Friday, 8 December 2017

Cookies - Doughnuts, Koeksisters, Shortbread and some other oddities from the English import ...



I joined a cookie blog hop site - now have no idea who set it up - hopeless me.  I'm in a state of flux ... for various reasons to be told at some distance time ... but one step forward and some just staying still ...

Jammy ones ... sooooo good!
Linda from her Roses to Rainbows blog has a wonderful post on doughnuts and how important 'looking at the right part of the doughnut' - ie being the optimist and not the pessimist - please check out the poems - good for us to read, to your kids/grandkids over the Christmas season ... 



Koeksisters

There are regional variations on the origin of doughnuts - most were developed from the Dutch explorers and immigrants ... 

I remember the English jam doughnuts ... as being very decadent and a very big treat ... then came across them a decade or two later down in South Africa - as Koeksisters ... 
American Holiday
Cookie tray


...the Dutch word "koek" for a wheat flour confectionery mix, combined with the American word "cookie", and "sister" to a tale of two sisters plaiting their doughnuts and then dunking them in syrup - I might say I read this first and second in fact as dunkin' their plaited hair ... ?? - so creating this iconic pastry.




Someone recommended I
read this book, which would
give me an insight into the
Vancouver of today
Enough of this natter ... I've driven to Victoria to hear a talk on the plight of the First Nations - informative information on a subject I know very little about.


We've been out to lunches, suppers etc ... Royal Legion ones ... where it's interesting to find some in 'takkies' and jeans ... others dressed up - yet with socks and shoes on ... so a mix of dress is allowable.


Immaculate course - the scrub
around somewhat contradicts it ... 
Just been to a Christmas lunch for the British Canadian social club at a local golf club - and I think earlier there was a social club lunch - I'm losing track ... I've been called - oh yes I know you - you're the English nipper ... and seem to be recognised by the English accent!




Santa visits here too - not
me - this was his elf!
I can't quite get used to getting up at much the same time 7 - 7.30 ... lunching at 12 and then supper at 5 or 6 pm ... BBC World News, Canadian News and Public Broadcast News ... not quite like the British Beeb, or Channel 4 tv (- that I preferred) ... is on at 5 and at 6 .... 


... we have snow on the mountain and thick frosts - so the cold weather is a-coming ... I know in England storm Caroline is doing its 'thing'!



A brochure for 'Visit Eastbourne'
popped up in my Reader ... this is a
gingerbread bandstand cake ... not
something I'd try! - but it looks pretty
and reminds me of home ... I forgot
to take photos of my shortbread
efforts ... 
We've been to the family for supper ... the in-laws are at the farm at the moment for a few days ... and we were down yesterday, when I made some shortbread - I know one of the easier things to make - but I didn't think I'd be making 'cookies' - even if it was shortbread - to my surprise it was quite good.  I won't cook much up here - facilities aren't the easiest or the best ... let me leave it at that.


We are doing what we can ... when the snow comes we'll see ... 

The Cowichan Valley Citizen newspaper puts
out this 'Holiday Party Time' bulletin every
year with recipes and various Christmas songs

So not desperately exciting ... but we did drive round one of the local bays today ... and that looked beautiful - might do one or two more of those trips and next time stop to take photos ... 


The 'dos' have entertainment attached ... so lots of singing (especially the 12 days of Christmas), prizes, skits - all good hearted fun ... 



We've had a bit of this too ...
Enjoy all your build ups to Christmas ... I have two more posts coming up before I switch off til the New Year - one I wrote earlier in the year a very Christmas A-Z and then the Write Edit Publish one ... as Denise Covey said ... should be easy for you:  The End is the Beginning ... see my side bar for the image invite ... 


Enjoy all the build ups with family and friends, remember all who have less than us ... and just be happy and enjoy - til next week ...

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

56 comments:

sage said...

Welcome to this side of the pond... I haven't yet made my famous pecan/bourbon shortbread, but I will.

Elephant's Child said...

