Something Sweet

Staffordshire Oatcakes at Tynwald

by Christine Salins on April 1, 2014


During my recent visit to Tasmania to experience Sally Wise’s farm and cooking school, I stayed at Tynwald, a grand old Georgian house in the Derwent Valley. It was built in 1830s as a miller’s residence and was later given a tower, bay windows and lace work for a more Victorian look.

It’s still an incredibly imposing house that is somewhat lost in time, and I enjoyed walking around it’s beautiful garden dotted with ruins of the 1820 flour mill and grain store.

Current owners, Pat and Garry, operate it as a B & B and restaurant, and I was privileged to try their superb pork sausages, made just the day before from their own Wessex Saddleback pigs.

They also treat guests to Staffordshire oatcakes, a local speciality from the region in England where Pat hails from. (When I wrote this up for PS News recently, Pat very gently reminded me that Garry is 6th generation Australian!)  Tynwald Heritage Accommodation & Restaurant,  New Norfolk, accommodation in Tasmania, recipe for Staffordshire Oatcakes.

Made from oatmeal, flour and yeast, oatcakes are a bit like pancakes and a great base for sausages, bacon or cheese. They can also be served with jam or honey, but I’m told that’s frowned on by traditionalists.

Pat uses wholemeal flour for this recipe and although the instructions here require the mixture to stand for an hour, she usually allows it to ferment overnight.

Apparently, oatcakes were once sold directly from people’s homes through a hole in the wall, the last such business closing just a few years ago. The times they are a-changin’.

Fact File:

Tynwald Heritage Accommodation & Restaurant
Hobart Road, New Norfolk
Tasmania 7140
Tel: +61 (0) 3 6261 2667  Tynwald Heritage Accommodation & Restaurant,  New Norfolk, accommodation in Tasmania, recipe for Staffordshire Oatcakes.


30g wholemeal flour
30g fine oatmeal
½ teaspoon salt
1 level teaspoon dried yeast or ½ oz fresh yeast
450ml lukewarm water (more if needed)

Mix flour, oatmeal and salt. Dissolve yeast in water. Mix water with dry ingredients and stir until smooth. Cover and leave to stand for 1 hour. Pour one cup of batter onto a hot greased griddle or pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn over and cook the other side. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
Serve with sausages, bacon or cheese, or with butter and jam or honey.

{ 1 comment }

Guinness Icecream

by Christine Salins on March 17, 2014 recipe for Guinness icecream for St Patrick's Day

I adore good-quality icecream and today being St Patrick’s Day there can be only one flavour on the menu: Guinness!


Serves 1 to 2

135ml Guinness
135ml milk
225ml cream
25g glucose
125g caster sugar
5 egg yolks

Combine all ingredients except the egg yolks in a saucepan. Bring gently to the boil then reduce heat.
Whisk egg yolks in a stainless steel bowl, then whisk the milk mixture in with the yolks.
Place the bowl over a hot water bath and continue whisking until the consistency is like custard.
Strain through a sieve and allow to cool. Once cool, churn in an icecream machine. Alternatively, you can place the mixture in a shallow dish in the freezer, and freeze then churn, repeating a couple of times.


Baklava Celebrity Century Style

by Christine Salins on September 18, 2013 Baklava recipe from Celebrity Century 7-night Hubbard Glacier Alaska cruise.

One of the nice ways that Celebrity Cruises rewards its repeat customers is with its Captain’s Club program, which offers various benefits including special events on board, and free drinks and canapés at certain times of the day.

Cruising to Alaska on board the Celebrity Century, we enjoyed an afternoon tea and a wine tasting as part of the program. On our last day at sea as we cruised back to Vancouver along the Inside Passage, we were invited with other Captain’s Club members to visit the bridge. With Captain George Iatrou on Celebrity Century 7-night Hubbard Glacier Alaska cruise.Not surprisingly, this is a treat on big cruise ships where you couldn’t possibly have 1800 or more passengers interrupting the Captain and his crew as they go about their work.

So Alise and I were very appreciative of the opportunity to meet Captain George Iatrou and to hear some of the facts about the 815 feet long Celebrity Century.

Although Captain Iatrou lives in England, he was born in Greece and began his sailing career there, so in a nod to his Greek heritage, those of us on the bridge tour were treated to some truly sensational baklava. I managed to coax the recipe out of the ship’s culinary team via the delightful Captain’s Club hostess, Jonette, so here it is for you to enjoy.


18 sheets ready-made filo pastry
125 grams (8 ounces) unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
125 grams (8 ounces) chopped pistachios
2 tablespoons granulated (caster) sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the syrup:
340 grams (12 ounces) caster (granulated) sugar
110ml (4 ounces) corn syrup
310ml (10½ fluid ounces) water
1 tablespoon lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease a 17cm x 28cm (11 inch x 7 inch) baking tray with butter. Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan over low heat or in a microwave. Lay 10 sheets of filo pastry, one at a time, into the tray, brushing each sheet with butter before adding the next.
In a clean bowl, mix together the nuts, sugar and cinnamon and spread the mixture over the pastry in the tray.
Layer up the remaining sheets on top of the nut mixture, brushing each sheet with butter, as before.
Using a sharp knife, cut a criss-cross pattern into the top layers of the pastry. Place baklava in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes then decrease the oven temperature to 150C/300F/Gas 2 and cook for an additional half hour to 40 minutes, or until the pastry is slightly puffed and golden on top. Do not allow the top to burn. Remove and allow to cool slightly.
For the syrup, heat the sugar, corn syrup, water and lemon juice in a small heavy-bottomed saucepan and cook over a medium heat until the sugar is melted and a syrup is formed. This will take about 20 minutes.
Pour the syrup into the slits in the baklava and leave to cool. Cut into small diamond-shaped pieces and serve.


Related posts: Celebrity Century Hubbard Glacier Alaska CruiseCelebrity Arrives In Sydney.