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Recipe For Sarah Nelson's Grasmere Gingerbread?


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My folks sent me some seriously wonderful gingerbread they discovered in the Lake District of England (Grasmere to be precise). Apparently, it inspired Wordsworth to wax poetic.

Does anyone know anything about Sarah Nelson's Celebrated Grasmere Gingerbread?

Does anyone have a recipe for it?

Thanks.

Neal

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Hmmmm well it looks like that specific recipe is a long kept secret. Perhaps someone has something similiar? I did find the website where you can order more :biggrin: for what that helps http://www.grasmeregingerbread.co.uk/ The website goes into the history of this gingerbread and lot's of other info including recipes you can make with it.

How is it different or better than other gingerbreads you have eaten?

Edited by Deborah (log)
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i have a little souvenir cookbook from england, titled favorite teatime treats. it inclues a recipe for grasmere gingerbread:

(and i paraphrase)

9 oz brown wheatmeal flour

3 oz. porridge oats

3/4 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

9 oz. "hard" margarine

9 oz. soft brown sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degree, or gas mark 3. Grease a shallow 14 inch tin. In a bowl, combine the flour, oats, bicarb., cream of tartar, and ginger. Cut the margarine into small pieces and rub into the dry ingredients until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar. Press into the tin and press down with a floured fork. Bake 20-30 minutes, until pale brown. While still warm, cut into squares, and leave in tin until cooled. Keeps well in an airtight tin.

haven't made it, but hope it gives you a starting point, and perhaps inspires poetry!

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

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I have a few of their cute little tins from past trips to Grasmere. One most go there, park the car and simply follow your nose. The aroma from the bakery permeates the air for miles around. Well, perhaps I exaggerate but it doesn't get much better than Grasmere Gingerbread and a hot cuppa in which to dunk it on a chilly day (as you can tell from the dunking note, this is not your American, cake-like gingerbread.

kit

"I'm bringing pastry back"

Weebl

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This group is the best!

Unlike the gingerbread I've had in the U.S., it isn't spongy or too gingery. It's the balance and the texture, which is firm but not hard. More toward the panforte end of the scale (with angel food cake at the other end).

<<I have a few of their cute little tins from past trips to Grasmere. One most go there, park the car and simply follow your nose. The aroma from the bakery permeates the air for miles around.>>

That's exactly how my folks found it. Though no one mentioned a tin. Hmmm.

Thank you for the response. I'll get to work on it -- as soon as I figure out what "hard" margarine is.

Neal

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Thank you for the response. I'll get to work on it -- as soon as I figure out what "hard" margarine is.

Neal

i was wondering the same thing as i typed, and my guess is "stick" margarine, rahter than "tub" margarine. it also occurred to me that the recipe sounds as though it makes a less cake-y, more soft cookie-like treat.

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

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i have a little souvenir cookbook from england, titled favorite teatime treats. it inclues a recipe for grasmere gingerbread

Chezcherie: Likewise, I own a copy of English Teatime Recipes by Carole Gregory – part of a delightful series comprising about 67 mini books published by J. Salmon Ltd. of Sevenoaks, Kent. The quaint historical etchings are fully appropos to the scope & themes of the books. I purchased 10 of these titles a few months ago. Sadly, Irish Teatime was not available, so my order was shorted.

The recipe you transcribed for Grasmere Gingerbread is printed on p. 32 of Ms. Gregory's collection; I would not, however, want to eat gingerbread made from any form of margarine! Moreover, as a point of distinction for bakers looking to substitute a N. American flour: Wheatmeal flour is not quite the same thing as wholemeal flour: the former has some of the bran blended into white flour (what I refer to as "white-wheat flour"), whereas the latter is richer wholewheat flour, as the entire wheatberry is ground into the finished product, closer to our stoneground wholewheat..

Edited by Redsugar (log)

"Dinner is theater. Ah, but dessert is the fireworks!" ~ Paul Bocuse

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I would not, however, want to eat gingerbread made from any form of margarine! 

redsugar, i completely agree. i would (and will, at some point) certainly sub butter, as well.

the little books are sweet, aren't they? i have three--favorite teatime recipes, favorite devonshire recipes and favorite farmhouse recipes. must have picked them up when i was in britain in '95...seem to have paid 99p apiece for them. so enjoyable to have this sort of culinary remembrance of places visited.

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

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I don't know if this is what you're looking for. The Baking Book by Linda Collister and Anthony Blake has a recipe for Grasmere shortbread and a picture of Sarah Nelson's gingerbread shop sign. What's the rules on posting the recipe in an edited fashion?

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From the Egullet's Copyright and Use Policy

Recipes and Copyright Law

A list of quantities of ingredients is not copyrightable. What is copyrightable is an authors original description of a dish or the process of making that dish. For example, I cannot copyright the idea of making a drink from 4 oz of grapefruit juice and 8 oz of sparkling water. I can, however, copyright a description of how refreshing this combination is on a hot summer afternoon. I can also copyright a detailed description of my favorite way to mix the ingredients together, and why I do it that way.

