Monday, July 23, 2007

Taffy Pulls and Tea Cakes in the 1920's and 30's.


In my childhood, we sometimes got together with the neighbors and made taffy or "pull candy" at our house.

Recipe for Old Fashioned Taffy (Pull Candy)

2 cups sugar 1/2 cup vinegar
1/2 cup water 2 Tablespoon butter

Bring to a boil, cooking until mixture will spin a long thread (or to 275 degrees on a candy thermometer). Remove from heat, add I teaspoon vanilla and pour into greased plates until cool enough to handle.

When the candy begins to "set", we would wash and butter our hands, take alittle ball of the hot candy (about the size of a small egg), and pull and twist, andsometimes plait it until it began to get cool and hard. Then it would be placed on abuttered plate and cut into sticks of candy.

Recipe for Mama's Tea Cakes

1 cup shortening 2 cups sugar
2 eggs 1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla 2 cups self-rising flour

Mix all ingredients together. Add enough flour to make a stiff dough, Roll out thin. Cut with cookie cutters and put on a cookie sheet. Bake at 400 until brown, about 8 to 15 minutes .

Often Mama made teacakes -- thick, chewy cookies cut out with a biscuit cutter or teaglass. As a special treat she would make a chocolate fudge frosting (made from scratch,of course) and put two cookies together with the chocolate between. These cookies shestored in a washed flour sack. No aluminum foil or plastic wrap on the market early on.

Mama baked teas cakes often for children, grandchildren and the neighbor's childre.

These teacakes were sometimes brought out and served to neighbors as we visitedon the front porch. Our house was usually the visiting place. The younger couples, whose oldest children were near my age seemed to love to congregate on our porch and visit.


Anonymous said...

You have made me hungry for some taffy or for your wonderful tea cakes. I do not remember your putting icing between two tea cakes.

I learned, when my children were small, that you can put food coloring in evaporated milk, brush that on the tops of the tea cakes before baking, and you end up with pretty, brightly colored tea cakes, without icing.

Back in the days when I was a good mother and worked to keep sugar out of my children's diets. When my children got to their teen years, I gave up on that sort of approach.

Debi said...

It will not really have effect, I feel like this.