Category Archives: Muffins

Day 73: Lapland Cakes

I had the opportunity to go out for dinner after work tonight. It was a delicious meal but now I’m not hungry and so it is hard to select a recipe especially since it is getting later in the evening. I finally decided to make Lapland Cakes. I think they will be muffins since they appear in the muffin section of The New Galt Cook Book (1898) but the title is intriguing and quite unusual for this cook book. No one is credited with the recipe.

I beat 5 medium eggs with my manual hand mixer and then added 2 cups (1 pint) of all-purpose flour and mixed. I added 2 cups (1 pint) of cream and 2 teaspoons of salt. At this point I discovered it had been a mistake to mix the eggs and flour before adding the cream. My batter was a bit lumpy. Using semi frozen cream was also not a good idea but my fridge has been overactive lately. This means my dairy products are ending up close to freezing much like women in 1898 could discover if the milk man left their dairy purchases on the door step on a cold day like we had yesterday. I have vague memories of milk delivery when I was a small child and seeing the cardboard lid sitting on a cone of frozen milk. I didn’t know then that the milk had expanded as it froze in the glass bottle and so with no where to go but up the milk forced its way through the top of the bottle. My cream and milk are in cardboard containers so they had a bit of room to expand as they froze. Eventually I was able to use a spoon and beat the batter until it was somewhat smooth. This is a very liquid batter. I made a mess as I spooned it into greased muffin tins. I assumed that the muffin cups should be filled about 3/4 full. I put the pan in my oven preheated to 400 F and baked them for 20 minutes.

Laplander Cakes

Laplander Cakes

I expected very little from these Lapland cakes and wasn’t even sure if the time and temperature would be appropriate but they looked okay when I removed the pan from the oven. I put a few on a plate with some butter ready to eat.Lapland Cakes are a very different sort of muffin. Some of you will like them very much. I can taste a hint of egg but most people will find them a change from heavier breads and muffins. They are light and airy with a slightly crisp edge. They don’t rise much so you can fill the muffin cup nearly full. I imagine the texture depends on thorough beating of both the eggs and the final batter. Basically these are popovers and apparently another name for popover was Laplanders. I still don’t know what the people of Lapland in Finland have to do with popovers. What’s your idea?

Lapland Cakes

Lapland Cakes

Lapland Cakes are quick and easy to make. In 1898 it would be cheaper to make when eggs and cream were plentiful and less expensive. It is still a little early but I hear from my heritage agricultural friends that they have a cow to milk now and that a few hens are getting broody (wanting to nest and sit on eggs). Soon it will be spring! Consider making Lapland Cakes to celebrate and serve warm with butter and jam.

LAPLAND CAKES

Beat five eggs with a beater till they are very light and add them to a pint of flour, mix to a batter with a pint of cream, add a little salt. Beat thoroughly and bake in muffin tins in a quick oven.

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Day 47: Muffins

Today was one of those days where I really just wanted to skip cooking from The New Galt Cook Book (1898). This was my seventh day at work and a long weekend so I’m tired. But so were women in the 1890’s and they didn’t have frozen meals or fast food restaurants to fall back on. I’ll keep going. I’ve decided to make Muffins using Mrs. Hepburn of Preston’s recipe.

I wasn’t sure how to approach this recipe. I decided to put the dry ingredients in a bowl and then add the wet ones. I started with the two cups of flour, 1/2 tsp baking soda and 1 tsp cream of tartar. I added the 1 tbsp of sugar and 1 tsp salt next. I put 2 eggs in a bowl and stirred them with a fork. I melted the butter and added 1 tbsp of the melted butter and 1 cup of milk to the eggs. I mixed them together and then added the liquid ingredients to the dry ones. I stirred and realized I had a dough rather than a batter.  I went ahead and filled muffin cups with the dough. I baked them for 20 minutes at 350 F.

There seems to be just one Hepburn family in Preston Ontario in 1891. Therefore I think Isabella Stark, wife of William David Hepburn, is the woman who contributed this recipe. It is thanks to Waterloo Region Generations that I know her maiden name. William was a shoe manufacturer and the couple had three children.  Their only son died when he was 39 of chronic nephritis (kidney disease). The younger daughter married in 1891 and the elder daughter seems not to have married. It looks like Isabella might have died in the early 20th century while her husband lived to be 90 years old.

The muffins were okay. They were more like a tea biscuit than a muffin. There’s nothing wrong with them but there is nothing special about Mrs. Hepburn’s recipe for muffins.

MUFFINS
Mrs. Hepburn, Preston

One cup milk, one tablespoonful melted butter, one tablespoonful white sugar, one even teaspoonful salt, two eggs, two cups sifted flour, one-half teaspoonful soda, one teaspoonful cream tartar.

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