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History students host a Great Victorian Bake Off

Star bakers can use authentic Victorian recipes from Special Collections

Students at Manchester Metropolitan University are hosting a genuine Great Victorian Bake Off at Elizabeth Gaskell's House in Manchester.

History student Brittany Hart and Christie Loftus, who studies Medieval to Early Modern History, have specially selected a few recipes from authentic Victorian recipe books held in the University’s Special Collections.

They are inviting the public and keen bakers to enter the homemade Victorian treats into the baking competition on Tuesday 21 March. The bake off will be judged by a Victorian re-imagining of Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood, in character as Elizabeth and William Gaskell.

Alongside the public’s entries, volunteers at Elizabeth Gaskell’s House will be preparing some of the old-time treats. Entry into the competition not compulsory so come along, taste some of the recipes, and decide who should be crowned star baker. There will also be awards for skill, originality and effort.

Brittany and Christie said: “It has been such a good experience working on this History in Practice project. Special Collections is such a great resource at the University and being able to search through the archive’s Victorian recipe books was so interesting as they provided a really authentic glimpse into the past that you can’t find in a history text book. Reading through and testing out the recipes, and eventually tasting the cakes, allowed us to put ourselves in the shoes of the Victorian women that would have made them.”

Michala Hulme, Course Leader for History in Practice at Manchester Metropolitan University, said: “We are very excited to be working with the Elizabeth Gaskell House on this project, which will see these rare Victorian cake recipes being made. If you can’t make it to the event, have a go at making these cakes at home and send a picture of it to the Manchester Centre for Regional History on twitter @MCRH_MMU.”

There will be the opportunity to view the original archive recipe books and have a chat with the one of the Special Collection’s librarians at the event.If you enjoy reading old recipe books, our Home Studies Collection holds more than 700 books from the last three hundred years, from Victorian recipes to 18th century household manuals, and war time cookery books. For more information on Manchester Metropolitan University Special Collections visit: 

The Great Victorian Bake Off
Tuesday, March 21, 2017 - 18:30 to 21:30
Tickets for the event are £5 per person and include a free drink on arrival, samples of cakes and optional entry into the Bake Off. There are a maximum of 30 spaces available.
To book email: 
Recipe cards will be provided upon booking.

Published Monday, 20th March 2017 Bookmark and Share

Manchester Metropolitan University is one of the most extensive higher education centres in Europe with 37,000 students and more than 1,000 undergraduate, postgraduate and professional courses. The University educates and trains large numbers of legal and business professionals, scientists, engineers, teachers, health workers and creative professionals.

Manchester Met has invested £350 million in its estate and facilities during a ten-year plan to create a truly world-class campus in the heart of Manchester and in Cheshire.

The University is in the top three nationally for environmental sustainability, in the top 3% of global universities as ranked by the Times Higher Education and has an 85% research impact rated world-leading and internationally excellent.

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