Saturday, September 2, 2017

It's Our Fourth Anniversary!: Queen Cakes and a Giveaway!

Kicking off Year Five with a treat!

Hard to believe it’s really been four years, hasn’t it? I know it is for me! When I first started this blog, I had no idea how long I’d keep up with it, or if anyone would even be interested in what I was doing. I was worried about getting a job after college, and really starting to wonder if getting a history degree was a big mistake. 

Four years and over two hundred posts later, I think it’s safe to say this experiment has been pretty successful! Plus, I’m halfway through getting my MA in Public History and have a job I really enjoy, so that’s pretty cool too. 

As a special way of saying thanks to all my loyal readers, I’m hosting a giveaway of something that will hopefully inspire you to take a peek into the pantry too! Read on to find out how to enter.

As a special thank you, I’m going to be giving away an excellent used condition copy of Felicity’s Cooking Studio! The Cooking Studios were a set of books published by American Girl in the mid/late 00’s which included a spiral bound cookbook, plastic cookie cutter, table talkers, and place settings themed around a historical character’s time period. Felicity’s includes recipes from the original Felicity’s Cook Book and The American Girl Party Book, along with suggestions for colonial themed parties and crafts. 

One of the treats you can learn to make with this book are queen cakes! Queen cakes are featured prominently in Felicity Learns a Lesson, and a doll sized one was included in Felicity’s tea lesson set. This was one of my favorite sets when I was a kid, and I always wondered what queen cakes actually tasted like.

The recipe in Felicity’s Cooking Studio (and Cook Book, if you have the older edition) creates twelve delicious little cakes filled with currants and flavored with rosewater or vanilla depending on your preference. (Or what your grocery store carries!) 

To make it, you cream 1/2 of a cup of softened butter with 1/2 cup of sugar and add two eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Next, add either two tablespoons of rosewater or a teaspoon of vanilla and two teaspoons of water, as well as 1/4 of a teaspoon of salt and mace. Mace is a spice that’s fairly similar to nutmeg, but it’s worth buying the real thing if you can find it – it’s extremely fragrant and tasty! 

After gradually adding in one cup of flour, 1/4 of a cup of currants gets mixed in, and you’re good to go! Make sure the currants are dusted with flour so they don’t all sink to the bottom. 

Fill greased muffin tins until they’re about half full, and bake the cakes in the oven for 40 or so minutes at 325 degrees.

They’re fairly dense little cakes, but they’re very good with tea, whether it be black, green, or herbal. I honestly like the vanilla flavored cakes a little better than the rosewater, but rosewater is probably more authentic.

So, wondering how you can enter to win your own copy of this fun cookbook?


- One winner will win an excellent used condition copy of Felicity’s Cooking Studio complete with cookie cutter, table talkers, and place settings. 
- Must be 18 years or older to enter. If you're under the age of 18, please have an adult enter for you. 
- Entrants must provide an email address or an Instagram account so I can contact them for shipping information. 
- Entrants can enter the giveaway up to three times using the methods stated below. 
- The winner will be randomly selected. 
- The giveaway ends at midnight on September 30
- The winner will be contacted within 24 hours via email. If I do not hear back from the winner by October 7, 2017, a new winner will be selected from the remaining applicants using If, for whatever reason, you no longer want the e-gift card and wish to forfeit your entry, a second winner will be chosen from the remaining entrants using 


1. Leave a comment below saying you'd like to enter and what email address would be best to contact you with 

2. Send us an email at 


3. Repost the image above on your Instagram using the hashtag #peekintothepantrygiveaway

If you want to include a note with your comment or email about things you'd like to see us talk about in this upcoming year - whether they be new ideas for Nanea or any other character - or want to let us know you've tried out a recipe we've featured here, or anything else, please feel free! It's not necessary for entry, but I like getting feedback so I know everyone's enjoying the content we produce, or if there are ways I can improve. 

Good luck! Here’s to year five!

With lots more fun historical recipes to enjoy!


  1. Congratulations with your blog anniversary! I recently discovered your blog and it's a real pleasure to read the recipes and look at your lovely photos and dolls :-). I'm not entering the giveaway, but wish all those who enter success!

    1. Thank you very much! I'm glad you enjoy it. :D

  2. I love reading your posts. Makes my day with your newsy way of writing and the AG dolls as your focus for finding the recipes. I love your photos and the snippets of your personal life included. Thank you for four years of lovely posts! When I first found your site 2 years ago, I spent every spare minute reading your previous posts...they are addictive reading! Lisa Walker

    1. Thanks very much, I'm super flattered you like the blog so much! Sorry there hasn't been too much going on around these parts over the last year or so. Hopefully things will pick up again once grad school is finished!

  3. Thank you for authoring one of my favorite blogs! Congratulations on four years! Enter me please :)

  4. Congratulations on four years! It is a wonderful achievement.
    Please enter me.
    I would love to see you tackle recipes for the newer historicals (they will always be the historicals to me) Nanea and Maryellen.

    1. I have a couple ideas for future recipes for them coming up! But Melody is the one with the most currently on the docket. Stay tuned!

  5. Hello, Gwen. I found your giveaway and your blog just now by reading a post at Mommy's Doll Club blog. I have a small blog about my doll collection, and have added your blog link in the side listings of other doll blogs. Yours looks very interesting, so I'm looking forward to reading the past 4 years postings. Congrats! I'd love to enter the contest if possible. I live in Canada but I love historical dolls, and have quite a few of the AG dolls. My email is I still haven't figured out how to use Instagram. But I do love a good blog!

    1. Welcome to the blog! I'll have to check yours out as well. :)

  6. Congratulations on four years! Your blog continues to be a favorite of mine! I will enter via Instagram to help spread the word.

    1. Thanks for spreading the word and for the congrats!

  7. Please enter me in the contest. Congratulations on four years of blogging. I just found this blog and haven't looked around it much yet. I enjoy history and dolls and will definitely be reading more of your blog.