When I first saw the recipe for Yorkshire Cheese Pie in the Vancouver Sun’s 10th Annual Cook Book, I immediately marked it with a sticky note to come back to later. It’s nearly identical to curd cake, which was a dessert Mom made fairly often when I was growing up, so I thought I could have a recipe for the blog and a blast from the past, all in one go. Normally I use cottage cheese, as the recipe calls for, but when I saw big tubs of ricotta on sale for 97¢ each, I decided it was time to make Yorkshire Cheese Pie, and to use a substitution. Those housewives, back then, knew how to improvise and economize, and I’m sure few of them would be critical of my switch.
The ricotta didn’t require as much mashing as cottage cheese does, (I normally use the blender) so it was far quicker to make this way, and it didn’t affect the flavour or texture significantly. I’ve made this both with currants and nutmeg, and with raisins and cardamom, and both are delicious. The pastry I used came out of my 1938 Five Roses, and will be shared soon. I’ve also, in years past, made this with no crust at all, as a pudding, and that’s good too, especially when you’re serving it to gluten free friends.
I looked in my old family recipe duotang that Mom made up for each of us kids, and Curd Cake isn’t in there, so I can’t compare the two recipes, but they are very similar. I’ve also seen a recipe for Italian Cheesecake, I can’t recall where, which was also similar.
Yorkshire Cheese Pie
- 1 ½ cups cottage cheese
- 3 tbsp sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 eggs, lightly beaten
- ½ cup currents (preferred) or sultana raisins
- 1 grated lemon rind (no juice)
Break up curds lightly with a fork in a large bowl. Add sugar, salt, then eggs, lightly beaten. Add currents, lemon rind and melted butter. Pour into unbaked pastry shell and sprinkle top with grated nutmeg. Bake in hot oven (400 deg.), reducing heat to 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until nicely browned and set. Serve cold.
“This can be made into individual tarts as well. It’s a real treat and once tried, will often be used. It must be cold when eaten, as it’s flavour comes out better then.”
Grace M. White, 2353 Jefferson Ave., West Vancouver, B.C.
Grace is right, it is a nice treat, and a good make ahead dessert, since it’s best served cold.
The Vancouver Sun’s 10th Annual Cook Book starts by stating “Starred in this Tenth Annual Cook Book of the Vancouver Sun are the prize-winning recipes of The Sun’s own readers. Women from all parts of British Columbia – as the names and addresses under the recipes will testify – have sent to The Sun their most treasured recipes, with the hope that they would win one of the daily dollar prizes and so have their recipe published for the benefit of all readers who like to cook.
Because of the war-time newsprint shortage, this Tenth Annual Cook Book has had to be confined to 32 pages. When supplies are back to normal, The Vancouver Sun will publish still another Cook Book, larger than ever before. and featured again will be the most interesting of thousands of recipes received every year from some of the best cooks in the world – the women of British Columbia.
The book is undated, but published shortly after the end of the Second World War.