Plenty Sweet Life

Grandma's Recipes One By One!

Rusks

on January 6, 2017

We always had afternoon coffee at 3:00 at Grandma and Grandpa’s house on the farm. I like to think it came from the Swedish tradition of fika, or afternoon snack. Grandma’s family WAS Swedish, after all. There was always coffee (or some derivative thereof) and several kinds of cookies, bars, or cake, and sometimes crackers. It was a nice little break in the afternoon: time to regroup, rest up, and fuel up to continue and finish out the day. This photo is of Grandma (upper right) with some of her sisters and maybe a cousin (it’s kind of hard to see who it is because they’re turned to the side), taken sometime around the 1930’s. I can’t tell if it’s all four sisters, or three of them with a cousin, but either way, this is so typical of their family.

Update: My godmother (my mom’s cousin) let me know that this photo is of all four of the sisters!

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They loved to have fun and they loved to get together, they definitely loved their sweets, and they definitely loved each other. I think they totally loved the tradition of an afternoon coffee break. By the way – notice what looks like the shadows of two men taking the photo – brothers or beaus?!! Ha!

Something we had often at Grandma and Grandpa’s house for those afternoon coffee breaks was Rusks. This is a treat that my mom still LOVES to have with her afternoon tea. When we weren’t able to find them in stores anymore, I had to get online and find a recipe for them. I found this one on the PBS Food page and it’s great. I don’t know why they don’t make these commercially anymore, but they don’t, and now the only alternative is to make them myself. I changed the recipe a bit, but I did use it for the baking and general instructions.

Here is the recipe as I made it:

Rusks

Cut into 1/4″ slices:

1 loaf French bread

Mix together:

6 Tablespoons sugar

6 teaspoons cinnamon

Melt:

1 stick butter

Using a pastry brush, brush the slices with melted butter.

Using a spoon, sprinkle cinnamon/sugar mixture on top of melted butter.

Put a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet.

Lay slices on top of cooling rack to bake.

You can turn them halfway through the baking if you need to – I didn’t turn them and they were perfectly crispy.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

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I can’t tell you how happy I am that I found this recipe! It’s so good – even better than “store-bought”!

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I tried both ways – brushing the butter on both sides and then just brushing one side. I liked it better when I brushed just one side. You’ll have to try it both ways and decide for yourself.

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Sprinkle on that delicious cinnamon and sugar and you’re golden. No wait – the rusks are golden, or at least turn golden.

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Perfect. Period.

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These are just perfect with your afternoon coffee. They’re so sweet and cinnamon-y and crunchy and delicious. I hope you and your family take up this tradition for the nice little break in the day. My family is trying to do it more often. It’s a great way to distress and reconnect with what’s really important. Family.

 

 

 

 

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