Thursday, November 3, 2011

All the Autumn's Joys ~Sunlight and Soul Cakes~

A few days late, but we finally have Soul Cakes baking in the oven as I type. 
And as promised, I have the recipe to share but first I want to back up a bit, and share the glorious Autumnal Sunshine that was slanting it's way into the dining room at sunrise yesterday morning.

Isn't the way the light sort of puddles in wonderful? It literally makes my heart beat faster.
Not even coffee wakes me up with the same satisfaction- though, coffee in hand while enjoying this? That is utter bliss!

 I can tell you my photography doesn't begin to capture just how beautiful this light is, but I'm glad I gave it a shot.

Anyway- so now we skip the day and head right to yesterday evening, just before our dinner guests arrived.
I had some help while setting the table, as you can see.

I absolutely love getting to set the table- especially when it gives me the opportunity to use my pretty things.

Like my vintage silverware with a 'J' for Jennie.

And antique gold-rimmed wine glasses.
No special occasion, just my aunt and uncle stopping by for dinner- but why have lovely things and not use them when we can?
Actually my Husband would answer this question with, "because they have to be hand washed", and that means he has to play dishwasher with them. 

Alright, so that was a bit of yesterday, and now to tonight and Soul Cake baking.
First things first- slip on your autumn apron and ignore the pile of laundry on the couch needing to be folded.

Okay, now head to the kitchen and gather these items:
1 stick butter, softened
1cup sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon extract
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon each of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup milk or more

Now, preheat your oven to 350.
Cream the butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl, then beat in eggs one at a time.
Add both extracts and mix well.

Okay, now sift the flour together with the spices- I used wheat flour, but I've used all purpose and spelt flours too, and they work as well.

Add the flour mixture a bit at a time to the butter mixture.

Get it well combined.

Now it's currant time- add those to the batter.

Then add the milk until you get a soft dough- I usually end up using more than the 1/2 cup called for.

Now form the dough into little 'cakes' and flatten them a bit once place on a well greased cookie sheet.
Bake them for 15 min or until just browning on the top.

And don't forget a live violin serenade while they're baking- it makes them bake quicker! ;)

Here is a batch right out of the oven. They need to sit for awhile on a wire rack . . .

. . . and then be transferred to a pumpkin- or other desired cookie jar- or your mouth!

We make these every year to celebrate All Soul's Day- November 2nd. 
It's an English tradition I learned of from the book Mrs. Sharp's Traditions by Sarah Ban Breathnach. 
I highly recommend this book- it is a treasure for anyone who values family and traditions.

A Soul, a Soul, a Soul cake,
Please good misses a Soul cake,
 An apple, a pear, a plum or a cherry
Or any good thing to make us merry. 
One for Peter, two for Paul
and Three for Him who made us all.

The lanes are very dirty
My shoes are very thin,
I've a got a little pocket
To put a penny in.

If you haven't got a penny
A ha' penny will do,
If you haven't got a ha' penny
God Bless You!


1 comment:

  1. Jennie, I. Love. Your. Blog! I swear you and I are soul sisters. Adorable autumn apron, really neat recipe and tradition, adorable violinist, gorgeous table setting... So cool!!!!


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