In the early days of writing this blog, I used to read Shirley Goode's blog daily. I was still nursing Isabelle for what seemed like the majority of my days so I always planned lots of things to do to make the most of my time nursing. I would prepare sewing and similar crafts the night before so I could manage to do them once Izzy settled to feed. I'd also read books and blogs online to pass the time when my arms ached from making.
One of my favourite blogs was Shirley's. It was warm and comforting and like visiting an old friend. She would always give a welcome to her new followers and I remember one day after leaving a comment, feeling thankful when I realised she'd taken the time to welcome me to her community. She was very honest about everyday life and her blog was an insightful look into getting older. She loved recalling stories from "the old days" and admitted that she was old fashioned in many of her own ways. I found myself agreeing with her a lot on her thrifty ways, her simple no nonsense cooking and her views on childhood. Being vegetarian, I ignored the meaty recipes, but admired her for how she still managed to make big buffets (and price them up in the way she loved to do) for her husband's "Club". She kept going as much as she could, always setting herself challenges, even after the passing of her husband, B, and enjoyed life until the end. She sometimes unintentionally offended but always apologised the following day, which I thought was very humble of her.
I found and was reminded of many thrifty recipes on her blog (in the days before A Girl Called Jack, now Cooking on a Bootstrap, whose blog I also follow).
Once I stopped nursing, I sadly had less time to read blogs. I found my daily visits to old favourites became weekly, monthly then infrequently. I deeply regretted this when in the new year, I remembered to visit Shirley's site and check if there had been another update since she fell ill in May. I was shocked and saddened to read a note from her daughter informing us that she had passed away on 6 November, 2015. I felt guilty for not reading her blog, emailing her or leaving comments as frequently as I used to. It's sad to know that there will never be an update or reply to a comment again. My thoughts are of course with her children, family and friends and I really hope that someone will make her recipes into a modern book or website so everyone can have access to them again, as I know she would be happy knowing that was her legacy.
In March 2012, I first made her "Homemade Jammy Dodgers". I know this as I mentioned it in my blog here (sadly without a photo of the finished biscuit). I chatted with her in the comments the following day and she liked my suggestions for alternative fillings.
They went down well with the kids so I decided to make them this year as the heart shape is very apt for Valentines.
Shirley Goode's Homemade "Jammy Dodgers"
Ingredients and Recipe
Please visit Shirley Goode's blog for the full recipe but these are the adjustments that I made:
I added water to make the mixture "come together".
Assembling Your Jammie Dodgers
Roll your dough out and cut out two biscuit shapes the same size (I couldn't find my round cookie cutter so had to cut out my shape, giving my biscuit a rather rustic look!).
Leave one of the shapes whole for the bottom layer.
Cut a smaller shape (I used a heart) out of every second round biscuit shape. This will be your top layer.
Once cooked and cooled, spread a little jam onto each bottom layer.
Place the top layer on top of the jam and you have yourself a home made Jammy Dodger!
They are delicious and the kids love them as an after dinner treat.
We have also made a Nutella "not jammy" Dodgers version (click the link to see the recipe).
Thank you so much to Shirley Goode for sharing her recipes over the (many) years, I'm sure she helped more families than she will ever know.
As Shirley would always sign off, "Ta ta for now".