It is always a delight to see a post from you. I have never acquired the donut habit. However, I will be making shortbread. Later. I have discovered that if I make it too early it gets scoffed well before Christmas and another batch is needed.
Enjoy your time. And the chill.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

What a wonderful opportunity to experience this adventure. Some things might not be comfortable at first but they are different and an experience that you will think of later as a good thing, or at least a learning opportunity. I wish you all the best and hope you have the best time possible in this time of your life.

bazza said...

Hi Hilary. There was a medical programme on BBC, (either Michael Moseley or those doctor twins) where they determined that the WORST thing to eat was a combination of sugar and fats - the finger was pointed at doughnuts. Sorry to be a party-pooper!
It looks like you are having a great time over there.
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s seasonally adjusted Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Lynn said...

I do like a doughnut and a cookie - lovely post. I make shortbread and cut it up into bars. It's my church's "tried and true" recipe. My family and friends love it.

I think we're OK having a doughnut once in a while, as long as it's a treat and not every day (reference to comment above). :)

It sounds as if you are having an adventure - I'm intrigued as to the circumstances. I hope all is OK.

RO said...

This time of year many are in a festive mood, and it's another great reason to partake in goodies like cookies and donuts. That's an interesting bit of trivia tied to it all, which always fascinates me. Looks like you've been busy, busy, busy! Bring it all on - we love hearing all about your adventures! Hugs...RO

Out on the prairie said...

I love my pastries, especially jammies. MMMMM I made fudge and toffee yesterday to put on gift plates for my neighbors and friends. Need a few more goodies to go with it. My mother made doughnuts but I haven't tried in years, I have some very nice bakeries around. I travel 40 miles just to visit 2 Dutch bakeries for the exotic not found here.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Glad you're getting around and seeing the sites and enjoying the views.
I guess if the sisters were dunking their doughnuts, then that's why we have Dunkin Donuts now.

Jacqui Murray said...

That's funny you called it the "American holiday cookie tray". Does England not have that enticing collection? I used to make those. Now, there just aren't enough people around to eat it!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Sage - thank you for the welcome! That pecan bourbon shortbread sounds very delicious ...

@ EC - thanks so much - I've never acquired the donut habit either. Yes shortbread is the type of thing that easily gets guzzled rather too quickly ... so can understand you waiting before making up some batches; it thankfully isn't too cold yet ...

@ Arlene - there are lots of opportunities to be had - and there's a little more to the story than is being let on in the posts! But I'll enjoy it - and all grist to the mill, so to speak ...

@ Bazza - yes I can quite believe donuts are the worst - that's why I don't eat them ... but it was the 'optimist's creed' that resonated with me ... see Linda's blog link.

All is ok - partly what I expected ... but some definitely not - but I'm fine - thank you ...

@ RO - I enjoyed Linda's 'optimist's creed' post - worth knowing those blessings held in the donut, with those we don't have being in the hole ...

@ Steve - yes you're a good cook for your family, neighbours and friends ... you often tempt us with goodies you've made. I think my mother made donuts too - but quite honestly cannot remember ... but will happily have one occasionally from a bakery ...

The Dutch are excellent bakers ... and I know you enjoy being out and about ...

@ Alex - getting out to see a few things and I hope in due course to see more views etc. Dunkin Donuts have taken off - haven't they ... not my favourite - but can see why everyone gets enticed in ...

@ Jacqui - well that was how the platter was labelled in Wiki - so I called it that ... we don't (when in England!) do that sort of thing - make lots of different cookies/biscuits and set them out - perhaps ... but I have never seen it - equally it could happen and I've never been in that sort of place ...

Well that's right we don't tend to have so many biscuits and cakes around as we grow up ...

Thanks everyone - so good to see you ... I'll be trying to do some catching up today - cheers Hilary

Joanne said...

enjoy the Canadian snow. I bet they know how to handle it. Cookies, crazy times, and cold. Each moment brings a new view of the world. I'm enjoying your revelations. Stay warm!

Anabel Marsh said...

Sounds as if you have plenty going on - largely involving food! Now I want a doughnut, or at the very least a piece of shortbread.....

