning and my lovely herbs, turning it to low heat.

My youngest and I used the waiting time to host an impromptu 80s dance party in the living room 😎🎶

Time flies when you’re having fun and before too long I was back in the kitchen ready to remove the tails and make the gravy.

I took some of the liquid out (as there was quite a bit due to the size of the cooker) and put it into a pot on the stovetop.

Mixing around 25grams of melted butter and a tablespoon of cornflour together I added this to the saucepan to whisk together, brought it to the boil to simmer for 15minutes until it was thickened and gorgeous. The next instruction was to strain through a sieve but there didn’t seem to be any lumps in my pot so I went straight to adding the tablespoon of lemon juice and teaspoon of my homemade mushroom ketchup.

I heated the lot through and poured it lightly over my dished up Oxtail. The recipe asked for it to be garnished with croutons but I was a bit pushed for time so quickly snipped off a garnish of fresh parsley.

The note under the recipe tells us that the average cost back then for this dish was 1-2shillings, according to the season and it fed around 8 persons.

The slow-cooked meat just fell off the bone and melted in your mouth, the addition of the mushroom ketchup was one I had never used before but was a refreshing flavour change!

The YouTube video for this cook is available to view at:

I hope you enjoyed my second adventure and will join me for number three.🙂

Thanks so much for following along!

2021-11-10T08:55:03+13:003 May 2021|Bakes, History, Mrs Beeton's Cookbook|0 Comments
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