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Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

I thought I could start a thread in which I (and others) could post both recipes and comments/enquiries about British food. I hope I can get this thread archived-can someone tell me what to do?

It isn't all that bad you know!!! LOL

Anyway, here to start it are a few good British recipes.


Many people call this 'Shepherds Pie' when in fact it is actually Cottage Pie because it is made with ground beef. Shepherds Pie is made with ground lamb. Because Americans seem to eat a lot less lamb than we do, I have chosen to post the beef recipe; if you have a hankering for lamb, simply replace ground beef with ground lamb.

1 tsp oil
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 lb and 10oz/ 1 and 1/4 cups ground beef
1 leek, trimmed and chopped finely
1 medium chopped onion
2 medium carrots fine diced
1 stick celery, finely chopped
1 tsp tomato puree
3 and 1/2 fl oz stock or water

about 1 Lb and 10oz/ 1 and 1/4 cups potatoes-peeled, boiled and mashed with 4 tbsp milk and 1 tbsp butter until creamy and smooth

1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400f.
Heat oil in large frypan and fry off ground beef till browned. Drain away fat with a colander suspended over a bowl to catch all the meat juices; discard fat.
Return juices to frypan and bubble them fiercely for 1 min before adding the onion, leek, celery and carrots. Gently fry the vegetables until they are softly golden and translucent-about 10 mins or so. After 10 mins cooking at low heat, stirring often, return the ground beef to this pan along with the tomato puree and Worcestershire sauce. Stir well. Add the stock or water and simmer another 10 mins. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a baking dish.

Presuming you have already boiled the potatoes whilst the meat mixture fried and then mashed them until creamy with butter and milk, now spread the potato mash all over the surface of the meat mixture using a wide spatula. Completely cover the meat mixture, then, using a fork, scrape and 'scuff up' the mashed potato so as to encourage the potato topping to get crispy, golden edges. Dot potato topping with tiny chunks of butter and place in oven to bake for 20-25 mins. It is ready to eat when the potato topping is golden, with crispy bits and the meat mix is bubbling underneath.


Boil chopped swede (rutabaga) in with the potatoes and mash together. Spread topping of swede/potato over the meat mixture and bake.

Grate cheese into the potato topping and sprinkle over the top too and bake.

Add frozen peas to the meat mixture just before pouring meat mixture into baking dish.

Add a tsp of garlic puree or a chopped garlic clove to the frypan along with the vegetables.

Add a handful of sliced mushrooms to the meat mixture before baking.


Dorset is an English county on the South coast, near to Somerset and the West Country. It is famous for being the birthplace, home and setting for Thomas Hardy and his novels. It also boasts a 'heritage coastline' due to both its unique geology and the huge amount of dinosaur and fossilized remains still being unearthed today. Dorsets coastline is nicknamed 'The Jurassic Coast'.

1 tbsp olive oil
1 small fine chopped onion
generous 1/3 cup red lentils
2 tbsp sundried tomato paste
10 fl oz vegetable stock
4 good quality link sausages, casings (skins) removed
1/4 cup frozen peas
all purpose flour for dusting
2 x 18oz packs shortcrust pastry
1 egg, beaten

Heat oil in med saucepan and fry onion for 5 mins till softened. Add lentils and tomato paste and cook 2 mins. Add stock and bring to boil. Cover and simmer 15 mins until most of stock is absorbed and lentils have softened.
Meanwhile heat non stick frypan. Fry sausage meat over moderate heat for 5 mins, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until golden and cooked through. Add peas and lentils, season and set aside to cool.
Heat oven to 400f.
On a lightly floured surface, roll our each piece of pastry to about 1/2 cm thickness and cut 10 saucer shaped discs out of each re-rolling the pastry trimmings. Pile 3 heaped tsp of meat mixture in the middle of each disc. Brush edges with beaten egg and fold over to form a seal. Pinch edges together then brush with more egg. Chill on lightly floured baking sheet for 15 mins.
Bake 15-20 mins until pastry is puffed and golden.
Message 1 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 12, 2006 10:40:47 PM

1 cup extrafine sugar
2 pinches ground ginger
1/2 cup soft unsalted butter
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup Lyles Golden syrup-large stores/deli's stock this