L. Diane Wolfe said...

It sounds like you've been doing a lot of good eating while you're there.

Suzanne Furness said...

Hi Hilary, it sounds like you are keeping very busy and having fun. Yes, very cold here today, even a few flurries of sleet - nothing like some parts of the country though.

Chatty Crone said...

Oh how I hate to admit this - but I love donuts! teehee

Janie Junebug said...

Everywhere you go, you keep busy and you're always learning new information to share with us.

Love,
Janie

troutbirder said...

Oh yes. I'm sure your in a good place for Christmas. I pontificated very late on your previous post how we had visited summer in all the Canadian Provinces but like BC and Vancouver Island best. We went their many summers from far away Minnesota...:)

Jz said...

Hey, I was standing in front of a cookie tray much like that one just this afternoon!

It's funny - we call those koeksister donuts "crullers"(a "staple of the New England diet") and upon looking up the etymology, I learn that the word comes "from early 19th century Dutch kruller, from krullen "to curl""
Now, the question is...,
are they curling dough or hair? ;-)

Kay G. said...

Whatever is happening in your life, stay positive!
Richard just got back from Eastbourne last night, he was there for his mother's 90th birthday. He saw something at the seafront and he has no idea what it was...I will put it on blog. Maybe you can identify it for us!

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Sounds like you're working in some fun things in the midst of all the changes! Interesting to learn more about doughnuts. I'd sort of assumed they were American because we do unhealthy foods so well here, ha!

Liz A. said...

You've been busy.

Now I want doughnuts.

Sue Bursztynski said...

Doughnuts are "traditional" at Chanukah, when you're encouraged to eat stuff cooked in oil, to commemorate the oil lamps lit in the Temple after the Greeks were kicked out. My mother used to make them, years ago, not very well, as they always ended up too dark. I think it's the only thing she can't cook well. I loved to buy them from a stand at the railway station in Footscray, a Melbourne suburb, where a Greek family made them for about thirty years, injecting each doughnut ordered with jam and popping them straight into a bag for you.

Sounds like you're having a great time in Canada - enjoy!

An Interview With Deborah Abela

Denise Covey - Author said...

Hi Hilary, how sweet of you to keep coming back for more at WEP and giving us shout outs. It's a great experience, isn't it? Thanks!
Now to doughnuts. All I know is every time we stop at what we call a service station between Brisbane and the beach, I have to self talk the whole time while I drink my coffee -- I will not buy a Krispy Kreme, I will not...and I don't. How completely unhealthy, but so attractive. Just looking at the display has to satisfy...LOL!
Apparently, doughnuts are the perfect blend of sugar and fat...which makes us fat, so no thanks!

Hope you're happy in your new abode...

Denise :-)

Patsy said...

A really fresh doughnut with lots of proper jam is lovely. It's probably a good thing for my waist that those on sale to me locally are poor imitations.

It's probably also best if I don't get involved in any cookie blog hops.There might be recipes and then I'd be in big trouble. Or big, anyway.

Pat Hatt said...

Sounds like you are getting around and enjoying the sights indeed. The time zone change can sure be a pain. Never one to get into the donut craze at my sea.

Andrea Ostapovitch said...

I'm not too sure what is going on with my internet today, but it seems to be losing my comments. So, if you get multiple, I do apologize.
Those donuts look delightful and shortbread has always been my absolute favourite. Happy Adventuring!
Andrea

cleemckenzie said...

Now you've done it. Doughnuts and shortbread all in one post. I can feel the pounds accumulating on my thighs just by reading your post. Of course, I must have one--maybe more--of each before the day is out.

May you and yours celebrate a wonderful and calorie-filled Christmas.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Joanne - when the snow comes I'm sure I'll enjoy it in some ways - others not so much! Staying warm another topic of discussion - so far so good ...

@ Anabel - it is very different and lots going on. Actually my shortbread was rather good - even though I say it myself!

@ Diane - there are a lot of meals to fit in! All good fun though ...

@ Suzanne - I am busier than I'm letting on .. but news on that for another day/time frame. Thanks for the weather update ... I'll have to check out your weather shortly ...

