Today is Beatrix Potter’s 143rd birthday!!
I’m a huge fan and sucker for anything Beatrix related — books, china and pottery, apparel, figurines, stuffed animals, stickers, stationery, you name it. I’m so obsessed that I even named our dining room after one of my fave BP books. While other normal people decorate their dining rooms with sophisticated window treatments and/or floral centerpieces, ours boasts “Roly Poly Pudding” in blue and green stand up letters.
I can’t help it, really. Just seeing those three words makes me deeply happy. They’re adorable, delicious, so very British. And if any of our dinner guests misbehave, we can always roll them up in a pudding (mmwwwaahahahahaha)!
The Roly-Poly Pudding was the original name for this tale, first published in 1908. It’s all about the time Tom Kitten finds himself confronted under the attic floorboards by two very large rats, Samuel Whiskers and his wife, Anna Maria. They decide to butter him up and roll him in dough to make a delicious pudding. Roly poly, roly poly! The character of Samuel was based on Beatrix’s own fancy rat, Sammy, whom she describes as “the intelligent pink-eyed representative of a persecuted (but irrepressible) race and affectionate little friend, and most accomplished thief.” Irrepressible indeed, as he somehow got the book renamed in 1926. Typical rat.
Cornelius (licking his chops) convinces Kitty to re-enact the famous rolling scene.
Have you ever eaten a roly-poly pudding? It’s commonly known as Jam Roly-Poly, a simple dessert consisting of jam spread over dough, which is rolled up and baked. Celebrate Miss Potter’s birthday by making your own Jam Roly-Poly (recipe here).
photo by Chico68.
For the full effect, drown it in warm custard.
photo by Sandy49.
The animated version of The Tale of Samuel Whiskers can be found in three parts on YouTube (adorable, adorable). I’ve embedded the best part, where Tom gets rolled in the dough. If you prefer to watch it from the beginning, click here.
Happy Birthday, Beatrix!
Mosaic by lillipops.
Kitty gets the last roll!
♥ Other Beatrix Potter posts on this blog:
“Tea with Miss Potter” (recipe for Blueberry Muffins)
“Fierce Bad Rabbit’s Carrot Raisin Salad”
“Of Bonnets and Bunnies, Carrots and Cakes” (includes recipe for Carrot Cake).
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