Tuesday, October 4, 2011

In which old George is laid to rest (accompanied by completely unrelated pictures)…

OK so I somehow managed to disappear again last week.. sorry. I've been spending a lot of time trying to design the kitchen for the new house.  As with all things it is a balancing act between functionality, aesthetics and budget.  The major layout of the kitchen is fairly locked in and I'm 100% sure I want concrete bench tops but other than that the jury is still out.  I've been doodling ideas, shopping for appliances and pinning inspiration on pinterest.  You can check out my kitchen board to see where my head is at (incidentally if any of you aren't already on pinterest and would like an invite, shoot my an email and I'll hook you up)

A few months ago I bought the most beautiful vintage St George cooker with double ovens and warming drawers.  It was set to be the showpiece of the new kitchen.  It dated from the 1940s and came with the original manual.  I can't even begin to tell you how much I fell in love with it.  It was cream enamel with gorgeous emerald green knobs and any disadvantage there might have been from having a terribly old electric cooktop was far outweighed in my mind by the thought of dreamily dancing about my kitchen like Betty Draper cooking roly poly pudding (not that Betty ever actually cooked anything - so maybe more like Betty's African American housekeeper!).  By all accounts the ovens on these early model St Georges were some of the best ever made with fantastic heat distribution.  Sadly after visits from three different oven repairmen (including a lovely old gentleman who was a specialist St George repairman when these were new) we had to accept that the stove could not be repaired to an acceptably functional and electrically safe standard.  I've been going through a mourning period.  

I began the hunt for a slightly newer 1960s model (apparently the supermatic is the best vintage model to buy)  but after much deliberation and failing to find anything in good condition I came to the conclusion that maybe I needed a gas cooktop after all.  So I've made a leap and bought a much more energy efficient electric St George wall oven (relatively modern from the late 90s) and separate gas cooktop.  At $300 this was a splurge compared to my original 99cent spend but by any normal standards an absolute steal.  So functionality definitely won this battle over aesthetics.

So in loving memory of the old St George I give you the recipe for roly poly pudding from the original St George Master De-Luxe manual (strap yourselves in - it uses suet!!)


1 lb. flour
1/2 lb. suet
1 teaspoon baking powder
big pinch salt
jam (to taste)

Method: Mix flour, chopped suet, baking powder and salt together, add a little cold water, roll dough into a long piece about 1/4 inch thick.  Spread jam on, moisten edges and roll up lightly.  Wet edges and seal up ends, wrap the pudding in a scalded cloth and secure ends with string.  Boil 1 1/2 to 2 hours.


  1. I know someone whose favourite childhood memory is jam roly poly with pink custard - best dessert on his school dinner menu circa 1950! Also, the lady on the cover picture is what a mother was meant to look like when I was little!!
    I am so glad to hear you found a St George wall oven from the 90s. A friend has one (doesn't realise it's 'vintage' ) and has nothing but praise for it.

  2. Hi Susan, do you still have the manuals pictured above? My daughter inherited our previous house which had a St. George double oven with warming trays....she cannot find the manual I MAY have left there, but the stove was installed before our time and I cannot really remember the manual.....