2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup water
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
Flavors and colors to taste: few drops of peppermint, raspberry, orange, lemon or
Heat the sugar and water until the sugar is dissolved. When
just about to boil, add the cream of tartar and then boil without stirring until it
reaches 250 degrees or until it forms a hard ball in cold water. Take from the heat and
add the flavoring and coloring you wish.
Pour onto a buttered marble slab or a buttered platter. Cool
slightly and turn the edges to the center with an oiled scraper, but do not stir. When
cool enough to handle, dust it with confectioners sugar, and "pull" it evenly
and quickly, taking care not to twist it, until it becomes opaque and dull.
This should be done in a warm room or near a heater or the
candy becomes stiff too quickly. Draw out the candy into strips and cut with oiled
scissors into 1" or 2" pieces. Leave in a warm room on oiled paper for at least
24 hours. The rock will become powdery and soft. It can be stored in an airtight tin. If
the candy is still sticky, it hasnt been pulled enough.
Swiss Milk Tablet
This is kind of like a milky, sugary fudge that some other
people's mother's used to make when I was growing up in Scotland my Granny never
did make this, but always brought plenty home as tips from regular customers who bought
their variety show tickets from her at the Palace, in the Nethergate. It was really good.
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 lbs granulated sugar
4 oz cubed butter or margarine
3/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract.
Melt butter slowly in pan. Add both milks, stir into butter.
Add sugar, mix well, don't let mixture boil until sugar is thoroughly melted, then bring
the mixture to a rolling boil for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent sticking.
Take pan from heat, add vanilla extract, beat with a wooden spoon until creamy, usually
about 5 minutes, and pour mixture into greased tray. Mark it for cutting before it gets
And if you want chocolate flavoured fudge, use chocolate
evaporated milk or blend in chocolate chips. Experiment. Mint chocolate chips are kind of
tasty but, remember, the chocolate makes this taste even sweeter almost to
the point you feel your teeth are going to fall out!
Speaking of trips to Edinburgh, I think the little girl in
the red duffel coat in the front row there was probably about 12 when this was taken. This
picture is taken in front of the Victoria Arch, down at the main bus terminus, on Dock
Street. I know I was going to the Harris with these kids see the blazer on the boy,
second row, last on the left? But I was still a tomboy.
I was a marbles player, and I didnt have anything to
carry my marbles with me on this swimming team trip to Edinburgh, so I had two loads of
marbles in my pockets. Cant remember if I came home a winner or a loser, either
swimming or playing marbles.
The man on the left is wearing his official coach blazer of
the Young Swimmers Athletic Union a Scottish organization, of course, with the
rampant lion. I had many happy years with this, and am so grateful to Mr. Hosie
hes the big grinning guy in the middle for teaching me to swim.
My children and grandchildren have all gone to swimming
lessons. But they havent learned how to swim like I learned. I remember the baths in
Lochee werent nearly so big as the main baths at the Docks. Mr. Hosie wore waders
over street clothes, and I dont remember ever seeing him in the water.
I learned to swim by wearing a kind of canvas belt around my
middle, attached to a rope, and Mr. Hosie, or some other adult, held me up and
"reeled" me in. That rope contraption somehow or other encouraged trust and
buoyancy, and before long I was swimming away breast stroke, crawl, and backstroke.
I still love swimming, and Im convinced it was because
there were dedicated adults in my life, volunteering, and teaching kids more lessons than
how to stay afloat or move through water.
Of course, I didnt know it then, but now Ive
grown up I understand. So, wherever you are, Mr. Hosie, God bless, and thank you.
By the way, Mr. Hosie, ran for election to the Dundee Town
Council and we kids hung around the voting place supporting him. Our chant was
"Dont be easy-osie," (that means uninvolved, sitting on the fence,
dont care, etc.) "Come out and vote for Hosie."
My mind is running right now, since this is the
"Sweetie" section to memories of the many, many little sweetie shops in Scotland
when I grew up. I was given a video of modern Dundee from Tommy Taylor, my friend living
in Canada that said theres only one sweetie shop left in Lochee, in Dundee. What a
shame that supermarkets have taken over the world. I remember getting a Saturday sixpence
and running down the stairs to the shop below to have the man there bring out the
"hapenny tray" and the "penny tray" so that I could carefully
pick out as many "bargains" as I could to take up to the house to savor. That
man must have had the patience of a saint as I pored over dolly mixtures, gob stoppers,
lollipops, horehounds, licorice allsorts to try to get as much as I possibly could in my
little paper cone. And I remember my Granny and my mother so many times enjoying my pride
in my display of goodies when I ran back up the stairs to tell them, "Look what I
got." And sometimes, I even had a few Keillors butterscotch.
Butterscotch from the Taste of Scotland book
2lb brown sugar
1 cup butter, creamed
juice of 1 lemon, or 1 heaping tsp ginger
Dissolve the sugar in a saucepan, and when liquid add the
butter and flavoring. Keep boiling, gently, stirring all the time for about 20 minutes or
until it hardens when a little is dropped into ice-cold water. Then beat very well for
about 5 minutes, pour on to a buttered slab or tin, and when cool mark into squares with a
knife. When cold and set, remove, and tap the bottom with a heavy knife handle to break
This makes about 2 lbs of candy, but it's so easy to get
Keillor's in this country, and that truly is the best butterscotch.
Keillor's had a bakery as well as a chocolate factory (where
my Granny was a chocolate packer) and marmalade manufacturer in Dundee. I remember
Keillor's Bakery as always having the best looking Dundee Cakes in their windows. The
other bakers in Dundee were Kidd's and Wallace.
At the Top of the Hill where I grew up, we went to Grey's
Bakery (even though I worked in the shop at Kidd's - Grey's was a small family owned
operation as compared to the big family owned companies of Kidd's, Keillor's and
Wallace's. I worked at Kidd's from the time I was 14 until I left school at 17. Grey's
really had the best meat pies.
Wallace's was known as "The Old Dundee Pie Shop"
and they had a restaurant, as opposed to a tea room, in Castle Street. I liked to go to
Wallace's on the occasions my mother could afford it and order their steak pie because
they really had the best puff paste pies, with lots of onions. For dessert I loved their
apple crumble (American's call it Apple Crisp) with hot custard.
Just up the street a few doors from Wallace's there was
Braithwaite's. This was a shop devoted entirely to selling tea and coffee. I remember
seeing the big wooden tea chests in that store and smelling the coffee beans they were
roasting. My, what a street of smells that was. There was another baker that came along
later, I think their name was Fisher and Donaldson. They made shortbread that was
different from the usual light brown large circles or petticoat tails - it was a real
toasty brown in small circles and I abandoned Paterson's for a while and made that my