Friday, December 26, 2008

Favorite Book Friday

Reflecting on 2008, my Favorite Book Friday choice is Illustrator & author is Tasha (Natasha)Tudor. Like Beatrix Potter, Tasha Tudor illustrated her books and others as well. Tudor, who illustrated such classics as "Little Women" and "The Secret Garden" wrote and illustrated her own as well. Sadly, it's been 6 months since she has left this world for her own "adventure" in June 18, 2008 at the age of 92, just short of turning 93 in August.
"Einstein said that time is like a river, it flows in bends. If we could only step back around the turns, we could travel in either direction. I'm sure it's possible. When I die, I'm going right back to the 1830s. I'm not even afraid of dying. I think it must be quite exciting." ~Tasha Tudor
She illustrated nearly one hundred books, the last being the 2003 release, The Corgiville Christmas. She received many awards and honors, including Caldecott Honors for Mother Goose and 1 is One.

Ms. Tudor frequently said that she was the reincarnation of a sea captain’s wife who lived from 1800 to 1840 or 1842, and that it was this earlier life she was replicating by living so ardently in the past.
In the words of Tasha Tudor's family:
Her Vermont home, though only 30 years old, feels as though it was built in the 1830's, her favorite time period. Seth Tudor, one of Tasha's four children, built her home using hand tools when Tasha moved to Vermont in the 1970's. Tasha Tudor lived among period antiques, using them in her daily life. She was quite adept at 'Heirloom Crafts', though she detested the term, including candle dipping, weaving, soap making, doll making and knitting. She lived without running water until her youngest child was five years old.

From a young age Tasha Tudor was interested in the home arts. She excelled in cooking, canning, cheese-making, ice cream making and many other home skills. As anyone who has eaten at Tasha Tudor's would know, her cooking skills were unsurpassed. She collected eggs from her chickens in the evenings, cooked and baked with fresh goats milk, and used only fresh or dried herbs from her garden. Tasha Tudor was renowned for her Afternoon Tea parties.
It was noted as well that she would not let females enter her home in pants only skirts and dresses.

Ms. Tudor’s favorite of all her books was “Corgiville Fair,” one of several she wrote about the Welsh corgi dogs she kept as pets, sometimes 13 or 14 at once.
The above rare photos were taken by Photographer Nell Dorr in 1940. I hope you do not get offended by the photo of Tasha nursing her child. I was so touched to see her nursing as I have nursed all my children until the age of 2, Ayla being the longest of a little over 2 and 1/2 years.

Receipt is the old spelling of 'recipe' and was always used by Tasha Tudor. As I end Favorite Book Friday and as a treat found in here, I will leave with one of Tasha's receipt from Jennifer her granddaughter.
Ginger Pennies
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp. ginger
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup Grandma's molasses
12 Tbsp. butter
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Soften butter. Sift together flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda and salt. Stir in, ensuring mixing. In another bowl, cream butter, brown sugar, egg and molasses. On low speed, beat in flour mixture until well blended. Scrape mixture into a large freezer bag and close securely. Cut off a SMALL piece of the corner of the bag. Pipe small dots (about 1/2" rounds) about 1" apart on lightly greased cookie sheets. Ignore any "peaks"; they will flatten as they bake.
Bake for about 5 minutes or until evenly browned. Cool the cookies on the sheets for about 3 minutes and then slide them off onto wire racks. They are small so be careful. You want them to crisp as they cool so keep them separate. This recipe makes about 25 dozen cookies!! You can store them in an airtight container for a long while but don't expect them to last very long!
Tip..I usually reuse my cookie sheets immediately, rotating as fast as I can. This particular recipe really needs the cookie sheets to be cool when you pipe your next batch on.
Ciao for now,

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