Here are some pointers for entering Cookery into divisions 6, 8, 10 and 11
An absolute priority when entering the cookery classes is to present the entries on a plain white paper plate in a clear plastic bag. This will ensure that the items will be edible after the show (absolutely no cling film please as re-covering after judging is so difficult).
• Victoria Sandwich: traditionally a Victoria sandwich is filled with raspberry jam and when the schedule states ‘plain top' it means not even sugar. No grid marks from the cooling rack should be visible and this is avoided by turning the cake out onto a tea towel. It is a good idea to weigh the mixture into the tins to ensure both cakes bake to the same depth.
• Scones: savoury scones are cut out with a plain cutter and sweet with a fluted cutter. Do not twist the cutter when cutting out or the scones will rise unevenly. An ideal size is to use a 5 -6cm cutter and the scone should end up almost as tall as it is round.
• Bread rolls: make sure that they are all the same size; that they are smooth on top and well glazed. Again choose 6 of a matching size and colour to exhibit.
• Suffolk Rusks: it is worth remembering that Suffolk rusks are always split when baked and an equal number of tops and bottoms must be exhibited.
• A recipe given in the schedule: follow any recipe given in the schedule accurately making sure to use the correct size tin. It is worth trying it out on the family in advance of the show! Cakes should not be presented in commercial paper cases (sorry that means lining the tin yourself!)
• Biscuits: should all be the same size and shape. Baked until crisp they should snap when broken. Use fluted cutter for sweet and plain for savoury.
• Fruit Pie: it is usual to exhibit fruit pies on a plate or a shallow foil dish and in order to avoid a ‘soggy bottom' place a little ground rice over the pastry base before adding the fruit and bake on a preheated baking sheet. Fruit pies should be unglazed and served with a sprinkle of sugar.
• Shortbread fingers: these are cut from a tray of shortbread. Mark the divisions in the shortbread as it comes out of the oven and break off the fingers when cold.
• Cheese muffins: should be baked in a well-greased muffin tin not in paper cases.
• Jam tarts: these should all have the same jam and although there should be plenty of jam it must not have overflowed. (this can be avoided by adding a little extra jam the minute the tarts come out of the oven)
• Chocolate crunch should be cut into even-sized pieces.