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Lockdown learning extended back in the Food Tech classroom!

Over lockdown Mrs Reihana's Year 10 class was given the challenge titled: Way Back When?

Students were to choose a favourite homemade meal or dessert and find out it's history. In their research many students reconnected with elderly family members when looking into recipes that have been popular in families for many generations. They learnt important information about the lives their family lived many years ago and are continuing on the legacy of making these family favourite foods. Now back at school they have been experimenting with these family recipes and have a new found appreciation for these family recipes and the sustainable practices their family used in baking.

Well done to our Food Tech students who have combined history and family history with food technology, a great assignment and it is neat to see grandma's recipes make their way into Trident!

Way back when?

By Layla Rowland

Grandma’s mum

Rolled oat biscuits Ingredients-

  • 1 cup of flour

  • 1 cup of coconut

  • 1 cup of rolled oats

  • ¾ cup of sugar

  • ¼ cup of peanuts

  • ¼ cup of sultanas

  • 2 heaped tbsp of golden syrup

  • 170g of butter

  • 1 tsp of baking powder

  • 1 tsp of baking soda

  • 1 tsp of mixed spice

  • Pinch of salt


  • Mix all dry ingredients thoroughly in a bowl.

  • Melt butter and golden syrup and add to dry ingredients.

  • Mix well

  • Place in flat tin (12 inches x 8 inches

  • Bake at 180 degrees for 20 mins

  • Cut into squares whilst hot


This recipe is my grandma’s, and she got it from her mum. Back then the only way to find recipes was from other people as there was no internet, so no doubt she would have got it from her mother as well and so on.

I did some research and found out that rolled oat cookies come from England dating all the way back to the 1800’s, but it is also believed that they originated from oatcakes. These oat cakes were carried with the soldiers around the wars as their boost of energy during their battle.

My grandma prepares them when we come over or she comes to us as a treat. However, back when my grandma was little her mum would make these for her every week as she didn’t work and she loved to bake, along with 2 other dishes as my great grandmother believed that if you turn the oven on you should make the most of it, as the ovens back then took longer to heat up. She would cook three dishes every Saturday morning as it was considered baking morning. My great grandma made these all the time for my grandma until she was married and then she passed the recipe onto my grandma. She also passed it to her granddaughter Julie because she loved them as well.

I think this recipe has survived so long because both my families originate from England, and this recipe originated from england. The recipe is adaptable because you can add whatever you want in them. It doesn't have to be sultanas and peanuts, it can even be plain. My great grandma's adaptations were: adding ¼ cup of sugar less than the recipe and more golden sugar, adding ¼ more of sultanas and nuts, using brown sugar if you wanted something less sweet and adding wholemeal flour instead of normal flour.

I believe that the cooking time will become shorter as the ovens get hotter and more variations will adapt as more products will be created. This recipe has come from my great grandma, to my grandma and now to me.

Hannah Baxter: "This challenge connected me with Grandma, who was excited about sharing the recipe." Hannah was surprised that her grandmother knew the history of the carrot cake. The carrot cake recipe was a bit 'out there' because there was a reluctance to have vegetables in a cake at the time. Hannah has discovered that there are a lot more family recipes that have been passed down than she thought such as pumpkin cake, whitebait fritters, berry muffins just to name a few.

Emily: There are recipes of Great Grandma’s that have never been tried because they went down to Aunty P. Uncle Donald, who lives in the South Island is a chef and was the only one who got the seal of approval, met the standard for the shortbread. Below is a photo of the shortbread that has been made now Emily is back at school and the shortbread legacy continues!

Here is another family favourite from Alison Elliffe's family recipes.

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