If you can get a soapstone griddle, use no other. Cakes are baked - not fried - upon it, and are thereby made comparatively wholesome. Set the griddle at the side of the range to heat gradually at least one hour before you begin to bake the cakes. If heated suddenly it is liable to crack. Clean with dry salt, then wipe with a clean cloth and it is ready for use. Never allow a drop of grease to touch it.
"If you have an iron griddle, lubricate with a bit of salt pork, leaving just enough grease on the surface to prevent sticking. The popular prejudice against griddle-cakes is founded mainly upon the fact that dough or batter soaked in grease is abhorrent to dietetic ethics.
Soapstone and iron griddles alike need tempering or seasoning in order to do their work well. They are seldom "just right" at the first trial. Give them time and handle them patiently.
Mix together a quart of buckwheat flour, four tablespoonfuls of yeast, a handful of Indian meal, two tablespoonfuls of New Orleans molasses, a teaspoonful of salt and enough water to make a thin batter. Beat hard and set to rise in the warm kitchen. A pint of this may be left over in the morning after the baking of the cakes and used as a sponge the following night, the flour, etc., being added. If the batter seems sour, add a very little baking-soda. This batter may be kept in a stone crock for a week or longer.
One cup of milk and same of boiling water; two tablespoonfuls of molasses; half cake of compressed yeast dissolved in warm water; one-half teaspoonful of salt; two cups of buckwheat flour, or enough for a good batter.
Beat five minutes, and set in a warm place to rise. In the morning beat hard for one minute; if it be sour, add a little soda, and let it rise near the fire for half an hour before baking.
Two cups of buckwheat and half a cup of corn-meal; two cups of warm milk and half a cup of warm water; two tablespoonfuls of molasses, two teaspoonfuls of baking-powder; one even tea-spoonful of salt.
Mix milk, water and molasses together. Sift meal and flour three times with the baking-powder and salt. Make a hole in the center of the flour, stir in the milk and water quickly and lightly until you have a good batter - not too stiff - and bake.
Make as in preceding recipe, substituting loppered milk or buttermilk for sweet, and a rounded teaspoonful of baking-soda for the baking-powder.
Sift a quart of whole wheat flour, a teaspoonful of baking-powder and one of salt well together. Stir into this a tablespoonful of melted butter, a tablespoonful of sugar, two beaten eggs and two cupfuls of milk. Beat all together and bake upon a soapstone griddle.
Two cups of flour; two cups of sweet milk; one egg; one tea-spoonful of baking-powder; a generous pinch of salt. Beat the egg very light; add the milk and, lastly, with just enough beating to mix all together, the flour, sifted twice with salt and baking-powder. Bake at once.
After several years trial of this simple recipe, I can recommend it unhesitatingly as the best, cheapest and most wholesome way I know for preparing breakfast cakes. The excellence of the cakes depends upon quick mixing and baking. A soapstone griddle, which is never greased, should be used.
Waffles may be made in the same way mixed a little thinner by using less flour.