A few days ago at the beginning of Hanukkah I really wanted to make latkas/potato pancakes in honour of the holiday. I was going through Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens and came across Irish Potato Cakes that were kind of similar to the latkas I made last year. Well I just had to make them and see how they compared!
You need two cups of mashed potatoes which I made fresh the way I like them with some herbed cream cheese. To them add 1 beaten egg, 2 tbsp of butter (I used softened) and 1 tsp of caraway seeds. Beat until fluffy.
Sift in 1 cup of flour, 3 tsp of baking powder and 1/2 tsp of salt. Knead lightly until well mixed.
Roll out on a lightly floured board to 1/4″ thickness. Cut into wedges.
The recipe says to fry in a greased pan over low heat until golden brown, five minutes per side. With my stove, that means at least medium heat, no way these would brown on low heat.
Sprinkle generously with sugar as the Irish do and serve at once with plenty of butter. No butter for me, sour cream all the way and bliss! This is seriously one of the best dishes I have come across in a long, long time. I absolutely love the caraways seeds inside and my husband agreed too, this dish was fantastic! I give this recipe five out of five wooden spoons.
I could keep on recipe testing from Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens the rest of my life. There are recipes for candies, wines, cures and tonics… not to mention sharing the food history of the different people who have lived in Nova Scotia. I can see why author Marie Nightingale is known as Nova Scotia’s best-known food writer. Her two decades of writing for The Chronicle Herald as their food columnist is apparent in every page while keeping the authenticity of the original recipes’ spirit.
She even included the story as well as the recipe of Sally Lunns, the girl who peddled hot buns through the streets of Bath in England. Apparently this bread is a tradition in Nova Scotia as well, made into loaves as well as rolls. It was the first time I made a loaf of bread in a bundt pan!
As much as I would love to give this book five wooden spoons, I must hold back a little. This book will drive a new baker or cook crazy! Even though I have embraced the life of a foodie, even I found some of the recipes’ lack of instruction ridiculously frustrating. That said, I still adore this book.
Even if you do not have one single root from the Maritimes, you could learn a lot from Nimbus Publishing‘s Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens. I am absolutely fascinated with old recipes like rosehip jam, spiced gooseberries and rhubarb wine. This book is a gold mine when it comes to recipes of old. There is still so much to explore, I will hold on to this book as one of my kitchen treasures.
Making these fantastic Nova Scotia recipes has helped me connect a little more with this province through the universal ritual of food. I give this cookbook four and a half out of five wooden spoons.