August 28, 2017

Tasha Tudor Birthday Celebration 2017!

Hannah Bakes a Cake Much to Edward's Delight!
August 28th, 2017 would have been Tasha Tudor's 102nd birthday.

My daughter Sarah and I were so blessed to have Tasha for a friend.

Tasha Tudor's Birthday Celebration is more than just a one day celebration. It is, to us, every day kindred old fashioned tasks and the seasonal celebrations all throughout the year.

Tasha Tudor delighted, as we do, in refined, simple elegance, in a country way, and the combining of the every day old fashioned tasks as our ancestors did, with artistic skill that could be seen by the beauty in their accomplished results... such as baskets, clothing, gardens, pottery, textiles, furniture, food preparation,  architecture, and even their tools.

My daughter Sarah was the model for Tasha Tudor's illustrations of the little girl Kathy in "The Real Pretend".

We had many kindred interests in common with Tasha such as spinning, weaving, knitting, natural dyeing, dolls, corgyn, goats, birds, gardening (flowers, herbs, and vegetables), old fashioned clothing, boots and frocks,  fireplace and woodstove cookery, canning, sewing, quilting, old books, and the old ways of living.

These daily things remind us of Tasha.

How grateful we are to have been her friend and kindred spirit!

Hannah is using Tasha Tudor's receipt for "Becky' s Birthday Cake". She has gathered the ingredients which include Corgyncombe Dairy Goat Carmella Lucille's fine milk and butter, and Phidelia Finch's eggs. The small stoneware bottle holds vanilla.

Phidelia Finch

Corgyncombe Dairy goat Carmella Lucille's milk in a hand-thrown salt-glazed milk jug made by a friend. The little yellowware jar with the lid was a delightful find I bought at an antique store for $10 and it was full of nutmeg.

Hannah mixing the batter.

At the bottom of her cake tins Hannah adds Rose Geranium leaves to flavour her cake.

Creaming the butter and sugar, then adding the egg yokes for "Becky's Birthday Cake" from "The Tasha Tudor Cookbook". In the cake pan to the left are some scented Rose geranium leaves.

Hannah does her baking and cooking on a "Little Fanny" wood cookstove.
Tasha Tudor's doll Emma has a wood cookstove just like it!

The doors in front can open to enjoy viewing the fire.

At the bottom of each cake tin I distributed four leaves and then poured the batter atop the leaves.
Above, the baked cakes.

When I worked at a museum most of the other farm ladies went south for the winter. I stayed and taught fireplace cookery and other old fashioned tasks to school groups. Because the kitchen would get so cold at night, I was the one who took home the Rose geranium to winter it over 'til spring. One of the older ladies who I worked with told me about flavoring a cake with Rose geranium leaves in the bottom of the pan with the batter poured over.

Hannah has decorated her cake with Rose geranium flowers and leaves.

The Rose geranium leaves have imparted their rose flavour into the cake. Delightfully delicious!!!

Edward is delighted with the lovely cake that Hannah has made!

The old teaset is decorated with hand painted leaves that bear a resemblance to old fashioned Rose Geranium leaves.

Many doll bouquets are to be found in the small pewter sugar bowl.
Above, the doll sugar bowl holds a bouquet of Rose geranium leaves and flowers. The old receipt box was found with an old handwritten label. Receipt is an old fashioned word for recipe.

Tea and Rose geranium cupcakes in the Corgyncombe Garden of Herbs.

Hannah spinning wool on her double treadle spinning wheel.  She is a talented spinstress and she spins a very even yarn!

Hannah's feet at the treadles.

A regular sized double treadle spinning wheel at the Woodstock Vermont History Center's Dana House Museum. The wheel is much like Hannah's wheel.

My 4th great grandparents Elias Jones and his wife Esther (Dana) Jones lived in Reading, Vermont, a town adjoining Woodstock. Esther and those who lived in the Dana House descended from the the same founding Dana family of early New England.

Elias Jones, a Revolutionary War soldier, was a representative of the town of Reading to the Vermont General Assembly. In 1807 the General Assembly met at Woodstock, Vermont.

Tasha Tudor spinning on my wheel.

Tillie Tinkham has been the seamstress mouse for the dolls and critters at Corgyncombe for many years.
The Golden Thimble Society commenced as Tillie wanted to assist the Queen Anne English Wooden dolls with their needlework.

The receipts for the cake and ice cream are from "The Tasha Tudor Cookbook".
Corgyncombe Dairy Goat Carmella Lucille provided the cream and the milk used for the ice cream and cake.

Tasha Tudor in the garden at Corgi Cottage.
She looks so happy!

These are my own personal photographs of Tasha Tudor and her cottage.

Tasha's marble top cupboard where she rolled out her dough.

 The first time I entered Corgi Cottage kitchen Tasha was setting about making the evening meal. Tasha handed me the brass kettle (that is hanging at the end of the counter in the photograph above) full of carrots when I asked what I could do to help her. Perhaps it was because I was in Tasha's kitchen where there were so many wonderful things that I recognized from her illustrations, or the warm lighting in the kitchen, or perhaps it was being in the company of the keeper of Corgi Cottage kitchen......I looked up at Tasha and smiled and said "Tasha, your kitchen is so cozy!"

Tasha's kitchen.

Charlotte celebrating Tasha Tudor's birthday several years ago. Charlotte found a nice place in the shade to enjoy her tea, cake, and goat's milk ice cream. Her cake, decorated with forget-me-nots, is from The Corgyncombe Bakery and her goat ice cream is from The Corgyncombe Dairy.

Tasha Tudor's pump and sink.

The blue and white teapot that Tasha used for illustrations, on the stove, at the ready for teatime.

Tasha's wood cookstove.

Tulips at teatime.

Some of the photographs and some of the writings on this post are from previous Corgyncombe Courant posts that can be found here on the Corgyncombe Courant and from our web site and our previous postings elsewhere on the internet.

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Photographs, images, and text copyright © 2000-2017 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson. All rights reserved. Photographs, images, and/or text may not be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson.
copyright © 2017 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson