Appears in

The Farmhouse Kitchen

The Farmhouse Kitchen

By Mary Norwak

Published 1991

  • About
Many old country recipes specify the use of a bakestone or girdle, or recommend that dishes should stand by the side, or in front of the fire. These methods arose from traditional ways of cooking. Originally food in cottages and farmhouses was cooked on or in front of an open fire. Meat was cooked on a spit set just before the fire, and baked goods could be prepared on a flat suspended girdle or griddle. Meat, bread, pies and cakes were frequently taken to the village bread-oven for cooking, being baked on the floor of the oven when the fire had been lit and removed from it. A similar bread oven was built into larger farmhouses. Early enclosed ranges began to appear at the beginning of the nineteenth century, and these gradually developed with a hotplate at the side on which pans could stand. Subsequently an oven was fitted at the side of a range so that housewives could prepare baked savoury and sweet dishes as we know them today.