Yesterday was Fathers day and I was stuck as to what to get for my Dad. My youngest daughter said "Why don't you get him that thing you got a lady to make ages ago in that shop where she had lots of good food!"
Mmmmm, I started thinking and, although children have this knack of composing looooong sentences, she had managed to get enough information in it to remind me of what she meant.
Ages ago in Anstruther there was this fabulous little shop on the waterfront that sold amazing home made food. It turns out the lady was a farmers wife and had started her own cooking business. She had a selection of wonderful soups, mains and puddings, vegetarian fayre, fresh or frozen but all home made and additive free.
One day when we were in the shop I spotted a treat in the corner, now this treat has many variations according to region and family recipes, but this one looked good. What was it? It was a clootie dumpling.
My Dad loves dumpling and sadly not so many people make them nowadays. When he was young the dumpling would have been huge and lasted for several days in a variety of dishes, as a cake, served with custard or best of all fried and served with bacon and eggs.
So yesterday I made my first dumpling, lovingly prepared and cooked for hours before drying in the oven. I used the recipe from the link above and was pleased with the result, especially as I had managed to get a nice skin to form around the dumpling. I did not have a cloot, so according to tradition I used a clean cotton pillowcase, but it was not just any pillowcase I used one that had been my Grannys. I am sure that made all the difference!
Heres a picture of a slice.