@ Sandie - doughnuts can be quite delicious and moreish ... I quite easily avoid ...

@ Janie - there's lots and lots to do here - so busy I be ...

@ Troutbirder - it's a good place to visit ... I was here briefly back at the start of the Millennium ... but hope to see more than the Rockies and BC - well more of all the areas.

@ Jz - gosh .. do they do cookie trays like this one - sounds good. Biscuits are not my favourites ... I'm a savoury girl ..

So your New England donuts are 'crullers' - fascinating name and another, as you've shown us, from Dutch ...

My guess is they are curling both - hopefully not at the same time!

@ Kay - I'm positive ... just slowly moving forward - we'll get there. I'll keep an eye out for the seafront surprise ... possibly one of the things I didn't quite understand either ...

@ Elizabeth - there's lots going on - with lots to do too ... and the doughnut etymology is interesting ... so much stemmed from the early immigrants in all countries ...

@ Liz - yes busy ... but no doughnuts ...

@ Sue - your doughnuts in Melbourne sound delicious - that's they way to have a baked goody - straight from the oven. Thanks though for the enlightenment re the Chanukah traditions ... something I didn't know ...

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Denise - WEP always throws me a wobbly .. not sure what I'll come up with - but it's great friends join in ... and I have to get to read EC's winning story ... moving countries doesn't help ...

Yes - thankfully I'm like you ... I don't succumb to cakes and bakes when out and about ... the look and remembrance of taste is enough - I can believe they make us fat ... I'll stick where I am ...

All well here - it is different and I knew that ... but we'll win ...

@ Patsy - I agree ... once in a while a fresh donut is positively delicious .. it's the once in a while that's important ...

I wouldn't normally do cookie blog hops - but food ones I'll cope with - but at the moment with things a little disorganised - this provided me with food for thought ...

@ Pat - certainly I'm seeing the locality a bit - a lot in the dark! It's not been the time zone thing - that seemed to settle quite quickly ... perhaps the one night stop over helped a lot. Donuts - I don't do either on normal occasions ...

@ Andrea - no worries re the internet thing - mine was down yesterday ... but looks like I only got one comment - thank you. Shortbread always tempts me ... so I agree there - a favourite to enjoy ...

@ Lee - sorry about the food, especially at this time of year ... they are so moreish ... I hope you enjoyed yours ...

Thanks re the Christmas wishes ... it'll be different ...

Cheers everyone and hope you all don't eat too many donuts or shortbread before Christmas ... take care - Hilary

Lisa said...

So where are you?! How fun to be traveling right now. I will be in the new year and am really looking forward to it! I didn't know donuts came from the Danish, haha! Thanks for dropping by my blog!

Linda said...

Hi Hilary,
Thanks for the shout out and link...much appreciated. Oh, and who doesn't love a good doughnut? Especially here in the home town of Krispy Kreme! ;) I am glad to see you are staying entertained and enjoying life (and cookies). Merry Christmas!

DMS said...

Sounds like you are having lots of fun. And looking at all those desserts and treats has made my mouth water. :)

I love that you are exploring the area and hope you are staying nice and warm up there.
~Jess

Deborah Weber said...

I remember with great delight the one time as a child I helped my grandmother make donuts and was allowed the very important job of cutting the dough with a glass. Best tasting donuts ever - just saying. :-)

Hope you find lots of joy in your adventure Hiliary.

Jo said...

Not quite the same as "at home" is it. Shortbreads come under the cookie heading. Have fun Hilary, relax and enjoy yourself.

A Cuban In London said...

I'm fussy about doughnuts. I have been known to send back those that lack the necessary quantity of jam in the middle. Tip: avoid Krispy Kreme doughnuts if possible. These are the doughnuts with the least amount of jam I have ever eaten in my life. The ones from Gregg's are a lot better. :-)

Greetings from London.

Robert Bennett said...

