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On 18 Feb 2007 at 11:38, Pat wrote:

> i hope you can help when i was little my mom would make a pork roll
> that  was cooked and then weighed down with a plate and stone in a
> brine for six days.  this was served christmas day it was called sylte
> fleske. i only have part of the recipe. my mom has passed away and no
> one else in my family has the recipe.  have you ever had anyone ask
> about this recipe
> thank you 
> pat armstrong

Hello Pat,

"Sylte" is the word for a type of Norwegian pork roll, but I cannot find anything called "sylte fleske". See below for three different kinds of Norwegian meat rolls. See also here:



Sylte, or Norwegian Pork Roll, is a popular part of Christmas breakfast in 
Norway and is eaten in thin slices on bread. 

What You'll Need:
Ca. 1 kg boneless pork from belly or side with the rind 
4 tblsp. salt to 3 liters of water 
1 1/2 tblsp salt 
1 teasp pepper 
1 teasp clove 
1 teasp ginger 
2 teasp gelatin powder 
whole cloves 

What to do:
Simmer the pork in salted water for 1 1/2 hours. take it out of the water 
and let it rest for 30 min. Cut off the rind in one piece. Cut the meat 
and fat into 1 cm thick slices. Mix the meat, fat and spices and gelatin 
powder. Use a tray, ca 20 cm in diameter and put a damp kitchentowel in it. 
Put the rind in first and then the meat and fat slices. Make a roll (use the 
towel) and fasten a cotton tread around it so it makes a nice roll. Put it 
back into the water and let it simmer for 20 - 30 min. Take it out and put 
it under pressure (a piece of plank and a couple of bricks would do.) until 
it is cold. Decorate it with whole cloves.

3 lbs. beef flank, cut l" thick, about 12X12" square. You may sew
several pieces together if necessary.

l lb. veal round steak, cut into long strips l/2" wide.
l lb. lean pork steak also cut into long strips l/2" wide.

Lay veal and pork strips on beef. Make a mixture of:

l tbsp. salt l/2 tsp. ginger
l tbsp. sugar l tbsp. saltpeter (available at
l tbsp. pepper pharmacies)
l/2 large onion, finely chopped.

Sprinkle mixture over meat roll (jelly roll fashion), and sew edges of
roll with heavy thread or cord. A large crescent-shaped needle works

Make a brine of 4 quarts water and 2 cups of salt. Place meat roll in
brine and refrigerate 10 days, placing a heavy object on it so it will
not float. After 10 days, remove from brine and cover with fresh water
and simmer for approximately 3 hours.

Remove from water and lay meat roll on board. Place something flat and
heavy on top to press it down. Chill and slice to serve.
Norwegian Spiced Meat Roll

1 flank of beef or lamb  
1/2 teaspoon saltpeter  
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice  
1 teaspoon pepper  
2 tablespoons salt  
1 onion, chopped 
3 or 4 thin slices of pork  


2 1/2 quarts boiling water  
2 cups salt 
1/2 teaspoon saltpeter 

Flatten meat and sprinkle with spices. Spread with onion and pork.
Roll meat tightly like a jellyroll and sew ends and sides. Place
in brine for 10 days. After 10 days remove meat from brine and
wind with cord. Place in boiling water , reduce heat and cook for
2 hours or until tender. Remove from water and press between two
flat surfaces until cold. Slice thinly and serve on bread.

Brine: Combine all ingredients. 

Black Licorice

On 19 Feb 2007 at 16:54, Dara wrote:

> Hi Phaedrus,
> I came across your website a while ago and enjoy it very much.  I have
> been looking for a recipe to make black licorice candy like the
> licorice pipes and have had no success.   I thought thatI would see if
> you could come up with any.  I look forward to seeing what you come up
> with!
> Thanks so much,
>  Dara

Hello Dara,

See below.


