Category Archives: West Indian Cookery

Peach cream

E Phyllis Clark  is described as “Former lecturer in Domestic Science, Government Training College for Teachers, Trinidad and Tobago, and Department of Education, Uganda”. This book was published for The Government of Trinidad and Tobago by Thomas Nelson, with the first edition out in  1945, (my copy is the 6th reprint from 1964). The price on the slip cover is 7/6 and is stamped in blue ink “Bought from The Voice Bookshop, St Lucia” – the kind of detail that sets the mind wandering.

There is a preface by R Patrick, Director of Education “No pains were spared in making the book essentially West Indian and practical, and much valuable advice was received from local medical officers, dieticians, and teachers and other in the various West Indian Islands. To all of these ladies and gentlemen, the Compiler would desire to tender her grateful thanks”

Clark authored several books and I assume they’re all written like this one – clipped tones and with an emphasis on nutrition, food storage and cooking techniques. This reader describes it well as providing “instructions on how to build a meat safe and how to construct a protected hanging basket for dry goods, as well as how to clean fish, pick fresh vegetables, identify vitamin deficiencies, and more”.

More being recipes for pregnant and nursing mothers, toddlers, invalids, ‘East Indian’ and Chinese dishes. The majority of recipes are divided method of cooking – frying, grilling, steaming. Irish potatoes are recommended throughout.

Writing up this recipe now is making me a little sad, I actually cooked this nearly three  months ago, on a beautful summer evening, warm enough to buy fresh peaches jammed full of flavour and then sit on the terrace drinking Pimms (n.b. not my terrace or Pimms), while the milk set in the fridge beyond what was recommended and then had to be whipped up before adding the sweet, sweet peach juice. Our pudding ended up a little less homogenously textured and a little less firmly set, more of a fool, less of a cream.

Despite lax timing,  it was a success – very simple, light and refreshing without being spartan and as the recipe states, you can vary the fruits and the sugar content (we skipped the sugar entirely).

Is it dark at 4 o’clock where you are? I’m 95% sure my next post will be a stew.

Peached by Elly