A Look at Shrove Tuesday

Elizabeth Cleland's 'Common Pancakes'

A Look at Shrove Tuesday with a Very Old and Decadent Pancake Recipe Where does the tradition of eating pancakes on Shrove Tuesday come from? And for how long has this been going on? The popular theory goes that in the past people would make pancakes on Shrove Tuesday as a good way to use up all the remaining eggs,…

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Whisky Bitters, an excellent tonic

Whisky Bitters

Whisky Bitters I recently came across a formula for a variety of bitters made with whisky, in Isobel Johnstone’s The Cook and Housewife’s Manual, an old Scottish recipe book first published in 1826. When we think of bitters, it is Angostura that usually first comes to mind. Either that, you might think of all the glamorous amari that come from…

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Homemade Hot Sauce

Homemade Hot sauce

Homemade Hot Sauce Here is an excellent recipe for a homemade hot sauce. This one is made with dried red chillies, sugar, salt, garlic and lime juice, and nothing else besides water. There you have a blood red, spicy homemade hot sauce that tastes so good it will ruin your palate for everything else. There are so many hot sauces…

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A History of Fried Chicken

Hannah Glasse' 1747 Recipe for Fried Chicken

A History of Fried Chicken Fried chicken is still enjoyed as it always has been in the southern states of America – at its best in Mom and Pop style restaurants, preferably fried in the traditional lodge skillet. But until recently the rest of the world saw fried chicken just as an alternative to McDonalds. In the search for new…

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The Origins of Kedgeree


The Origins of Kedgeree Kedgeree is just one of many wonderful British dishes for which we have to thank India. Without the influence of Indian cookery we wouldn’t have favourites such as chutney, as well as of course, the classic ‘British’ curry chicken tikka masala. India has ultimately transformed British food and now Britons are devoted, as well as totally…

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Empire Biscuits, A Hateful History

Empire Biscuits

Empire Biscuits, A Hateful History The Empire biscuit, old-fashioned and sickly sweet, must qualify as a children’s treat – two shortbread biscuits glued together with jam, on top a layer of fondant icing, and for decoration a glacé cherry on top, or what is usually preferred – a jelly tot. The air of nostalgia around Empire biscuits, and other fancies…

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Seakale from Angus

Seakale from Angus, Scotland.

Seakale from Angus This pale and beautiful seakale has come from Eassie farm near Glamis, in Angus. Sandy and Heather Pattullo who run Eassie farm are famous in the restaurant world for their asparagus, which they have been selling to the finest restaurants in Britain for almost 30 years. They have been growing seakale for just as long, supplying renowned…

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Lorne Sausage, A History

Lorne Sausage

Lorne Sausage Lorne sausage, the vivid pink beef sausage, usually sandwiched inside a morning roll is a firm Scottish favourite. The cheapest of the lot are made of mystery meat, and lots of fat, so they will be exactly half the size they are to begin with after frying. Brown sauce or ketchup is indispensable for these cheaper versions, whose…

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Peasemeal, An Ingredient Unique to Scotland


Peasemeal, An Ingredient Unique to Scotland This yellow brown dusty smeddum is peasemeal, an ingredient peculiar to Scotland. Peasemeal is a bit of an obscure ingredient today. It was once commonplace in Scotland, as well as in northern England, but its association with poverty caused it to die out. Despite this, peasemeal is currently enjoying a revival with the growing interest…

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The Scottish Cookery Book, by Andrew Stewart

The Scottish Cookery Book by Andrew Stewart Housed in the National Library of Scotland there is a book called The Scottish Cookery Book, by Andrew Stewart. This book was written with the aim to record and promote traditional Scottish recipes, and ultimately to defend and cement a national cuisine: ‘This book has been prepared with the view of giving in…

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