Cream together sugar, ginger and butter. Add flour and golden syrup and mix to a firm paste. Roll into a long sausage shape, about 1 and 1/2 inch in diameter, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill in fridge-overnight is best.
Heat oven to 350f. Lightly grease a baking tray. Remove plastic wrap from chilled dough and using a sharp knife, cut off slices about 1/4 inch thick.
Arrange slices on baking tray and spread well apart as they will spread greatly whilst baking.
Bake for about 8-10 mins or until well spread out and golden. Remove from oven and leave to cool for only a few seconds to firm up slightly.
Using a spatula or fish slice, carefully remove one brandy snap at a time from the baking sheet, then straight away loosely wrap it around the handle of a wooden spoon to shape it into a roll.
If the brandy snap cools too quickly and starts to break, put the baking tray back in the still warm oven for a minute or so to soften them up slightly. Once shaped, leave to cool.
Slide the cooled brandy snaps off the spoon handles and store in an airtight container. Its traditional to eat them here either plain or full of piped whipped heavy cream.
Message 2 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 13, 2006 5:09:46 AM
Lancashire Courting Cake.

9oz self-raising flour
5oz butter
4oz sugar
1 egg
milk to mix
jam (jelly)

shift flour and rub in butter. Stir in sugar and beaten egg. Mix with milk to make a fairly stiff dough. Turn onto a board and divide into 2.
Roll in to equal rounds.
Spread jam over one round, leaving a boarder, then press second round on top.
Sprinkle with sugar.

Cook 400 f or reg 6 for 20 - 30 mins.
Message 3 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 13, 2006 7:39:29 AM
When I was a child, I would go to my (British) grandmas house and help her make (and eat) Tea Cakes. They were a yeast bun that had currants and spice in them, I recall her rolling out the dough and using a tea cup to cut them out. They were delicious!
Message 4 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 14, 2006 3:37:47 PM
That Dorset Sausage Pastries sound interesting with lentils and sausage filling. I hope to make this this weekend. Actually, this weekend is going to be a very busy weekend for me because I'm also putting up more cucumber pickles using water bath(will be trying some new taste - incorporating chopped ume and garlic), gathering more plums for jams, hoping to bake a new bread call Gubana (Italian). The giver of this recipe told me that she had this bread in Italy and had to get a recipe to try. She has made this and highly recommmends it. I ordered some candied orange peel, but I don't have it yet, so I will have to make this bread without it. And, now this Doreset Sausage Pastries.
Message 5 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 14, 2006 4:34:56 PM
Anyone have a recipe for Steak and Kidney Pie? Or maybe Steak and Kindey Pilaf? How about Cornish Pasties?
Message 6 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 19, 2006 2:27:43 AM
I can give you those. Will just read rest of the threads as have catch up to do and will then post them for you.
Message 7 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 19, 2006 8:06:48 PM
Here requested. Cornish pastry recipe from the book 'The Fish Store' by Lindsay Bareham. The author has lived for many years in a converted Cornish fish store on the harbour at Mousehole (pronounced Mowzal)nr the tip of Cornwall in West Penrith.


More controversy than ever is stirred up by debates as to the correct way to make true Cornish pasties. Local lore goes that the pasty evolved as a way for miners to take a safe,sturdy and filling lunch with them whilst working in the tin mines.The thick pastry seam running over its top acted as a 'handle' to carry it and afficionados insist that a properly authentic pasty is made only with skirt or chuck beef (chuck beef comes from the chuck or chuck shoulder section of the cow), potatoes, swede (rutabaga),onion, salt and black pepper. The pastry is traditionally shortcrust and traditionally made with lard (solid beef fat or crisco type) although its fine to 'cheat' and use ready made shortcrust store pastry!

Either use ready made or-

1 and 1/2 cups block lard
2 cups / 1 Lb strong white all purpose flour
pinch salt
ice cold water to mix


1 and 1/2 cups /just under 3/4 Lb flank, skirt or chuck beef, trimmed and diced
just under 1 cup / 8oz fine diced onion
just under 1 cup / 8oz fine diced swede / rutabaga
2 cups plus 2/3 of another cup or 1 and 2/3 Lb small diced potatoes
salt and a little black pepper
a little water
salt and white pepper

Place lard in its wrapper in freezer and leave 1 hr till hard.
Sift flour and salt into mixing bowl. Remove lard from freezer, peel back paper + dip into the flour and grate into the bowl, dipping back into the flour every so often to make grarting easier.
Mix grated lard evenly into flour until it looks like heavy breadcrumbs. Stir in 1 tbsp water at a time until dough clinmgs together, thyen form into a ball. Place in plastic bag and put in refrigerator for 30 mins.

