Sunday, July 16, 2006

Sandwich tins? Round?

This is something sure to cause some comment amongst both Australian and American readers. Yesterday Kali sent me a recipe for cinnamon tea cake, which I made today and can thoroughly recommend. It's quick to make, and nice and light. The recipe is below.

However, I'm just wondering about the term "sandwich tin", and why it would be round? Does anyone know? I didn't have something as small as 18 cm so I used a bread loaf tin and baked it for only 25 minutes instead of 30. Another thing I noticed when I first starting using Australian recipes is that self-raising flour is much more widely used than in the U.S.

Cinnamon tea cake

1 cup self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 egg, separated
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
vanilla essence (about a capful)
1 ½ tablespoons butter, melted
extra melted butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon sugar

Sift the flour with the 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and the nutmeg. Beat the egg white until stiff. Add the egg yolk and mix in. Gradually beat in the 1/2 cup of sugar. Slowly stir in the milk and vanilla essence. Stir in the sifted dry ingredients, with the melted butter.

Spoon into a greased 18cm (7 in) round sandwich tin and bake in a moderate oven for 30 minutes. While still hot, brush the top with extra melted butter and sprinkle with the teaspoon of cinnamon mixed with the tablespoon of sugar.

Serve warm or cold, with butter.

From: The Australian Heritage Cookbook
ISBN 1 74045 492 8


Alice said...

Not being anything remotely like a cook myself, I can only hazard a guess as to why it's called a sandwich tin.

As I understand it, the term usually refers to two tins in which you bake two cakes (usually sponge) which are then 'sandwiched' together with cream, jam, icing or some other filling.

Val said...

Aaaaah! I had assumed, and so did the MWC, that it had something to do with sandwiches, the lunch type food. Your explanation would make more sense!

Let’s see what others chime in with.

Sue said...

Although I am a cook and baker, this wasn't a term I knew! We have loaf, bun, cake, tube, bundt, springform, & sheet, (and probably tons more than don't come to mind) but this was a new one for me! I love trying new recipes!

Lucy Tartan said...

I haven't made a cake since I was a teenager, but it's what Alice said - a round cake tin which is shallower than your usual cake tin, and they come in pairs. I think perhaps they hail from the era of ubiquitous cream-filled sponge cakes.

I don't know if you can buy them any more.

Val said...

Yes, Lucy, quite correct. We still use them in UK to make Victoria (and other) sandwich cakes. So called as the two layers are put together with a filling of cream and/or jam.

Val said...

Thanks for clearing that up! I feel quite silly now, having thought it had something to do with lunch-type sandwiches, and trying to visualise a round shape for them.

Kali said...

glad to see that your query had been answered.
It's the first time I tried that recipe, but will be making it again.

Lindsay Lobe said...

I think Alice is on the right track !!
but here are few more facts !!

1765 John Montagu, fourth Earl of Sandwich, orders roast beef between slices of toast to be brought to him at a gaming table, thereby inventing the lunch staple which bears his name.

1810 First patent for a tin-plated iron can in England.

I think the idea of the Sandwich tin may have arisen then.

1818 Tin-plated can introduced to America. Maybe then but named after the Earl of Sandwich !!

1825 First tin-plated can patented in the United States.

1847 First metal stamping machine patented in America.

1800s Empty tobacco, cookie, and biscuit tins used as lunch pails or for sandwiches.

1892 First successful vacuum bottle created in laboratory by James Dewar, an English scientist.

1902 First American lithographed tin lunch box shaped like a little picnic basket and featuring children at play.

1903 First commercial vacuum bottle, the "Dewar Flask," patented and sold in Germany.
Best wishes

Val said...

Fantastic info, Lindsay! Thanks!

Kali, isn't it amazing that from one little mention on your blog, my request for the recipe, your answer, my posting it, have resulted in all this discussion? I love the blogging life!

Granny said...

Everyone beat me to it and I had to google.

We don't call them that here but I can't remember what we do call them. Probably a cake pan (with removable bottom).

Stealing your recipe and linking back to your post.


Autumn said...

Granny sent me by to take a look at that cinnamon tea cake and it sounds really yuumy. I hope you don't mind but I'm stealing it for my personal recipe book

Janice said...


I just came over from Ann's Roc rebel Granny.

Your reciepe looks good, and I didn't know that bit about the samwich or cake tins--interesting.


Kerri said...

Interesting discussion Val! Yes, Alice and Val are right! They're called 'layer' pans over in layer cake...or just 'round' cake pans, I think.
That cake recipe reminds me of the lady who lived next door to us in Palm Beach Australia...a sweet Scottish lady named Mrs. Stone. When I was about 13 yrs old She taught me to make date tea cake (or cinnamon as an alternative) and English short bread....yum! Her shortbread was the best I've ever tasted.