We have blogged before about our overwhelming love for The Great British Bake Off and it was, let's be honest, completely irrelevant to the archive. We just loved it. (We were early adopters! First Series!) But, imagine our joy when pastry week rolled round and the historical section concentrated upon the Clootie Dumpling.
The show may have gone to the isle of Mull to find out more, but the Clootie Dumpling is very well known in Orkney as these recipes taken from our Orkney Room collection will testify.
( Birsay S.W.R.I's version, 1979).
(Deerness S.W.R.I's version, no date).
( Taken from 'Favourite Recipes - Sandwick W.R.I. 1976).
(Orkney Hospitals' Recipe Book, 1984).
As you can see, the ingredients vary from Parish to Parish and kitchen to kitchen, but all end with the spiced and fruited dough being boiled in a scalded cloth or 'cloot' which has been generously coated with flour.
It made us laugh that it was deemed necessary to include four recipes from the two hospital kitchens which contributed. They obviously just could not decide which one was the best. Picture the scene:
Chef #1: "We cannat hae a recipe book withoot clootie damplin' in!".
Chefs #2,#3 and #4: "No indeed!".
Chef#1:(licking pencil) "Noo. To begin, tak 4 oonces o' margarine...".