A Scottish Christmas

MY DEBUT NOVEL, A Dream of Death, will be published by Crooked Lane Books in April of 2019. The setting, a fictional island in the Inner Hebrides, reflects the metaphoric “island” in Buffalo, New York, where my Scottish grandparents immersed themselves in all things Scottish and dreamt of the “auld country.”

To celebrate, I’m posting two special Scottish recipes, the first from my grandmother and the second from her best friend. Both are amazing and straight from early 1900s Scotland.

Flora Campbell’s Christmas Yum-Yum Cake

1-1/2 c. large seeded raisins

1 c. dates, cut up

1 c. dried prunes, cut up

2 c. sugar

2 c. boiling water

5 T. butter

The night before: Put this on to boil. Simmer gently for 20 minutes. Cool.

In the morning add:

3-1/2 c. sifted flour

1/2 t. baking soda

2 t. cinnamon

1 t. cloves

1 t. salt

1/2 c. nuts (any kind; optional)

Mix with a wooden spoon, transfer to a loaf pan, and bake 1 to 1-1/2 hours at 350 degrees. Cool completely before slicing

Meg Murchie’s Scottish Scones

2 c. flour

1/2 t. salt

1 t. cream of tartar

3/4 t. baking soda (level)

1 t. baking powder

2 dessert spoons of sugar (about a tablespoon)

2 dessert spoons of butter (about a tablespoon)

1 beaten egg

1 c. buttermilk

Mix dry ingredients. Rub in shortening with fingertips. Add beaten egg and buttermilk. Halve the dough and cut into four pieces. Bake on lightly oiled griddle.

14 thoughts on “A Scottish Christmas”

  1. Maria Hanson says:

    This is SO EXCITING! I’m sitting here this afternoon, writing my first ever BSF lecture to deliver on Thursday. The first BSF lecture I ever heard was from you in the Columbus North DW class. What a gift from God that lecture was in my life.

    I love how God brought this blog post to my inbox today as I work, so I could thank Him for you. Only God.

    I can’t wait to read your book! And I’m excited to try your recipes.

  2. HOW EXCITING! This just came to my inbox as I am sit, typing up my first-ever BSF lecture. The first BSF lecture I ever heard was delivered by you to the Columbus North DW class. That lecture changed my entire life. Only God would bring you to mind today so I could thank Him for you today.

    I am so excited to read your book and try your recipes!!!

    1. Hi Maria! I am more thrilled for you. What an incredible privilege you have. And I trying to figure out how my blog showed up in your inbox. So glad it did! Now you are on my heart

  3. Love it Connie! Definitely trying the scones. I have an Irish scone recipe I like and wondering how they compare.
    So excited for the book. Let us know if we can order advance copies.

  4. Now I know where the name Flora came from! I’m going to try Flora’s Yum-Yum cake. Much like fruit cake?

    1. It’s a fruitcake for people who hate fruitcake. No citron (ick) and very moist and rich.

  5. Grace Topping says:

    Ooh, these sound delicious. I always find making scones a challenge (they never taste as good as the ones I’ve had in England), so I’ll have to try this recipe. I make an English Christmas cake each year for my husband. It calls for citron, or as it is called in England, peel. The trick to dice the peel very well.

    1. Our recipes are usually for baked scones, but in Scotland they’re always made on a griddle.

      1. Grace Topping says:

        I’m glad you clarified the bit about the griddle. I thought I was to put the griddle pan in the oven. LOL.

  6. Maybe not always put on the griddle, but that’s how my grandma made them.

  7. Thanks for letting me know about this answer to prayer! Can’t wait to read it

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