Preheat oven to 400f. Trim and small dice beef. Keeping separate piles, peel and coarsely chop onion, peel and dice swede/rutabaga and potatoes.

Roll out pastry into 4 circles about size of a dinner plate on floured surface. Sprinkle onion and swede across pastries centre in an oval shape, leaving a 2cm border at each end. season with salt and pepper. Cover with the diced meat and then with half the potato. Season again and add the remainder of the potato.

Moisten half the pastry border with a little water, bring up each side of the pastry circle to enclose the filling and press together to form a ridge. Crimp it with your fingers to form what looks like the backbone of a stegosaurus.

Butter flat baking sheet and sprinkle with water. Transfer pastries to sheet, prick them in few places on either side of the seam and paint all over with egg wash. Use leftover pastry trimmings to cut out initials and press onto the pasties, covering with more eggwash to secure them.

Bake for 15 mins at 400f then lower temp to 300f and cook for a further 30-40 mins.
Serve wrapped in paper napkins-pasties are never eaten with knifes and forks! Makes about 4.
Message 8 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 19, 2006 8:37:10 PM

To serve 6.

2 Lb or 2 cups diced beef skirt, shin,or chuck steak
2 and 1/3 cups beef kidneys, diced and cores removed
1/4 cup seasoned with a little salt and pepper
a little cooking oil
wineglass of red wine, marsala, sherry or port
2 med onions, sliced finely
tbsp tomato ketchup
tsp English or equivalent hot dry mustard
1 bayleaf
13 fl oz beef stock or water
1 cup / 1/2 Lb button mushrooms finesliced

Heat oil in large frypan and with floured hands., toss couple of handfuls of beef into the seasoned flour then chuck it into the frypan which needs to be pretty hot but not smoking. Brown well all over then transfer to large saucepan whilst you brown the rest of the meat in this manner. Make sure the kidneys go into the oan also until browned.

When all is browned, deglaze the pan by pouring in a glass ful of red wine etc and stir and scrape up any beefy juices, residues etc, Add the deglazed pan juices to the meat in the saucapan. heat a little more oil in the now cleaner pan, add the onions, sweat on lowish heat for few mins, until softened. Add onions to the meat then Add scant tbsp of tomato ketchup to the meat, a tsp of English Mustard, bayleaf and about 13 fl oz beef stock or stock/water mix. It should barely cover the meat. Stir gently and bring to a subtle simmer and cook for about 1 and 1/2 hrs until the meat is fairly tender but not quite finished. It will have more cooking time in the pie. Check and adjust seasoning to taste.

If you want mushrooms in it, now is the time to add them after gently panfrying them separately in a little oil to let the juices run, then adding them to the meat mixture.

To assemble the pie-
Cut 1 and 1/4 Lb of either bought or home made puff pastry into 2 rectangles, one very slighter bigger than the other. Roll out the larger piece to about 5mm thick and use to line a lightly greased pie dish, about 40 fl oz / 1.2 litres in capacity. Take pastry right to the end of the flat lip of the dish, trimming off excess. Roll out the smaller pastry rectangle so that it will more than cover the pie top. Spoon in meat filling until its at least level with the top of the dish, preferably mounding it a little higher. Ladle in enough of the meaty stock liquid to come 2cm short of the top of the pie; ie not quite covering the meat.
Brush pastry edges with a little beaten egg and cover the pie with the rolled out lid piece, crimping the edges with your thumb to ensure the lid is well sealed down. Use trimmings to decorate the pie crust as you see fit and use beaten egg to stick these on. Brush remaining egg all over the piecrust; make 3 deep x-shaped vent holes in the pastry top at each end of the pie and bake in moderately hot oven at 375f for approx 50 mins-1 hr until pastry is puffed up, golden and crisping at the edges without scorching.
Serve with mashed potato, buttered cabbage and carrots.
Message 9 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 19, 2006 9:26:56 PM

Morecambe bay's tiny brown indigenous tiny brown shrimps are the real deal here but don't give up if you cannot get them. Try to source the smallest sweetest shrimps/prawns you can find and fine chop them into small dice.