What Members Can and Cannot Do on eGRA

If you are like most eGulleteers, you like to play around with recipes when you make them. Perhaps you read three or four recipes for the same dish and then construct your own using ideas from each. Posting the results of such an experiment is clearly within bounds, and is encouraged.

Suppose, however, that you make a recipe with exactly the ingredients that appear in a copyrighted recipe belonging to someone else. If you post this ingredient list, along with your own description of how you made the final dish from the ingredients, then you technically have not violated copyright law. However, we prefer that you not make a habit of entering recipes in this way.

Basically, the ingredient list and amounts are not copyright-protected. A paraphrasing of the instructions is technically OK, but frowned upon (but I've seen it often). If you modify the recipe in any way it is more accepted.

Forum hosts please chime in if I'm not right.

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if you're looking for a recipe for a sticky cakey gingerbread, can I point you to this one, Nigel Slater's double ginger cake? It was Sunday morning, I was idly surfing the papers, had absolutely no intention of doing anything more strenuous than perhaps boil an egg, and this recipe propelled me down four flights of stairs in search of preserved ginger so I could make it. It was absolutely delicious (though from memory I left out the sultanas and just chopped in a bit more ginger). He recommends serving it warm with cream, but I let it sit for a couple of days wrapped up to go squadgy, and we ate the whole thing between five of us in one sitting.

Fi Kirkpatrick

tofu fi fie pho fum

"Your avatar shoes look like Marge Simpson's hair." - therese

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Jane Grigson's English Food also has a recipe for Grasmere Gingerbread.  It's a wonderful little book -- fun to read with some interesting historical recipes.

I always make my mother's birthday cake from that book--she likes the Ginger Cake. It's the dark, squidgy kind of gingerbread, and we eat it with Wensleydale for those that want it, or whipped cream for those that don't.

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I don't know if this is what you're looking for. The Baking Book by Linda Collister and Anthony Blake has a recipe for Grasmere shortbread and a picture of Sarah Nelson's gingerbread shop sign. What's the rules on posting the recipe in an edited fashion?

I'm fairly certain that, as someone said earlier, the exact recipe for Sarah Nelson's gingerbread is kept secret. However, a "shortbread" recipe may well be closer to the actual recipe than anything else I have seen. Grasmere gingerbread is definitely more biscuit-like than cake-like. It is fairly hard - and definitely lends itself to dunking. It is also fairly thin - a bit under 1/4 inch thick from memory.

Reading this thread is giving me withdrawal symptoms as I haven't had any Grasmere gingerbread in years! My parents used to live near enough to the Lake District that we could visit Grasmere at least three or four times a year...

Edited by JudyB (log)
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I don't know if this is what you're looking for. The Baking Book by Linda Collister and Anthony Blake has a recipe for Grasmere shortbread and a picture of Sarah Nelson's gingerbread shop sign. What's the rules on posting the recipe in an edited fashion?

I'm fairly certain that, as someone said earlier, the exact recipe for Sarah Nelson's gingerbread is kept secret. However, a "shortbread" recipe may well be closer to the actual recipe than anything else I have seen. Grasmere gingerbread is definitely more biscuit-like than cake-like. It is fairly hard - and definitely lends itself to dunking. It is also fairly thin - a bit under 1/4 inch thick from memory.

Reading this thread is giving me withdrawal symptoms as I haven't had any Grasmere gingerbread in years! My parents used to live near enough to the Lake District that we could visit Grasmere at least three or four times a year...

I've made the stuff in the Blake/Collister book and it is more like a shortbread. didn't really blow my skirt up at the time. Maybe I'll try it again. Speaking of gingerbread, I've been making a gingerbread and pear mousse cake at work. Yumm.

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Reading this thread is giving me withdrawal symptoms as I haven't had any Grasmere gingerbread in years! My parents used to live near enough to the Lake District that we could visit Grasmere at least three or four times a year...

If you *really really* want some, it seems you can mail order at the shop's website.

For anyone curious, there are little pictures of the actual gingerbread. They really do look more like biscuits.

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For those who are interested, I did make the recipe in Jane Grigson's book, and it looks exactly like the picture on the website, but I can't vouch for taste or texture. I think the recipe is 8 oz. flour or fine oatmeal (I used half flour and half steel cut oats that I ground up in my cuisinart), 4 oz. brown sugar, 1/4 tsp. baking powder, 1 T ground ginger, and 5 oz salted butter. You combine the dry ingredients, then mix in the melted butter, then spread in a pan and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. It's crunchy and a bit crumbly but not hard. Good dunked in tea.

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Your description sounds spot on, Amuse. Think I'll give it a try and see if it lives up to the original.

I won't be eating it with Wensleydale though. Some people in the town of the same name were once rude to me. I've boycotted the stuff ever since. I'm sure I showed them! :wink:

Could anyone post the recipe? Thanks.

kit

"I'm bringing pastry back"

Weebl

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