Category Archives: John Kirkham

The Bakers’ ABC: N is for Neat’s foot oil

An oil obtained by boiling down the hooves of calves and sheep.  It is soluble in hot alcohol and ether. Used principally as a lubricant and for leather-dressing. This oil is not liable to change or become rancid. It remains liquid at below 32F.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: M is for Maslin

The name applied to a mixture of grain, or to a meal or flour made of such a mixture. The grains commonly mixed are wheat and rye, or wheat and barley. The two sorts are sometimes grown together in the same field, reaped together, and ground into meal together. The mashlin, mashlum, or mashlie was used in Scotland in the same way. Mashlum scones were in the regular diet, in the bread line of farm workers some sixty years ago.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: L is for Label or Lip Roll

A small Vienna roll, lip-shaped. The pieces are moulded round, hen creased in centre with the side of the hand, or a thin rolling pin; proved on a cloth, crease downwards, and baked with the crease side upwards.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: K is for Knife and Rider

This is the name of an old-time appliance, used in bread bakeries, for cleaning the tables at the end of a day’s work. If tables used for bread dough handling are washed, there is a danger of swelling the wood, particularly if it is soft, and raising the “reed” or fibres. The “knife and rider” cleans the tables perfectly, without washing, and keeps them smooth and free from splinters. The apparatus consists of any old knife, with the handle cut off, but with its sharp side straight.

Continue reading

The Bakers’ ABC: J is for Jigger

A small tool, one end of which is used or marking the inside edge of raised pork pies, the other end fitted with a notched wheel, for cutting strips of thin paste into bands or the pies, or for other purposes.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: I is for Isinglass

A form of pure gelatin, commercially prepared from fish bones. The best quality is made from the bladder of the sturgeon and other fish. It is white, iodorous and tasteless. Under the name fining, it is used clarifying wines, beers &c. It is an effective substitute for white of an egg in royal icing.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: H is for Hartshorn

An old name for crude ammonium carbonate; the name indicates that it was originally obtained from the distillation of horn shavings. Ammonium carbonate is much used still as an aerating agent in certain kinds of small goods under the name of volatile or “vol”.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: G is for Glauber’s Salts

The common name given to Sulphate of Soda, after a German chemist Glauber, who lived in about the middle of the seventeenth century. It is used largely in medicine. It has been used alone and in mixtures as a ‘bread improver’ . It has slightly astringent properties. Smeared on any surface mice are likely to attack, it acts as a deterrent.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: F is for Farl

A Scottish word, variously given in old Scottish as farle, farthel or ferl. Used to describe a fourth part of a round, flat cake, either of oatmeal or flour. The word is still in use in parts of Scotland and the north of Ireland, but is loosely used to indicate a whole round or scone as well as a separated part. The term was at one time confined to a description of an oaten farl, which might be one-quarter or more generally one third or a round.

From The Baker’s ABC by John Kirkland, formerly Head Teacher of National School of Baking, published 1927 by Gresham

The Bakers’ ABC: E is for Eccles Cake

A much-abused piece of confectionery because its centre so frequently consists of scrap and waste, which belie the enticing appearance of the outside. The skin or crust is made of puff-paste trimmings – that is, the dough is made up of pieces of puff-paste left after goods of other sorts that are very light have been cut out. The pieces for Eccles cakes are pinned out thin, washed over, and the filling for each rolled into a ball and placed in the centre. Each piece is gathered up pudding cloth fashion, and properly closed. It is then turned over, flattened and washed with egg, and three cuts made in the centre.
Continue reading