For 1lb and 2oz / 2 and 1/4 cups tiny shrimps, you will need-
1/2 cup unsalted butter
pinch of mace
pinch cayenne pepper or dash of Tabasco if cayenne is unavailable

Clarify the butter by heating it gently in heavy saucepan and let simmer for 10 mins. After that, watch it like a hawk. The milk solids that first show themselves as white flecks will start to go a golden darker brown. This can happen pretty quickly and as soon as you see the flecks darken, strain the butter through 2 layers of kitchen paper and reserve about 1/3 of it, keeping it warm so it doesn't set.
Return the rest to the heat with the shrimps and the spices. Simmer for about 5 mins then pour into several small china ramekins. You then cover the shrimps in the ramekin with a layer of the clarified butter, gently pouring it all over them until they are totally hidden under a layer of rapidly solidifying butter. This keeps the potted shrimp up to 1 wk fresh in the fridge and to enjoy them traditionally and at their best, spread a thin cold layer of them over hot toast so the shrimp butter just starts to melt.


To make approx 12 you will need-
2/3 cup self rising flour
2 tsp extrafine sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg, beaten
5 fl oz milk
butter for greasing

Sift flour, sugar and salt together. Beat in egg then add milk, bit by bit. You are aiming to produce a batter that is not runny but just pourable.

Heat a frypan over medium heat and lightly coat with butter. pour batter from a tablespoon to make little pancakes. Don't do them too close in case they spread out too much. Its useful to do a tester pancake first to see that the pan is hot enough. If it is, the batter will start to bubble and look porous in less than a minute. As soon as this occurs, flip the drop scone over and fry for 1 more minute. Remove and let rest on a plate for another minute before devouring. serve with butter and whatever you like drizzled on top.


One of the most ancient recorded puddings made and eaten in Britain.

For 4 people you will need-
2 tbsp honey
4 tbsp sherry or brandy
1 glass/ approx 7 fl oz sweet white wine
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
19 fl oz heavy cream

Dissolve honey in the sherry/brandy and the wine. Add lemon zest.
Beat cream until its just beginning to set then fold in the honey mixture. Pour into the serving bowls and chill until needed.
Serve this with ginger snap cookies.


5 fl oz fresh squeezed apple juice
scant 1/4 cup extrafine sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
juice of 1/2 lemon
4 dessert apples, peeled, cored and quartered
2 tbsp unsalted butter
generous 9 fl oz heavy cream

In small bowl, mix together apple juice, sugar, 2 large pinches cinnamon and lemon juice. Cover and place in fridge.
Cut each apple qwuarter lengthwise into thin slices. Melt butter in large frypan and now add apple slices, scatter them with remaining cinnamon and fry for about 2 mins onb each side until lightly golden. You may need to fry in batches. Remove from heat and place to one side to cool.
To make syllabub-place cream in large bowl and using a whisk, to slowly beat in the chilled apple juice mixture. Keep on whisking until the cream mixture starts to hold its shape in soft peaks.
Reserve a few apple slices to add as a garnish. Divide rest of the apple slices between 6 sundae/dessert dishes and top with syllabub. Decorate with reserved apple slices and chill in fridge if not eating immediately.


Makes approx 25
1/3 cup English Stilton cheese 9or use other good blue cheese)
1 tsp English Mustard
2/3 cup all purpose flour
scant 1/2 cup room temp butter
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Place all ingredients except for walnuts into food processor; season and pulse until it forms into a ball. At this point, add walnuts and pulse for a few more seconds.
Turn dough onto floured surface and divide into 2 equal pieces. Roll each half into an even sausage about 12 cm long and 4-5 cm diameter. Chill this in fridge for 30 mins.
Heat oven to 375f. Slice the dough 'sausages' into 1cm thick discs and lay them onto a baking tray, set apaprt. Bake for 18-20 mins until golden then cool on wire rack. Keeps for up to a fortnight; serve with dips and with other cheeses.


