To cook is to be a sorcerer. – Alma Lach
Original quote from the front page of my first Recipe and Cooking Blog
Way back in 1996 I began putting my recipes online. Things were different then. The internet was still young. There were no blogging platforms. You needed to know how to write html and debug funny little errors in the postscript that was generated for printer files. There was no food porn. No photographs. Just words to describe your dishes.
Likewise there was no way of separating recipes into separate pages or posts. I maintained half a dozen or so large html files that linked back and forth from the index at the top of each file to the recipes contained below.
Updating was done monthly. It was relatively easy, compared to today’s’ necessity to take photos, edit photos, upload photos, write a story with each post. A couple of hours each month and a wealth of new recipes appeared. A front index page gave news of food and eating for the month, things to watch, things for happiness and joy. It told what I was cooking in previous years at that time, of correspondence with readers during the past month, of doings and seeings and trialings and so forth. I featured one ingredient, usually a spice, each month with some salient information about it. It also contained an index of every recipe on the blog.
None of it was pretty. Just html to generate pictureless files. But I loved doing it and people loved reading it. In days when cooking was not a fashion yet, it had quite a following, and I would email subscribers each month when the update was completed.
I folded the site sometime around 2005, no longer comfortable with having non-veg recipes online, and because I had continued to pay for hosting long after I moved away from that provider.
A New Blog starts in 2007.
In 2007, due to requests and my own longing to be thinking about food and food combinations, I began to blog again. That was on Aug 31st.
It has been a journey indeed, with my current focus on traditional Sth Indian, especially Tamil food.
To celebrate the birthday of this site and the so many years of blogging, I will begin posting those recipes from my early site. They are old and show a shift in fashion in our eating in the past decade and a half. But they are still delicious and I hope that you enjoy them.
Watch this site, and particularly its sister site, Heat in the Kitchen, for recipes from a forementioned time. I will post them as they appeared then. I do hope you enjoy. You can see all of the recipes that have been posted here.
Today’s recipe is Currant Mint Pastries from 1998. No measurements are included, best made intuitively. I loved these a lot. I hope you enjoy. Use butter and sugar to your taste.
Today I added a smidgen of orange juice to the currants to soften them a little. Use judiciously, you do not want soggy pastry.
The pastry is rather like a pie/tart or pasty pastry. It does not rise and has a body to it that you might find surprising. Feel free to play around with different pastries. I like them with a puff pastry too. If you stick with the shortcrust, remember that you don’t want your filling to be too dry. Use the butter abundantly or add some juice or fruit liqueur to the currents as you mix them with the mint. I particularly love the bite of shortcrust and the oft sweetness of the currants when the pastries are at room temperature.
I always feel like I am eating something forbidden when eating that mint, currants, butter, sugar mix. It really is heavenly.
Lovely with thick thick cream, even a berry coulis.
How did you guess – so easy! so yummy!
This is an old Yorkshire recipe.
short crust pastry
Heat oven to 200C.
Place a mixture of finely chopped fresh mint and currants on a thinly rolled shortcrust pastry. Sprinkle generously with sugar and add a few spots of butter. Fold over pastry to form a pasty shape. Sprinkle with sugar and bake in a hot oven until nicely golden.
Change your thoughts and you’ll change your world.