I'm a little mad at you now. My stomach just openly growled while reading this.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lisa - I'm on Vancouver Island ... I saw you were off to France - that'll be so good for your in-laws ... and lovely for you. Doughnuts - never a good thing at this time of year ... way too much else sugary stuff around. Good to keep up with you ...

@ Linda - pleasure re the shout-out .. your pearly-jammy words of wisdom from the delicious doughnut were good to read: look on the bright side of life. Is Atlanta the home of Krispy Kreme ... I think I'll leave it at that! I'm also trying to stay clear of too many cookies et al ... trying being the operative word!

@ Jess - there's certainly lots going on - while I'm not quite used to all that food but it's difficult to say no! I hope that I'll get out and about a bit more ... but may be more in the Spring ... and thankfully it's not completely frozen or snow bound yet ...

@ Deborah - I remember making cakes and biscuits ... but not doughnuts - that must have been so much fun for you and brilliant memories of your grandmother ... I bet those doughnuts were the best tasting ever - I'm sure I'd concur ...

@ Jo - everything's fine - just different ...

@ ACIL - if I ate doughnuts regularly I'd be very fussy - but I don't eat them if I can help it ... but thanks for the thumbs up for Greggs ... I still think I'll give them a miss ...

@ Robert - that's the trouble with food - one mentions it and then .. that's it - hunger sets in ..

Thanks everyone .. good to see you ... enjoy your Christmas build up - cheers Hilary

Murees Dupé said...

Koeksisters, a classic South African favorite. Have a wonderful Christmas, Hilary.

Truedessa said...

Enjoy your travels, it's always nice to read one of your posts. There are many doughnut shops around here. I try to stay away from them, but occasionally someone will bring them into work.

Nilanjana Bose said...

Gosh, I've missed a few posts :) all caught up now! Enjoy your time and your travels, and enjoy the preps. The jammy ones do look super, loved them as a kid. Have the most wonderful Christmas!

Juliet Batten said...

What a nice tasty post, and what an adventure all this new life must be. Your shortbread sounds yummy.

D.G. Hudson said...

Very interesting bits and pieces, Hilary. I used to make quick donuts for the kids when they were small, but not a big fan of them myself. I like scones better. I've made shortbread too and used a British recipe which my First Nations MIL had; you had to squish the ingredients with your hands and shape them into rectangles or circles. A lot of work. . .in years past I baked a lot and gave a lot away but now I only do a little the week of Christmas.
Hope you're enjoying the visiting and exploring.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Not sure, but it's possible I may have packed on a couple more pounds just by reading this post.

My mother used to make doughnuts years ago, back when deep frying was all the rage. (However did we survive all of the fat we used to eat on a regular basis... even (gasp!) lard!)

I used to do a ton of baking for Christmas, but not any more. No kids or grandkids nearby, and Smarticus and I don't need to scarf down that many calories. I will make us some, though... sugar-free, of course. (sigh)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Murees - I rarely had them when I was in South Africa ... but they are a favourite I know ...

@ Truedessa - I have to say I think I probably eat doughnuts if they're brought into the office situation .. otherwise I try and stay clear ... thank you re the thumbs up re the posts ...

@ Nila - it's easy to miss something that's going on in blogland ... and the build up this year will be somewhat different ... jammy doughnuts with plenty of time to savour them - delicious! Good to see you ...

@ Juliet - way too many calories here ... and the adventure is calorific too!

@ DG - lovely to see you again ... well before mixers: I guess hands were the order of the day for baking ... before cutters came along - we used glasses and saucers to cut pastry type things out before baking. Probably made the baking time more special ... took longer ... yes my mother used to bake a lot - I do so rarely now ...

There's lots to do here ... so next year I'll be more relaxed ... and in the new year we'll get out and about a bit more ...

@ Susan - oh yes foodie posts are always a challenge to read - without the desire to go out and eat somethings ... thankfully rather a long way from the shops now!

I remember the deep frying days ... chips! but we had an Aga so were lucky ... and could easily crisps foods up ... and lard - we used that too ... we used to exercise a lot more and worked up that appetite ...

You're so sensible not doing too much and I definitely don't need too many calories ... something I need to get to here!

