Hello, my name is Anna. This blog is about all the beautiful islands around the world.

50 christmas special : newfoundland

The project has almost 3 months, and today I am happy to publish the 50th thing sent from an island! ( And I can't wait to show you those nearly 30 new cards that are waiting to be published!).

So far it was mostly beautiful postcards, but some time ago I also got this lovely parcel full of things from Canadian Newfoundland.

It was a gift from Hippy, who sent a card from her island a few weeks ago, and now got me also this parcel, with a cookbook with recipes from Newfoundland, a keychain with the flag of Newfoundland and Labrador, an old stamp and cod teeth. What a great surprise just before Christmas!

fat-back & molasses

Ivan Jesperson
January 1, 1974

I would like to share some of those "favourite old recipes" with you, right now I've chosen some of the Christmas cakes, but the book is a great collections of all kinds of recipes, for all seasons, so I am sure I will show you much more in the future.

All of the recipes were sent by women from Newfoundland and neighbouring islands (as you can see there is always the author's name below each recipe). The book has also drawings for each month, that illustrate scenes from island's life.

First, a 200 years old Christmas cake recipe, brought to Newfoundland from Ireland. The ingredients are:

4 cups flour,
2 rounded tsp custard powder mixed with a little cold water,
1 lb sticky raisins,
1 tsp cinnamon,
1/4 tsp cloves,
1 pint milk,
1 cup butter,
1 tsp baking soda,
1/2 lb currants,
1/2 lb mixed fruits,
1/2 tsp ginger,
1 lb brown sugar.

As the recipe says "Rub butter through flour, add sugar and mix well. Add spices & mix well. Add fruit & mix well. Add a little salt. Add milk in which soda has been dissolved. Bake in covered pot for 3 and 1/2 hours at 275 F. Let cake cool with cover on".

If you would like to find some more modern recipes from the island of Newfoundland, have a look at those sites:

Saltjunk, Rock recipes, The Newfoundland Kitchen, Newfoundland recipes.

Browsing through them (and looking at the cookbook's title) you will quickly notice one especially important ingredient in the kitchen of Newfoundland: molasses!

"The Newfoundland Kitchen" sums up perfectly what it means to the inhabitants of this island: "Mmmmm. A staple for baking, cooking and eating, molasses has been a part of Newfoundland culture forever. I think I ate molasses on everything as a kid; even on chicken. Nothing made me happier. These cookies just bring back all those childhood memories. And the aroma of molasses cookies baking is one of the happiest Christmas memories."

According to the book the molasses tarts recipe is one of the Newfoundland favourites. To prepare them you need "1 and 1/2 cups butter or shortening, 4 cups flour, 2 tsp spice, 2 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp soda dissolved in 1/4 cup tea, 1 and 1/2 cups molasses and 2 tsp cloves. You have to mix the ingredients well and 'patty' mixture on pie plate. Fill with any jam desired and and arrange pastry strips across top. Bake in moderate oven until done!"

I am far from Newfoundland, but my aunt used to bake such cookies for Christmas too, and I really loved them. Hopefully I will visit Newfoundland one day and see if their cookies are just as good ;)!

Here you can find another version of this recipe, and some photos of the molasses cookies (also called Jam Jams)!

I wish you all beautiful winter holidays! And again, big thanks to Hippy for this lovely gift!


in the Atlantic Ocean
over 479,000
biggest town
St. John's
parcel received
distance travelled
sent from
Corner Brook

source: Prudence MacLeod
source: Natalie Lucier


  1. What a beautiful gift! Happy holidays, Anna!

  2. We always have a traditional Newfoundland Jig's Dinner for Christmas! These recipes look delicious! If there is toucans in there you must try them with molasses on top!

  3. Prześliczna paczuszka, z której idzie wiele dowiedzieć się o tej wyspie :)



My big dream is to receive postcards sent from every island in the world (at least those that have a postbox). If you would like to help me, please contact me at letters.from.islands@gmail.com.

Follow on Facebook. Follow on bloglovin’. Follow on blogger. Follow on flickr. Posts feed.