Next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday – the first day of Lent. I thought I’d observe the day by making Pateley fritters. I found the recipe in my recently acquired Yorkshire W.I. Recipe Book. Apparently, Pateley fritters were traditionally eaten on the Wednesday of Shrovetide (Ash Wednesday).
According to the introduction to the recipe:
‘Each day during that week was known by its own peculiar name – Collop Monday (eggs and collops, an old word for the slices of meat), Shrove or Pancake Tuesday, Fritter or Frutas Wednesday and Bloody Thursday, when black puddings were served.’
Two separate fritter recipes – both from Upper Nidderdale – are given, I found the other one already shared here.
Cakes & Bakes: Pateley Fritters
- 15g/½oz fresh yeast
- ½tsp sugar
- pinch pepper
- 450g/1lb plain flour
- 225g/8oz sugar
- 55g/2oz currants
- 55g/2oz sultanas
- 1 egg
- pinch salt
- little grated nutmeg
- 425ml/¾pt warm milk
- Cree* the yeast with the teaspoon of sugar and a dash of pepper
- Mix all the other dry ingredients together
- Make a well in the centre and add the yeast and enough warm milk to make a soft mixture rather thicker than a Yorkshire pudding batter
- Whisk in the egg
- Let it rise in a warm place for a few hours
- Drop tablespoons at a time into a hot, greased frying pan
- When brown on one side, turn over and cook on the reverse
The addition of pepper to the yeast whilst being creed is an old fashioned method of hastening the process.
*At first I thought the use of 'cree' was a typo. But it was mentioned twice. I looked it up on the internet and the only mention of the term I could find was: 'To cree (North-country) is to expand by slow cooking in water. To plim is the South-country equivalent'.
I then looked up 'to plim' and found: 'To plim. v. n. To swell; to increase in bulk.'
I personally wouldn't advise 'slow cooking' the yeast as anything over blood temperature would probably kill it. I think the recipe calls for it to merely be made into a paste and warmed in a bain marie/double boiler. If you know better - please get in touch!