Category Archives: Wakefield

Rhubarb ramblings from the Nom Nom Nom cookery book reader group

Wakefield Libraries’ Nom Nom Nom Cookery book reader group has been meeting on the first Saturday of each month at 2pm since April 2014. Our meetings are a  bubbly combination of chat, reading and cookery skills sharing. At our most recent meeting on the 3rd February 2018 we turned our thoughts to the forthcoming Wakefield Festival of Food, Drink and Rhubarb, which will be taking place 23-25 February 2018.

As huge fans and advocates of rhubarb-based cookery we felt we had to share our favourite recipes with each other and Wakefield Libraries blog readers. Rhubarb, now in season, is so much more versatile and delicious than it is often given credit for. Our top 10 rhubarb recipes include:

  1. Rhubarb Ginger Crunch from Mary Prior, Rhubarbaria, (Prospect Books, 2008)

A no-bake cheesecake with a crunchy ginger biscuit base and creamy filling.


Rhubarb Ginger Crunch

2. Custard yo-yos with Rhubarb Icing from  Yotam Ottolenghi, Sweet, (Ebury Press, 2017)

Delightful sandwich biscuits with a rhubarb-vanilla custard cream filling. Sometimes known as ‘melting moments’ or ‘custard kisses’.


Custard yoyos with roasted rhubarb icing

3.  Roasted Rhubarb with Ginger from Claire Bailey, The 8 week blood sugar diet recipe book ( Short Books, 2016)

A compote featuring rhubarb, coconut oil and ginger, could be eaten on its own, or as a topping with porridge, thick yogurt or ice cream

4. Rhubarb Curd from Sean Wilson, The Great Northern Cookbook ( Hodder, 2012)

Another versatile recipe, Nom Nom cooks particularly recommended this is used in place of lemon curd to make a light gluten-free dessert in Mary Berry’s Meringue roulade recipe

5. Joan’s Rhubarb and Oat Muffins Apple (or rhubarb) and Oat Muffins

Moist and with a pleasant tang of rhubarb, these muffins were a real treat. Joan modified an existing recipe she likes to use, substituting rhubarb instead of  apple


Rhubarb Crumble Muffins

6. Spiced Rhubarb sauce for Mackerel from Mary Prior, Rhubarbaria, (Prospect Books, 2008)

Proof, should it still be required, that rhubarb can also contribute to savoury dishes, this sauce with a hint of winter spice would go well with a range of oily fish and roast meat dishes.


Spiced Rhubarb Sauce for Mackerel

7. Rhubarb Lattice Pie with Cardamom and Orange  from Epicurious

A beautiful-looking traditional rhubarb plate-pie hiding a fragrant twist of cardamom and orange. Works well also with ginger and orange.


Rhubarb Lattice Pie with Cardamom and Orange


8. Rhubarb and Almond Cake by Nadiya Hussain for The Times

We wholeheartedly agree with Nadiya’s own description “A cake of sharp contrasts, thanks to a shot of rhubarb”

9.  Rhubarb Mule Cocktail  A favourite recipe from Jennifer Klinec

Jennifer came to speak to our group a couple of years ago after her return from Iran, where she had fallen in love with the food and a certain Iranian gentleman. Her recipe for a  Rhubarb Mule Cocktail  is bursting with the same joie de vivre as her book.

rhubarb mule

Rhubarb Mule cocktail

10. Virginia’s Rhubarb and ginger cheese cake 

made as dainty cupcake-size samples, this no-bake cheesecake was another simple way to incorporate the sharp tang of rhubarb into a delicious creamy treat.



Finally…Tusky – Yorkshire forced rhubarb pieces dipped raw into a bowl of sugar and eaten as a sweet treat

A traditional treat for children, candy-pink ‘tusky’ with a bowl of sugar to dip and eat raw is a sweet-sour taste explosion guaranteed to blow off your hat (and some tooth enamel).  Its a  love-it-or-hate-it experience to sort the true rhubarb connoisseur from the  mere aficionado! Dare you try?



A Nom Nom Nom Christmas!

Members of the Nom Nom Nom Cookery book Reader group, who meet at Wakefield Library on the first Saturday of the month at 2pm recently held their festive meeting. The meeting was filled with tasty treats and good cheer as we all look forward to cooking for ourselves and our families over the festive season.

First on the agenda was a discussion of our November book club 51XFwia+ZOL__SS160_title, which was Linda Collister’s Great British Bakeoff: Everyday, one of the first books in the long running franchise from 2013, which took us back to the very beginning of the Bake off phenomenon. It includes recipes from Paul Hollywood, Mary Berry, bake-off contestants and was compiled by Linda Collister, who has collaborated with Mary Berry on a number of titles.

