Now usually fat, circular sweet white wheatflour cookies either rolled in desiccated coconut or oats, usually with a cherry on top. MM's seem to originate, or at least to have been popularised, in advertisements and cookery pamphlets produces by the Be-Ro Flour Company of Newcastle upon Tyne.
Image: Rahul Khubchandani
Thomas Bell's grocery business, established in Newcastle in 1875, was one of the first to produce a baking flour with raising agents ready mixed-in. This 'Self-Raising' flour was ingeniously promoted from around 1930 with advertisements and leaflets containing receipts which remain models of clarity and reliability.
Original Receipt from 'Be-Ro' flour advertisements, beginning c1930, this one from Be-Ro in 2013
65 g (2½ oz) margarine
40 g (1½ oz) lard
75 g (3 oz) caster sugar
½ medium egg
1 x 5 ml spoon (1 tsp) vanilla essence
150 g (5 oz) Be-Ro Self Raising Flour
oats or desiccated coconut
1 Heat oven to 180ºC, 350ºF, Gas Mark 4. Grease two baking trays.
2 Cream the margarine, lard and the sugar until very light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and vanilla essence.
3 Stir in the flour and mix well.
4 Roll walnut sized pieces of the mixture into balls and toss in rolled oats or desiccated coconut.
5 Place on baking trays, flatten slightly and place a small piece of cherry on each biscuit. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
N.B. To help shape "ball" type biscuits, slightly dampen the hands.
Original Receipt in 'Taunton Courier, and Western Advertiser' - Saturday 11 February 1961
SOMETHING NICE FOR TEA
Miss Bond very kindly sends three scrumptious tea-time recipes. This reader also sends two useful savouries.
MELTING MOMENTS Two and a half ounces of lard, one and a half ounces of butter, three ounces of castor sugar, six ounces of self-raising flour, half beaten egg one ounce of rolled oats, vanilla essence. Cream the lard and butter together until fluffy, then beat in the sugar, and a few drops of vanilla essence. Work in beaten egg, and fold in sieved flour. Shape the mixture into balls, and roll in oats. Put on a greased baking tin. and flatten each a little. Bake in a fairly hot oven for 15 minutes.
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