Bedfordshire Wigs

Preparation info

    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Farmhouse Kitchen

The Farmhouse Kitchen

By Mary Norwak

Published 1991

  • About


  • 1lb black treacle
  • 4oz butter
  • Good pint milk
  • 1lb plain flour
  • 4oz sugar
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½oz caraway seeds


    Melt the treacle and butter together in a thick saucepan. When the mixture is hot, stir in the mix. Put all the other ingredients into a bowl and make a well in the centre. Stir in the syrup mixture and blend thoroughly together. Pour into shallow round tins or one large tin, and bake at 350°F, 180°C, gas mark 4 for thirty minutes. The mixture will rise over the edge of the tins so that the thick rim looks like the curl of a wig. These were eaten on St Katherine’s Day, November 25th. St Katherine was the patron saint of lacemakers, and her day was considered in the county to herald the beginning of winter. Her feast was observed in many parts of the country. Somerset had Catten Cakes, which were wheels of spiced pastry with currants. (St Katherine was martyred on a wheel, so she is also commemorated by firework Catherine wheels.)