Cheers to you all - and see you soon ... Hilary

Debby Gies said...

Sounds like you're having a wonderful time here in Canada Hilary. Enjoy your holidays with friends and family in Canadian style! :)

Sherry Ellis said...

Seeing all those donuts and cookies is making me hungry! I haven't even started my Christmas baking this year. The kitchen is under construction.

Is everyone on your side of the pond excited about Harry and Meghan?

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Debby - thank you ... settling in still - but we'll be over on the farm ... a quietish Christmas I think ... but one son, wife and children up here - so perhaps not quite so quiet!

@ Sherry - you're always so busy with your piano playing etc and the children ... fun times at Christmas - but lots going on. Wonderful to have a new kitchen - that's exciting ... good cooking in 2018 ...

I'm over here now - some way up - but here for a while ... so on the same continent -

Cheers to you both - enjoy your Christmases - Hilary

Silvia Villalobos said...

Always great to read your posts Hilary, the positive vibe, and I enjoyed reading about your travels and such, try to imagine the places you describe. They sounds nice. Calm, beautiful. That American holiday cookie tray, I think we have a similar one in the office. And one filled with brownies and more chocolate. It's that time of year when such gifts arrive. We're going to take most of them over to the fire station across the street. Those poor guys, fighting fires here in California for weeks, they would probably love some cookies/brownies and the like.
Merry Christmas, and if I don't see you till then, Happy New Year. Let's hope and pray for a good one.

Vallypee said...

What a lovely, lively post, Hilary! I love how you still use the word takkies! I cannot get used to using anything else either! It sounds as if you’re having a lovely time and absorbing everything fully! I never realised all these doughnut variations originated in the Netherlands! Happy Christmas to you in Canada!

RO said...

Just popping over to check out these goodies again! Hugs...RO

Elsie Amata said...

You had me at jam doughnuts or in my corner of the world, jelly doughnuts. Oh my gosh, so yummy and delicious and now I want to run out go get some!!!!! :)

Have a beachy week!
Elsie

Blogoratti said...

Really wonderful thoughts well put together, thanks for sharing it all. Greetings!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Silvia - I'll be looking around a lot more I expect - at the moment settling in - allowing Jenny and I both time to adjust to the situation. Canada is gentler and they seem to have more time.

I've been eating rather too much and try and avoid the cookies - but will enjoy some over Christmas. Oh that's good that you can give some sustenance to the fire fighters - those fires are horrendous .... I feel for the fighters and those whose homes are in the way... desperate times.

Thanks - you too re having a lovely time over Christmas and the New Year ... yes a very good peaceful one needed in 2018.

@ Val - I know some words we don't forget - glad you recognised 'them'! It's always interested me the origin of words ... and just reminds us how far so many have travelled over time taking their traditions and cultures with them ...

@ RO - thanks for the extra visit ...

@ Elsie - it's so interesting how we have different descriptive words ... jam or jelly ... something I try not to eat - shortbread I succumb to occasionally ...

@ Blogoratti - many thanks ... I'm adjusting to life over here ...

Cheers to you all - and thanks for visiting - enjoy these last ten days towards the Christmas season - Hilary

Pamela Wright said...

Really interesting facts about donuts, but not sure I'd like to try the hair that had been deep fried. It's so interesting getting used to a new country and all the differences and similarities.
Have a really great week.

Lynda Dietz said...

I always say I'm going to make donuts "someday soon" and my kids keep asking when. Truth is, when my hubby and I were first married, no children, I got a hold of my late grandma's donut recipe for a "small" batch and it made five dozen! We ate them, gave them away, fed stray animals . . . now, I'm a much better baker with yeast doughs and would probably do them justice (and would know enough by the measurements that I should cut the recipe in half). But they take so much effort that I will have to talk myself into it.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Pam - a late reply ... donuts are always interesting!

@ Lynda - not easy to make ... I think a trip to the shops would be the best! Lovely to have your grandmother's recipe though ... what fun to pass on ...

Apologies for delay - cheers Hilary