1 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp butter
1/2 cup seedless raisins
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
4 tbsp Cider vinegar
pinch each of ground nutmeg and ground cinnamon
1/2 cup redcurrant jelly/jam/chutney

Place sugar and 1/4 pint/ 5 fl oz water in a pan and heat till sugar dissolves. Bring to boil and cook for 10 mins until slightly syrupy. Add remaining ingredients and simmer gently for 10 mins until jelly has dissolved and raisins are plump. Served with a country ham, baked gammon and any kind of pork dish, be it BBQ ribs to roast pork tenderloin.
Message 10 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 20, 2006 10:19:42 AM
Chicken can you help me?

Years ago I lived and worked in England. I was 18 and I began learning how to cook while over there. I wasn't very good at it and needed simple recipes to follow. I found a recipe in a magazine for a lamb stew that was served over rice. I just remember that there was stewing lamb, worcestershire sauce, vinegar and onions in the ingredients. I can't remember anything else about it but it was so delicious. Could you possibly post a recipe for lamb stew? Thanks for any help.

Message 11 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 20, 2006 10:07:52 PM
Hi Chicken!

I noticed one of your recipes calls for English mustard. What is that?


Message 12 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 21, 2006 10:22:26 AM

re the lamb stew, I can't think of any classic british lamb stews served over rice but I can post some classic lamb stews such as Lancashire hotpot that if you like, you can serve with a portion of rice underneath. We do like our curried lamb with rice though! Judy, I will trawl my own trusty tested recipe collection and post some recipes. It seems like many Americans are not too keen on lamb or mutton whereas we Brits love it.


English Mustard is in a little yellow labelled glass bottle, a yellow tin or in a yellow tube and is famously made by the Colmans Mustard Co. The current owners of the company lived not far from my childhood home. Its a hot mustard, yellow with turmeric and you can get it as a paste or as a mustard powder that you reconstitute with water. Although it is a similiar colour and texture to your French's mustard, its much hotter and a joint of beef with a dusting of this powder or a smear of the mustard paste on it prior to roasting is delectable.

Here is a link to a mail order supplier-
Message 13 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 21, 2006 10:23:35 AM

anybody intrigued by any of the products on that website above, wanting to know more, please ask away!
Message 14 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 21, 2006 12:53:42 PM
You ARE THE BEST. Thanks for the recipes for Pasties & Steak & Kidney Pie! The British Food link is fabulous! Heinz Salad Cream - YUM! (Page 7 or 8 on the link under condiments.) Got hooked on this when my sister lived in Belize. The best for potato salad.
Chicken, do the items on this link ship from GB?
Message 15 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 21, 2006 12:56:15 PM
Can't wait to try the Stilton Biscuits!
Message 16 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 21, 2006 1:34:25 PM
Thanks Chicken

I absolutely adore lamb and don't eat enough of it. I am also a huge fan of curry so if you've got a good recipe I would love to have it, especially now that winter is coming. I would also like a really nice trifle recipe if you've got one.

As for the British products, I can buy just about everything in my local grocery store that I looked at on the website you posted. Heinz salad cream, Bird's Custard Powder, Coleman's mustard, etc..... Maybe it's because we are part of the Commonwealth or maybe because we are so multicultural in Canada especially in Ottawa, the Capital City, that just about everything is readily available to us. Immigrants and diplomats regularly express their pleasure and comment about how easy it is to transition here when it comes to their food.
Message 17 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 22, 2006 1:07:33 PM

I am so pleased you like this thread. I have wanted to start a Brit food thread for ages but kept worrying about whether I was being presumptious...or something like that.
Re shipping-I would imagine the items are imported from the UK as opposed to being manufactured in the US.


We have access to a great deal of info and products from the America's. Obviously we have had the historical/political links for centuries and of course, Canada was and remains a major emigration destination for many Brits (My DH Ed's children have a Canadian grandmother who hailed from Toronto!) but in addition, here in East Anglia, the presence of the largest USA airforce bases at USAF Lakenheath and USAF Mildenhall means that locally, the love of and knowledge about American/Canadian food is more developed. To take this to its logical conclusion, America's multicultural foundations have ensured that our region was also exposed to many other ethnic cuisines/ customs via the forces men.

BTW- in one of our national daily newspapers- 'The Daily Mail', a double page spread featured some recently re-discovered murals painted by USAF airmen from the USA and Canada all over the base building walls. They are beautiful classic Americana type paintings featuring scenes of cowboys riding horses, the classic American eagle and the 'Stars and Stripes' (in my opinion, one of the best flags EVER) scantily clad 'Betty Page' style pinup girls, renditions of well known American buildings, landscapes etc, Disney characters....

