Recipes may seem like an unusual thing to have on an origami site, but I’ve noticed over the years that there seems to be a strong connection between people who like origami and people who like food. And at conventions I’ve been asked for particular recipes, so here they are.


We will start with the Scottish traditional sweet known as tablet. It’s a curious sweet in that very few people in Scotland will buy a commercial version. This is partly because they either make it themselves, know someone who makes it, or will buy it from a home-baking stall at a local fete. But it’s mainly because the commercial versions really aren’t as good as the home-made stuff.

The other problem is that everyone who makes it has their own little tweak to the recipe, their own preferences for the texture or colour (which ranges from near white to light brown) or even the flavour (should I add vanilla? Or not? If so, how much?).

But what everyone agrees on is that their granny made the best tablet! So if you want to be known as a premier tablet maker, become a granny. This is more of a problem for those of us burdened with an Y-Chromosome, but, as we all know, to be the best at something requires sacrifice!

Recipe 1 (which I got from my sister) :-

750g / 26oz granulated sugar
275ml /9 fl oz milk  (semi-skimmed or whole)
80g / 3 oz butter (salted or unsalted)
1 tin (397g/14oz) condensed milk

Use the biggest pan you can find, this boils up quite a lot. I use a large soup pot (10″ diameter and 7″ deep).

Melt the butter in the milk. (If you must, you could add 1/4 tsp of vanilla essence here)

Add the sugar and stir on a low-medium heat until all the sugar is dissolved.

Bring it to the boil and then reduce the heat to maintain a rolling boil until it reaches a dark toffee colour. (Note. the colour lightens on cooling, so don’t stop at the colour you want the tablet to be). This takes at least 20 ro 30 minutes, stirring frequently.

When the correct colour is reached, take it off the heat and beat the mixture until it loses most of its glossy look. Pour into greased or lined tins (or silicon moulds) and leave to cool.

When finished it should be hard, but when you bite it it should be persuaded to melt in your mouth.

Recipe 2 :- (from my wife)

1kg / 2lb granulated sugar
270g / 9oz butter
1 tin (397/14oz) condensed milk
600ml / 1 pint of hot water.

Method exactly as above but replace ‘milk’ with water.

This recipe takes longer to simmer to the correct colour (at least 45 minutes) and a lot more beating. But the final result is slightly softer. This one definitely benefits from 1/4 tsp of vanilla added while melting the butter.

Hints and tips:-

While boiling, it doesn’t really smell too sweet. Don’t worry, it’s absolutely fine, keep going.

Don’t be tempted to skip or skimp on beating the mixture. It takes a good 5 minutes or more. It should lose most of its gloss and the bits that go up the side will eventually sound like sand when you scrape them off. It’s about ready to pour at this point.

It doesn’t cut easily, unless you score it about 5 or 10 minutes into the cooling process. (Some of us like the rough cut look though)

If the tablet isn’t setting (either liquid or turning into soft toffee) you can scrape it back into a pan with a little water, gently heat it and then bring to the boil again. Simmer for a few minutes and beat again.



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