Welsh costume and recipes - notes intended to help with school projects.This picture (taken in 1913) depicts a young lady wearing the popular concept of 19th Century Welsh costume. The hat, made of black felt, has a high crown and wide brim, and is worn over a lace cap. This young lady wears a red flannel shawl over a crisp white blouse. The skirt is full and made of wool with a black and white check pattern. Grown up ladies would have worn a full length skirt, and a white starched apron. Proper Welsh ladies always wore black woollen stockings and black shoes. A basket, made from willow withies would often be carried.
(More detailed information on costume and the Welsh hat)
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What's for tea?Welsh Rarebit. Put two large tablespoons of beer into a saucepan. Add a tablespoon of butter, 4 ounces of Cheddar cheese, season with salt and pepper and add a pinch of mustard powder. Stir ingredients over a low heat until thoroughly hot (but not boiling). Pour the mixture onto slices of well buttered, freshly made toast. Brown lightly for a few moments under the grill.
Bara Brith (Speckled Bread). Ingredients: one pound white flour, 4 teaspoons dried yeast, 8 fluid ounces of milk, 2 ounces of brown sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, 3 ounces butter or margarine, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon mixed spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice), 12 ounces mixed dried fruit (sultanas, dates, etc).
Warm the milk in a saucepan until it is hand-hot, pour it into a bowl. Whisk in one teaspoon of brown sugar, whisk in dried yeast, then leave in a warm place for 15 minutes. Sift flour and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir in the rest of the brown sugar. Mix in the butter / margarine, stir in the mixed spice then pour in the beaten egg. Add the frothed yeast and mix to a dough. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (about 5 minutes). Put the dough back in the bowl and cover with a cloth. Leave in a warm place to rise until it has doubled in size (about one and a half hours).
After the dough has risen, knock it down to get the air out and knead in the fruit. Shape the dough and place it in a greased loaf tin. Cover with a cloth and leave in a warm place to rise again (about 30 minutes).
Bake in a pre-heated oven (gas mark 5, 375 degrees F, or 190 degrees Celsius). After 30 minutes, cover the top of the loaf with kitchen foil to prevent it over-browning, and continue to bake for a further 30 minutes. Turn the loaf out, cool it on a wire rack and brush the top with honey. Slice thinly and serve buttered.
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