They are soooo amazing and made me feel quite emotional because these murals were clearly the work of some very very homesick, lovelorn men, miles from home and marooned in a country with severe food rationing and shortages, what must have felt like awful weather, a population that during the 1940's suffered from insularity and a poor transport infrastructure and in East Anglia, a very flat and undifferentiated landscape......poor boys.

I wonder if anyone can google up a postable link to these murals. Have any of you got relatives who were based in the English counties of Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire who might remember these murals? They were all over the inside of Nissan huts and the other base buildings. are some recipes for lamb stews that sound similiar to the one remembered. Whereabouts in the UK did you eat your lamb stew, Valli? I ask this because two of the recipes I am about to post are very very regional and the first one is almost never heard of or eaten outside of its local area!

CAWL' (promounced like 'vowel')

Described as the ultimate economical meal in a bowl, Cawl is very very localised to its origin- Wales. However, every Welsh cook will swear their version to be THE 'Cawl'! This recipe is from a chef writer called Tom Norrington -Davies and is the cawl made by his Gran who lived in Cardiganshire- North Wales.

Cawl is a very soupy stewy dish. You can use any cut of lamb for it; the cheaper the better if you are wanting to stay true to the working class money conscious ethos of this dish. It was historically a dish born out of the need to use up the leftovers from the Sunday Roast Lamb. Toms Gran used breast of Lamb (I went to university in Cardiff-the capital city of Wales and recall that the Welsh LOVE their rolled, stuffed breast of lamb!), but he uses Shank here because he feels it makes a superior broth. He advises (as do I), starting the cooking a day in advance as the more economical cuts of lamb tend to be fattier. Making it a day early and letting it rest overnight in the fridge allows for effortless skimming off of all the excess fat from the broth before you add it to the meat and vegeatbles.


For 6 people you will need-

3 shanks of lamb or any other cut (shoulder, breast, neck etc) or leftover uncooked meat
1 whole unpeeled onion
2 tomatoes-optional
1 carrot
1 celery stick
3 tbsp malt vinegar
2-3 tbsp salt

2 tbsp fat or oil
2 peeled and chopped onions
2 diced carrots
2 peeled, trimmed and chopped leeks
1 turnip or potato, peeled and rough diced
1 celery stick, chopped
approx 3 and 1/2 tbsp red lentils
about 3 tbsp Pearl barley
3 and 1/2 pints (or thereabout) of the broth from the cooked meat-whatever is left over, really!
salt to taste

Put lamb in large saucepan along with 7 pints water and add onions, tomatoes if using, carrot, celery, vinegar and salt. Simmer this (but do NOT boil) for about 3 hrs, skimming occasionally to remove any 'scum' that rises to the top, until the meat is tender or nearly falling off the bone if you are using shanks.
Remove the meat and veg-you can throw out the veg- and cool the resultant broth in the fridge overnight. The next day, the fat will be a thick hard 'lid', which you then remove and either discard or store in a jar to roast potatoes in. If you like, you can also trim the shanks of any unwanted fat too. After removing the fat off the broth, shred the meat into bits, ready for the soup.

To make the soup, heat the fat or oil in a large pan and gently saute the onions, leeks, carrots, turnip/potato and celery.
When the veg is just becoming tender, add lentils, pearl barley, the shredded lamb and the broth. Cook for about 1 and 1/2 hrs or until the broth has thickened, with the lentils barely soft, but chewy. If it is all thickening to the point where you become alarmed, do not worry. Just add a little more water and adjust the seasoning as you go. With the flavours of the vegetables and lamb in the pot, you are in no danger of producing an over bland cawl! Chopped mint leaves at the table makes a nice addition; either scatter the leaves as they are onto the surface or fine chop them, mix with equal proportions of hot water and malt vinegar then add a pinch of sugar, stir and you have classic British Mint sauce to go with your lamb. Supply plenty of good bread to mop up the broth too.