Members agreed that there were a great deal of excellent recipes in this book, particularly highlighted were some of the savoury recipes, which balance out the sweet treats and breads, making this book a great all-round title for the avid baker, and equally great for beginners too.

Book group members then shared their favourite festive recipes which they will be making for their loved ones this Christmas, including Lemon Buns, Marzipan filled Chelsea Buns, cheese and mustard savoury biscuits, homemade cream crackers with cumin seeds and parmesan and sesame lollipops. Members then chose a mystery festive cookery title to take away and try this coming month.

Particularly admired was book group member Pam’s square Tunis Cake, an alternative to fruit cakes at Christmas, the recipe for which Pam has written up to share with Wakefield Libraries Blog readers download here. Pam has adapted a Mary Berry recipe and added a rich chocolate icing to make this family friendly treat for the festive table.

The group meets again on the 6th January, 2pm at Wakefield Library, all are welcome.

The History of Afternoon Tea – Author Event

afternoon-teaThe Nom Nom Nom Cookery Book Reader Group invites you to join them on Saturday 1 April  2.00-3.30pm  at Wakefield Library. Cookery author and blogger Meryl White will explore the origins and the characters involved in creating this quintessential British tradition and what makes the perfect afternoon tea. This is a free event but booking is essential please.

To book:

Tel 01924 305356


The Nom Nom Nom! Cookery book reader group was established in March 2014 meeting monthly, whose members are interested in food and cookery and want to share experiences and recipes with like-minded individuals. Members of all cooking abilities are welcome, you don’t have to be of bake-off or masterchef standard to enjoy your food and cooking it!

The Nom, Nom, Nom book group meets on the first Saturday of each month 2-3pm at  Wakefield Library and Museum at Wakefield One, Burton Street. The book club gives members the opportunity to try new cookery writers, ingredients and experiment with different cuisines and share their results (and disasters!) within a friendly group.

Visit Meryl’s blog at

Cookery author event – Grandma Abson’s Traditional Baking

The Nom Nom Nom cookery book reader group, which meets regularly

Grandma Abson's Butterscotch Cake (4)

Doncaster Butterscotch Cake

at Wakefield One Library and Museum the first Saturday each month at 2pm, invites you to join us for an afternoon of tea, cakes and Edwardian recipes from Grandma Abson’s vintage recipe book. On Saturday 5th March 2.00-3.00pm author Meryl White will be talking about her book and sharing some tasty home-baked treats. Read more about Grandma Abson’s legacy on Meryl’s blog


“Grandma Abson’s Traditional Baking is all about simple and tasty baking, a legacy from my Grandma’s time as a

Flakemeal biscuits (5)

Irish Flakemeal Biscuits

cook-housekeeper in Edwardian times and a lifetime of baking. As I was growing up, I watched her bake and cook, and acquired her expertise and passion for baking. Now I’m sharing Grandma Abson’s baking with you. Enjoy!” – Meryl White, Author


Free event but booking is essential please


Wakefield Library and Museum

Wakefield One, Burton Street

Wakefield WF1 2DD

Tel 01924 305356


Reviews from the Family Reader Group

Wakefield Library’s Family Reader Group has been meeting for a few years. The group is moving on now and a new Readers Group for younger readers will be starting soon, but group members have put together reviews of some of the titles they have enjoyed most. Thank you for sharing your reading discoveries.


Storm glass Spy Glass 2 Spy galss 3

Chronicles of Ixia series by Maria V Snyder
In the very first of the Glass series – Storm Glass – Opal, the main character, goes on a journey with a master magician to help a clan of magicians who harness the power of the storms out at sea. Along the way she forges many friendships but much more enemies.

My favourite character is Opal Cowan. I really liked her character as she is resilient and though she’s easy to manipulate she gets stronger physically and mentally in the end. She makes me want to be as sturdy and mentally strong as she is at the end of the book.

My favourite part of the book was the description and detail in the glass making, as well as all the different types of magic and how they are used. I loved this book and read the whole trilogy as well as the three before. It was, all in all, a great series of books.

I couldn’t put the books down – I felt like my eyes were glued to the pages. I would definitely recommend this book.

Review by Barnaby, age 15


Zombie Fairy Tales by Kevin Richey
Classic fairy tales with a dark twist. A plague is killing characters but once dead they come back to life – one scratch is all it takes. The stories all intertwine with each other. The characters are all from fairy tales – Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, Pocahontas, etc. – and are well written so that you sympathise with them.

There were a number of scary bits as it is a horror/dark comedy. It was an interesting take on fairy tales and I liked how the stories were intertwined. I would definitely read it again.

I would definitely recommend this book as it was well written and funny.

