Recipe for Southwell Sewing Group Teacake

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From 'The Newark Cookery Book' (1890)

By Tony Clement

I came across this interesting cookery book, printed in Newark in 1890, this was a first edition, it claims to contain only well tried recipes.

S. Whiles printed the cookery book and they were based on Stodman Street in Newark in 1890, the cookery book must have been popular as it went to a second edition in 1910.

The recipe is number 341 and is the Southwell  Sewing Meeting Tea Cake, this was submitted by Mrs Shead from Southwell, who must have been living in Southwell in the mid to late 19th century.

This recipe contains some heavyweight ingredients and does not say how many people it will cater for.

It would be interesting to know if any relatives of Mrs Shead still exist in Southwell, if she was chairing the Southwell Sewing meeting it would suggest she was a person of independent means, there is a Mrs Shead listed in the 1901 census for Southwell, and occupation listed as woman of independent means, she was 64 in 1901.

Here is the recipe for Southwell Tea Cake if anyone would like to try it

2lbs Flour

1 ½ lbs. Butter

1 ½ lbs. Sugar

1 ½ lbs. Currants

2 teaspoons of Baking Powder

½ lb Lemon Peel

¼ lb Almonds

11 eggs

1 cup of Milk


Bake for two hours


These ingredients will make a serious amount of teacake, if the 11 eggs and 2 lbs. of flour are anything to go by, it seems like Mrs Shead was baking for quite a few people.

If anyone bakes this, it would be good to know how it turns out,  I would think it would be more of a tea loaf with a cake-like constituency, it does not say what heat your oven should be at, this could be quite low if going in for two hours.


This page was added by Tony Clement on 19/10/2021.

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