Tonight I attended a local Heritage Fair for elementary and secondary students at the Waterloo Region Museum. Since some of my favorite exhibits involved women’s history I thought I would make Lady Fingers using a recipe Margery C. Groff contributed to the 1906 Berlin Cook Book. And yes I know it is a tenuous link but some days I need inspiration to choose from so many interesting recipes.
In 1912, the year the town of Berlin became a city, spring meant an increased availability of eggs. The days are noticeably longer now and hens begin to lay eggs more regularly. Humans eventually figured out how to manipulate hens into laying eggs year round.
I creamed the butter and mixed in the sugar. I added the three medium eggs and the milk. I decided to use lemon flavouring and added a few drops. I mixed the baking powder with some flour. I kept adding flour until eventually I used three cups. I tasted the dough and it had a lemon flavour. I reached my first difficulty when a moulding board was mentioned. I am unfamiliar with moulding boards. I decided to flour my hands and simply roll small pieces of dough into the desired shape and size. I placed them on a greased pan and baked at 375 degrees for 10 minutes.
Margery C. Groff is elusive. I don’t see her in the 1901 or 1911 census and she doesn’t appear in the Waterloo Generations website under that name. Is she Margaret Groff? I speculated a bit more about Margery C. Groff of New Hamburg when I made her Potato Caramel Cake on Day 77.
When I removed the baking sheet from the oven I had one cookie that actually looked like a Lady Finger. They taste okay. However, I think I would add more lemon next time. This is an easy recipe to make so I consider it a keeper. A quick internet search revealed that a moulding board is probably what I call a bake board. Next time I’ll use mine and perhaps a few more of my cookies will ressemble Lady Fingers.
3 eggs, 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup butter, beaten to a cream, 4 tablespoons milk, 1 tablespoon baking powder, enough flour to stir stiff with a spoon, flavor with lemon or vanilla. Flour your moulding board, take a little piece of dough, roll with your hands as large as your finger, cut off in 4 inch lengths and put closely on buttered tines [sic]. Bake in a quick oven.