Review by Maddy, age 22

City of bones City of ashes City of glass
City of Bones Series by Cassandra Clare
Clary Fray finds out that she is a shadow hunter and Jace Wayland – the main character – who is brave and foolhardy but loves Clary helps her to find her true self. Her friend Simon Lewis joins in the adventures and plays a larger role in future books. helps her to find her true self. Exciting adventures and family feuds make each book in the series a thrill to read. Warlocks, werewolves, demons and vampires are all in the books. Great fun to read.

I really enjoyed the book. My favourite part is when poor Simon becomes a vampire but can’t stand blood! The scary parts are those dealing with Sebastian Morgenstern who has demonic blood and wants to take over the world.

I wold definitely recommend all six books in this series, plus the three Infernal Devices prequels which explain many things.

Review by Judy, adult member

Family Learning Festival 18th October – 2nd November 2014

Webbanner-633x236The Family Learning Festival takes place 18th October to the 2nd November 2014. Wakefield Libraries will be running a whole host of activities during the festival including family storytimes, craft activities, internet tasters, workshops and much more. Details of what’s on at libraries across the district can be viewed below or downloaded here (PDF) FLF_Libraries_events_2014 .

All Wakefield Libraries events listed below are free to attend and unless otherwise stated, do not require advance booking.

Family learning is a fun way for parents, grandparents, extended family members, children or carers to learn together. Sometimes it is about parents wanting to support their children in the best possible way. For some adults it is a chance to ‘have another go’ at learning.

ColourFestivalLogoRGB-webFamily Learning Festival is an annual event run by the Campaign for Learning . The theme for this year’s Festival is ‘Out of this World. Take an adventure in learning from exploring outer space, to understanding scientific discoveries and the natural world.


Whats on in Wakefield Libraries

Date Time Venue Event details
18/10/2014 10am-12pm South Elmsall Library Get Ready for Halloween with fun crafts
20/10/2014 10am – 11am Pontefract Library ‘Out of This World’ PAWS Craft Activity & Stories
20/10/2014 2pm – 3pm Pontefract Library  ‘Out of This World’ Stepping Stones Craft Activity & Stories
20/10/2014 11am-11.30am Featherstone Library ‘Out of this world’ storytime
21/10/2014 11am – 11.30am Pontefract Library ‘Out of This World’ Church Group Activity & Stories
21/10/2014 9.30am-11am South Elmsall Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
21/10/2014 1.30pm-2.30pm Wakefield One Library and Museum Under 5’s ‘Out of this world’ Story time
22/10/2014 9.15am – 10.15am Pontefract Library ‘Out of This World’ Baby Morning Activity & Stories
22/10/2014 10.30am-11.30am Sandal Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
22/10/2014 10.30am – 11.30am Pontefract Library ‘Out of This World’ Baby Morning Activity & Stories
23/10/2014 10am-11am Castleford Library ‘Out of this world’ Baby Morning
24/10/2014 10.30am-11am Hemsworth Library ‘Out of this world’ Baby Rhyme Time
24/10/2014 10am-11am Wakefield One Library and Museum Under 5’s ‘Out of this world’ Story time
24/10/2014 10.30am-11am Ossett Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
24/10/2014 2.15pm-3pm Horbury Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
27/10/2014 11.00am-11.30am Featherstone Library ‘Out of this world’ storytime
27/10/2014 2pm-3pm Airedale Library ‘Out of this world’ Family Craft Activities
27/10/2014 2pm-4pm Hemsworth Library Children’s Cookery Course. To book 01977 722270
28/10/2014 9.45am-10.45am Pontefract Library ‘Out of This World’ Half-term Craft Activities. To book 01977 727692
28/10/2014 10.15am-11am South Elmsall Library Spooky Halloween story time
28/10/2014 1.30pm-2.30pm Wakefield One Library and Museum ‘Out of this world’ Under 5’s Story time
28/10/2014 2pm-4pm Hemsworth Library Children’s Cookery Course. To book 01977 722270
28/10/2014 2pm-3pm Sandal library ‘Out of this World craft activity
28/10/2014 10.15am-11am South Elmsall Library Creepy-crawly Halloween storytime
29/10/2014 10.30-11am Ossett Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
29/10/2014 11am-2pm Airedale Library Family Learning craft and stories with Author Conrad Burdekin spooky masks, eye patches, lanterns and spiders!
29/10/2014 2pm-5pm Knottingley library ‘Out of this world’ space rockets and spooky Halloween crafts session
29/10/2014 4pm-5pm Wakefield One Library and Museum ‘Out of this world’ Teenage Readers Group
30/10/2014 2pm-3pm Airedale Library Halloween Craft Activity – make scary bats and ghosts!
30/10/2014 2pm-4pm Hemsworth Library Children’s Cookery Course. To book 01977 722270
30/10/2014 2.30pm-3.30pm Featherstone Library ‘Out of this world Halloween craft and story to book 01977 722745
30/10/2014 4pm-5pm Hemsworth Library Halloween Craft Activity
31/10/2014 10.30am-11am Hemsworth Library ‘Out of this world’ Baby Rhyme Time
31/10/2014 2pm-4pm Hemsworth Library Children’s Cookery Course. To book 01977 722270
31/10/2014 2.15pm-3pm Horbury Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time
31/10/2014 10.30am-12.30pm South Elmsall Library Halloween family craft morning
31/10/2014 10am-11am Wakefield One Library and Museum Under 5’s ‘Out of this world’ Story time
31/10/2014 10.30am-11am Ossett Library ‘Out of this world’ Story Time