Black Licorice Candy


2 cups  cane sugar
1 1/2 cups  Karo syrup -- (corn syrup)
1 cup  Eagle Brand condensed milk
1 cup  butter
1 tablespoon  black food colouring (15 ml)
1 dash  salt
1 tablespoon  anise oil or 2 to 3 tablespoons anise extract

Cook at 232 degrees F. Stir constantly. Do not wash sides of pan
down. Pour into greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Cool in refrigerator. Cut
into bite size pieces and wrap in waxed paper.
During the cooling process, cut long, thin strips of the licorice 
and return to refrigerator.

Caraway Seed Cake

On 20 Feb 2007 at 14:24, Natalie wrote:

> Hi Phaedrus,
> My father-in-law recently came to stay (he's 74) and mentioned you
> can't get 'caraway seed cake' these days.  I think his mother and
> sisters used to bake it for him, so its an old fashioned receipe to
> ask for.  Can you help? Hopefully one can still purchase caraway
> seeds!!!
> Appreciate your time.
> Regards,
> natalie

Hi Natalie,

See below.


Victorian  Seed  Cake

3/4 c. butter
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 c. plain flour
1/2 c. self-rising flour
2 level tsp. caraway seeds
1-2 tbsp. milk (optional)

 Grease 7-inch round cake tin.  Line with waxed paper.  Beat butter, 
 sugar and vanilla until pale and fluffy.  Beat eggs in a little at 
 a time.  Fold in the flour with the caraway seeds, adding a little 
 milk, if necessary, to give a dropping consistency.  Pour into the 
 cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour until firm to touch.
 Turn out onto a wire rack to cool, 1-2 hours.  This came from a 
 cookbook on English "tea" recipes. It is better made with butter 
 than margarine.  
Seed  Cake

6 oz. butter
6 oz. sugar
3 eggs
1 heaping tbsp. caraway seeds
2 tsp. baking powder made up to 2 c.
1 level tbsp. ground almonds
Approx. 3 oz. whole milk

  Cream the butter and sugar; stir in the seeds.  Separate the eggs, 
  beat the whites until stiff, fold in the yolks.  Add to the butter 
  and sugar, mix carefully.  Add flour and milk alternately.  Bake in 
  a buttered pan for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.  Freezes well.
Caraway  Cake

1 1/2 c. sifted all purpose flour
1 c. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. caraway seed
1/4 c. lard
1 egg, beaten
3/4 c. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. sugar

Sift the flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt together 
into a bowl and mix in the caraway seed.  Cut in lard with pastry 
blender or two knives until particles resemble rice kernels.  
Add a mixture of egg, milk, and extract; Mix until all ingredients 
are moistened. Turn batter into a prepared 11 x 7 x 1 1/2 inch 
baking pan.  Sprinkle the 2 tablespoons sugar over top.  Bake at 
375 degrees for 30 minutes or until cake tests done.  Cool in pan 
or wire rack. Cut into squares.
Irish  Cake

3 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 c. milk
1 egg
1/2 lb. raisins
1 tbsp. caraway seeds
1/2 c. shortening

Crumble sugar, shortening and 1 cup flour.  Add rest of flour 
and dry ingredients.  Beat milk and egg; add to mixture.  Bake 
in a large loaf pan (13 x 3 inch) or 2 small loaf pans. 
Bake 1 hour at 325 degrees.
Irish  Seed  Cake

2 sticks margarine
1 stick butter
3 c. sugar
5 lg. eggs
3 c. flour
Pinch salt
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 c. milk
1 tbsp. caraway seed

Cream together butter and sugar.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, 
beating well after each addition.  Add flour, salt and 
baking powder (sifted together), and add to cream mixture 
alternately with milk.  Add caraway seeds.  Pour into 10" 
tube pan and bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 10 to 15 
minutes.  Remove from oven; after 10 minutes or so remove 
cake from pan and cool. 