This is arguably the most well known of the Northern English meat and potato 'pie' like one-pot dishes. It is an English 'version' of Irish Stew, I guess. It takes its name from the deep, flowerpot style cooking vessel that it was traditionally cooked and served in. The meat in a hotpot must be mutton, hogget or lamb. Originally 'scrag end' or lamb neck was used and cooked on the bone, but in modern times where ecomony need not be so much of a consideration, I would recommend neck, best end lamb chops, off the bone diced shoulder meat or off the bone neck. Use a wide casserole dish or stewpot to make hotpot and seal the meat in that. If you are using a piedish, you will need a frying pan to start off with.


For 4 people you will need-

2 Lb of any of the lamb meat cuts named above
4-5 lamb kidneys-optional!
2 level tbsp flour
2 tbsp butter or fat/oil of your choice
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme or equivalent in dried thyme
a dash of Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 tsp salt
3 large floury potatoes (use ones suitable for boiling) sliced into round slices
salt and black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 300f/ 150c/ gas 2

Toss lamb and kidneys (if using) in the flour to coat well and season with a little salt and pepper. Heat the butter/ oil and brown the meat in small batches-don't overcrowd the frypan or the meat will steam rather than sear and seal all over. As each batch is done, remove it to a bowl.
Now fry onions in same pan until they are softened and then return meat to the pot and stir it all together. If you are using a frypan to start with, now is the time to transfer the meat and onions to your piedish/cooking dish.
Add the bayleaf and thyme and then barely cover everything with water. You don't want it swimming in water. Bring liquid to a simmer for 15 mins then add the Worcestershire sauce and salt, checking the seasoning at this point in time. You may want more salt.
Now top the meat with the round slices of potato, slightly overlapping each slice with the next one. This overlapping is why you don't want to cut the slices too thick. However, you need them thick enough to avoid them cooking too fast and subsequently to then burn so don't slice the potatoes so thin that they are opaque when held to the light!
As you layer the potato slices, season them with ground black pepper. When the top is covered with a good layer of slices, bake the hotpot covered, for about 1 and a 1/2 hours, then uncover it and cook for a final 30 minutes or until the potato slices have turned golden brown.
Message 18 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 22, 2006 1:25:55 PM
Vallihound- I posted quite a few curry type recipes on MonaLisa's Indian food thread. Its an archived one so have a look and I pretty much think that any meat curry recipe can have lamb as the meat or substituted for whatever meat is specified. Lamb curries are popular in the asian subcontinent because of course, for Muslims, pork is taboo and beef is taboo for Hindu's.


This is not what you think-if the title of this recipe misleads, then so does its ingredients because Welsh rarebit is so much more than the sum of its parts-namelt cheese on toast. In the Uk in the days before subway, panini and cafe lattes, Rarebit was a cafe and tearoom standard.
The crumblier the cheese you use, the better. If you have access to regional British cheeses, then choose Cheshire cheese, Lancashire cheese or Caerphilly cheese from the caves of South Wales, the latter being the totally authentic 'rabbit' experience! If not, just go for a reliably crumbly cheese.

For 4 people you will need-

1 generous cup plus 2 tbsp grated crumbly cheese
6 tbsp Beer or Guinness- DON'T use lager!
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
a decent splash of Worcestershire sauce or less according to taste
4 slices of decent bread for toasting-white or brown
A bag of all purpose flour, standing by

Gently heat the cheese, beer and butter in a heavy saucepan over a low heat, stirring all the time until it starts to get creamy, then add the mustard and Worcestershire sauce. On occasion, things in the pan might look a little curdled, as if the beer and cheese had taken a dislike to one another(!). If the appearance of this bothers you (but it has no effect upon the flavour-believe me), feel free to add a tsp of flour to help stabilise the ingredients into becoming a paste.
Allow this paste to cool. It will now look slightly fibrous.
Heat a grill/overhead toaster and start to toast the bread on both sides. When it is golden brown, lay the toasted bread slices on an ovenproof tray or grill/broiler pan and spread it with a generous amount of the paste. Return the slices to the overhead grill/toaster or heat source and heat until the topping is melty and golden brown. Eat immediately.

This is just great when you have had a few drinks and return home starved. Its also indecently comforting on a cold winters night.
Message 19 of 175

Classic British foods and recipes-

Classic British foods and recipes-

in reply to Sep 22, 2006 4:31:51 PM
Can't wait to try the hotpot!!!!
I am sooo jealous that you can find these treats in your local market. In the US you have to find a GB store.
Message 20 of 175