16 Sep 2016

The Edmonds Cookbook rises again!

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm, 3:07 pm on 16 September 2016

For the first time in over two decades the Edmonds Cookery Book has undergone a revamp - soused trout is out and bliss balls are in!

Alexa says that over the years New Zealand’s favourite cookbook has changed a lot and she wanted to make this issue “the best of the best”.

So what is out?

“There were big international sections which – to be honest- really didn’t work anymore because people know if they go to a Japanese restaurant they're going to get tempura - and it’s Japanese, it’s not chinese, which it was [described as] in one of the early editions.”

And what’s in?

Of course plenty of baking (including gluten-free).

“Baking is a treat, baking is an occasional thing. We don’t have to live on biscuits. Also I think things can be small. We’ve got a bit of a gigantism problem.”

Ignoring the two-tiered slab that ginger crunch has evolved into, Alexa included the recipe she grew up using, for “a very thin biscuit with a very thin layer of icing”.

Also included are some recipes she says have ‘drifted out of the limelight’ - Elsie’s fingers, Dad’s cherry cake, a coconut loaf that appeared in the ‘50s and was dropped in the ‘70s, and mock whitebait fritters (made out of grated potato, egg and cheese - with poppy seeds for eyes!).

Previous editions have assumed quite a lot of prior knowledge about cooking and baking and the 2016 edition is more user-friendly with detailed instructions, numbered stages and an introductory description of each dish as found in most other cookbooks.

Alexa shares a 1923 recipe for Elsie's fingers and a new recipe for bliss balls.

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