traditional scales

Despite having baked with kitchen scales growing up, I’ve never had them in my own kitchen. All the European recipes I’ve been trying to make call for ingredients by weight, which I adore, yet with the awkward translations, I’ve struggled to bake anything very accurately. For our first holiday in England, knowing all the traditional recipes we want to make, my true love gave me a set of traditional scales.


We have metric weights to go with the scales, and may get an imperial set so the children can learn both. I do love baking for math skills! They’re not the only ones delighting in weighing things out to balance the scales. Baking is such a pleasure with a tool like this one. I’ve just measured and mixed up my mother’s Finnish Gingersnaps recipe, from a book called Hyvää Ruokaa. Maybe you’d like to try it.


  • 100 grams butter
  • 100 ml sugar
  • 150 ml syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp each cloves, cinnamon, ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 300 grams flour

Cream the butter & sugar. Mix soda & spices with flour. Mix syrup and egg into creamed butter, then the dry ingredients, mixing as little as possible. Cover well & chill in fridge overnight.

Roll dough 1/4 cm thin for a gingerbread house, thinner for cookies. Cut with shaped cutters. Bake at 200C/400F for 5 1/2 minutes. Cool on racks. Store in tins.

May double or triple as needed.


It was lovely to celebrate the Solstice by starting the dough for a few kinds of holiday cookies with the girls today, and then trimming our little tree (a live, potted Spruce, our tallest yet). We like to put on carols, pour some mulled wine, and take our time with beloved old ornaments, and some gathered recently. Happy Solstice!

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