My grandmothers (both the two I was born with and the two I acquired when I got married) were and are amazing women.

I remember fondly when I was little one of them baking and cooking for what seemed like the whole day. And when I got married, one of the best wedding presents was access to my husband’s grandmothers. They were both farmer’s wives who had not only the job of keeping a hungry family fed but a hobby and passion for truly magnificent and award winning baking.

On the passing of one of my acquired grandmothers, I ended up with a large number of her recipe books. These recipes were a mixture of items that really reflected who she was in life. Some are hand-written, recipes told over the fence between neighbours or scribbed out at rural shows and tried, tested and handed on, time and again. Others are cut carefully from magazines of the day and give an added insight into ‘womens’ magazines from times past. And thirdly there are those which are blatant marketing ploys; recipes done up in brightly coloured little booklets that are clearly providing recipes to the housewife in an attempt to get her to purchase whatever product they were selling.

But most of these recipes are lost in time now. We have mass-marketed celebrity chefs and ‘easy to cook’ meals available in supermarkets. Baking has become almost a forgotten art in some circles and making your own jam…forget it.

So, my goal here is twofold:

1. To relive my youth (and that of my husband) by recreating some of the most treasured recipes from our childhoods, and

2. To provide another chance for these recipes so they may continue to live.

I’ll be sharing this process and the recipes that are just too good to lose (and some that should never really see the light of day). I’ll re-work where needed but will be trying to keep to the original ingredients and method where I can.

Try them out yourself and let me know what you think. I’m hopeful that some of these amazing and oft-times award winning recipes will live again.