Wakefield Libraries celebrates Black History Month

October is Black History month, and to celebrate we are hosting an evening of family fun with an African theme. Join us at Wakefield Library and Museum, Wakefield One, Burton Street, Wakefield, on Wednesday 8th October 4-8pm for a range of family fun activities. Get it loud in the library with a Drumming workshop, hear an African story or two, do some craft, and look at the African costumes on display in the library entrance area.  Its going to be a noisy, lively colourful party, and its free, so just drop in and enjoy the fun! Just one of a series of events being held in Wakefield to celebrate Black History Month this October.2.0 BHM Programme 2014-01

2.0 BHM Programme 2014-02

The Write to Conscience – free event

ariseAs the world prepares for war, one community prepares its own battle – for peace. It costs them everything – except their conscience.

Wednesday 29 October 2014 at Wakefield Library, Wakefield One, 6pm to 7.30pm
Tickets: Free 

As a lead in event to the performances of England, Arise! at the Mechanics Theatre, Wakefield, Mick Martin, writer of the play, along with actors from the production, will host an informal talk and practical session exploring the true story of the Socialist Conscience Objectors of West Yorkshire and the process of shaping historical events into a new stage play.

The play follows the stories of Arthur Gardiner and Percy Ellis, two friends involved in the socialist movement at the turn of the century who, in the face of WW1, were prepared to risk everything for their conscience.

Written by Bradford-based MICK MARTIN (‘George Orwell meets Nick Hornby, but with a plus…’ The Observer), ENGLAND, ARISE! is the story of a strong community of young people, in their early twenties and younger, and is therefore filled with the youthful vigour, humour and excitement of the prospect of a new world order. Their hunger for knowledge, ideas and political action is intertwined with the exciting cultural movement of the time.

Wakefield Lit Fest

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Just five weeks to go to the third annual Wakefield Lit Fest and it’s bigger and better than ever. Poet and writer Jackie Kay opens the festival and Simon Armitage, Ian Macmillan and Roger McGough are also appearing. Will Self is sure to be an interesting evening and Joanne Harris will be talking about her fantasy novel The Gospel of Loki. Ben Aaronovich’s PC Grant series has a lot of fans and Stuart Maconie will draw both music and book lovers.
The library has a full week of events. On Monday 22, author Stephen May will be talking about his novel ‘Wake Up Happy Every Day’. On Tuesday storyteller Christine McMahon will be leading an afternoon workshop for anyone interested in developing the skill of oral storytelling and in the evening telling stories inspired by the textile heritage of Yorkshire and Lancashire in ‘On Tenterhooks – folktales with occasional sheep. On Wednesday evening John Sunderland will be talking about how he designed the Jorvik Centre in York and his book ‘On the Way to Jorvik’. On Friday Leah Thorn will be exploring the power of expressive writing for women in prison and presenting works written by women at New Hall. For writers, York author N.E. David will be exploring how to overcome writers block in ‘A defence against the Dark Arts’ and Christina James will be giving advice on how to get published as well as reading from her new book ‘Sausage Hall’.
Saturday 27th September Lit Fest takes over Ossett for a ‘Festival in a Day’ and storyteller Susanna Meese from Telling Tales will be leading a storywalk from Ossett Library to the festival HQ at Trinity Church.
The following Saturday, 27th, is our Readers Group Day- everyone is welcome, even if you are not a member of a readers group. I am very excited that our guest speaker will be Jo Baker, author of ‘Longbourn’.
All library events are free but booking is requested, via the Lit Fest Box Office at the Theatre Royal Wakefield.

Adult Learners Festival 2014

PrintGive learning a go during the Festival of Learning throughout May and June, in the run up to Adult Learners’ Week, with Wakefield Libraries

Wakefield Council will be welcoming people back into learning during the Festival of Learning throughout May and June, culminating in Adult Learners’ Week with activities taking place from June 14th-June 20th 2014.

This annual festival provides opportunities for people to ‘learn for life’ with a wide range of learning opportunities available to celebrate, inspire and engage adult learners.

To find out more about adult learners week event, download our events flyer here.

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