Bahamian Macaroni and Cheese

On 18 Feb 2007 at 5:04, Karmella wrote:

> Greetings Phaedrus,
> I recently stumbled across a food-related mystery. My family is from
> the American South (Mississippi) and I grew up with the understanding
> that *baked* macaroni and cheese is an African-American "soul food"
> dish. I took a trip to Nassau, Bahamas not too long ago (2003). On a
> restaurant menu right along with island regulars such as peas and
> rice, kalaloo and conk fritters was, to my astonishment, baked
> macaroni! I ordered some out of curiosity and it was excellent, just
> like genuine down-home soul food. 
> Is baked macaroni and cheese a recent import into the West Indies or
> was it imported into the American South.or did both groups of African
> Diasporans get it from a common source? It's uncanny how the two
> dishes are so similar.
> Thanks
> ---Dr. Haynes

Hello Karmella,

Well, because a dish is called "soul food" is no indication that it is of African-American origin. Some dishes that were actually of English and Scots-Irish origin became popular with African-Americans and have become identified with "soul food". My research indicates that this is true of macaroni and cheese.

Baked macaroni and cheese probably originated in Italy itself, although cheddar cheese was probably not the type of cheese used there. Baked macaroni and cheese with a cheddar cheese sauce probably originated in England and was brought over by colonists.

As for the Bahamas, there are two theories of Bahamian macaroni and cheese:

1) Macaroni and cheese came directly from England to the Bahamas, since the Bahamas were originally settled by the English.

2) Macaroni and cheese became popular in the Bahamas in the 1930's when Kraft introduced their boxed macaroni and cheese dinners, which were easy to transport and to store, and began to be sold in the Bahamas at that time. It is known that the Kraft product is very popular in the Bahamas even today. Other islands in the Caribbean adhere more closely to the British style of macaroni and cheese.

For more, see these sites.

History of Macaroni
"Macaroni came to America with the English, who served it baked with cheese and cream, as was also popular in the north of Italy, and in rich sweet baked custards. Thomas Jefferson is credited with introducing dried pasta without egg to America, but, like the Marco Polo legend, this is a romantic fiction. He did take notes on the manufacturing process during a trip to Naples and even commissioned a friend in Italy to buy him a “maccarony machine.” He shipped himself two cases of pasta in 1789. By 1798 a Frenchman had opened what may have been the first American pasta factory, in Philadelphia, and it was a success. Upper-class Americans also bought pasta imported from Sicily, which had snob appeal."

Wikipedia on Macaroni & Cheese
A macaroni and cheese recipe from 1802.

Travelguide: The Bahamas
"Bahamians have adopted many traditional English dishes, or adapted them to suit local tastes. These include macaroni and cheese, peas and rice, boiled potatoes and other vegetable dishes."

"It is difficult to say exactly when macaroni & cheese and potato salad, along with meats such as pork chop, barbeque chicken and ribs took over but it's fair to say that it must have started when boxed dry goods and frozen foods found their way to the Islands. Macaroni & cheese and potato salad are found throughout the Caribbean, with slight differences in the way they are prepared. This points to the availability of inexpensive imported American products."

There is a Bahamian recipe below.


Bahamian Macaroni and Cheese

1 box macaroni 
1 lb daisy cheese ( cheddar will do) 
1/2 lb butter 
2 eggs 
1 can evaporated milk 
1 small onion, chopped 
salt and hot pepper to taste 

Cook macaroni in boiling salted water & drain. 

 Add butter, then grated cheese. Next add milk, eggs and onions. 

 Mix in salt and hot pepper. Bake at 350 deg until golden brown. 
 Let it set.. and serve in squares. 

2016 Note: If you are interested in the origins of "Soul Food", I recommend "Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine" (One Plate at a Time) by Adrian Miller. This book is well-researched and well-written and has recipes for each dish that is discussed.

Jamaican Recipes

Jamaica Travel & Culture

Eat Jamaican


Copyright (c) 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 Phaedrus