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Farmhouse Fare

The following recipes have been obtained from various sources
and are not all Kentish, but they are all traditional English country dishes -
some dating back hundreds of years.

Spring Soup

1 large lettuce
12 spring onions
1 pint milk
1 pint stock or water
crusts of bread
1 tablespoon cornflour

Watercress, endive or sorrel may be used either with, or in place of, the
lettuce for a change.

Wash lettuce and onions, shred lettuce, and slice onions thinly. Melt dripping in
saucepan, and fry lettuce and onions for about 5 minutes. Add stock and part of
milk, and let simmer gently for 10 minutes. Mix cornflour with remainder of
milk, pour into soup, and stir until it boils, allowing to simmer for another 10
minutes. Season to taste with pepper, salt, sugar and a little nutmeg. Cut crust
of bread into thin strips, dry quite crisp in oven, put into tureen with parsley
picked small, and pour soup over.

Potato Soup

1 lb. potatoes
2 small onions
1 dessertspoonful sago
1 oz. butter
1 pint water
salt & pepper

Peel potatoes and onions, and cut into slices. Put them into a saucepan with the butter
put on the lid and let them cook together for 5 minutes or so. Shake the pan from time
to time. Add water and simmer gently for about an hour. Then add the milk and the sago
and cook until the sago is transparent. Season, and serve hot.

Oat Soup With Cream

1 cupful rolled oats
4 teacupfuls white stock
3 cloves
1 teaspoonful sugar
2 sliced onions
1 little bayleaf
1 teacupful thin cream

Put the ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 1 hour. Strain through a cheese-cloth
put again into a saucepan, and add the sugar and cream. Pour into a tureen which
contains a lump of butter, a little salt and cayenne, and serve.

Fish Pie

1 1/2 lbs. fresh filleted haddock
1/2 lb. soaked bread-crusts
1 large cupful grated suet
1 egg
chopped parsley
seasoning to taste

Wash the haddock and put in a ovenproof pie-dish. Make a forcemeat of the
other ingredients, binding together with the egg. Cover the fish with forcemeat
and bake in a hot oven.

Soused Herrings

4 or more herrings
1 onion
seasoning to taste

Wash and scale the herrings, cut off the heads and remove the backbones. Slice the
onion finely, season with salt and pepper, and lay in a pie dish. Roll up fish
tightly, and place over the onions. Cover with vinegar and a little water, and bake
in a slow oven for about an hour.

Fowl Pie

1 old fowl
2 chopped onions
1 stick of celery
1/2 lb. ham, cut small
a blade of mace, a few peppercorns, a little thyme, tied in a muslin bag
3 hard boiled eggs
some chopped parsley

Prepare the fowl and cut into neat pieces, and put into a saucepan with the
onions, celery, and ham and seasoning bag; salt, of course, should be added.
Cover with cold water, bring to the boil and simmer till quite tender. Turn
out and leave till cold; then remove the fat, and seasoning bag. Have ready 3
hard-boiled eggs and some chopped parsley. Put a layer of fowl in a pie-dish
with some of the gravy, and a layer of eggs and parsley alternatively with the meat
until the dish is filled. Cover with a good pastry crust and bake in a brisk oven
till the pastry is nicely browned.

Gipsy Pie

1 tender rabbit
1/2 lb. beef steak
1/4 lb. cooked ham or pork sausages
2 teaspoonfuls chopped parsley
salt, pepper and nutmeg

Soak rabbit in cold salted water for 1 1/2 hours. Wipe dry, joint; slice ham; or skin
sausages, and with floured hands make meat into round balls. Cut steak in small pieces.
Arrange rabbit, ham or balls, and beef in pie-dish. Sprinkle over the parsley grated
nutmeg, pepper, salt to taste. Add stock, cover with pastry, and bake slowly for 1 1/2
hours after the pastry has risen.

Young England Pudding

Make some first class paste by mixing one pound of flour, half a pound
of beef or mutton suet chopped finely, a teaspoonful of salt and half a
teaspoonful of pepper with water. Roll it out and line a basin, then roll
seven or eight very thin pieces the size of the basin. Then get a pound
of treacle or golden syrup and pour a little on the pastry, followed by a
little lemon juice and the rind of a lemon, chopped very finely. Add the
other pieces of pastry, then the treacle and lemon until the basin is full.
Boil the pudding in a cloth for one hour and serve covered with treacle.

Mock Goose

1 bullock's heart
2 bay leaves
4 cloves
2 meat cubes
4 large onions, grated
1 tablespoonful cornflour
8 or 10 large sage leaves, chopped fine
1/4 lb. chopped suet or bacon
1/2 lb. breadcrumbs
1 egg
pepper and salt

Well wash the heart and place in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Add the pepper
and salt, bay leaves, cloves and meat cubes. Simmer gently for 4 or 5 hours on the side
of the stove. Set aside until neat day. Take off the fat from the stock. Mix together, with
the egg to bind, the onions, sage leaves, chopped suet or bacon and breadcrumbs. Make into
forcemeat balls, leaving a little to stuff the heart. Put the heart with the forcemeat
balls round it in a baking-tin, cover with dripping and bake in a sharp oven for 1/2
hour. Strain the stock in which the heart was boiled: use about 1 pint to thicken with the
cornflour. This makes a good gravy to serve with the heart.
The remainder of the stock makes an excellent soup if all kinds of vegetables are cut up
and added. Thicken with cornflour. The remainder of the heart can be minced for next
day's dinner, and served with brown gravy and baked potatoes.

Bacon in Cider

1 corner bacon (6 lbs.)
1 pint cider
1 bunch sweet herbs
1 dozen cloves
1 teacupful brown breadcrumbs
2 ozs. brown sugar

Soak bacon overnight. Then bring to the boil, pour off water and add fresh. Add herbs
and simmer slowly, allowing 20 minutes to each pound, and pouring in the cider 1 hour
before it is done. When cooked, let ham cool and remove skin; cover with sugar
and breadcrumbs, and stick with cloves. Bake till brown.

Huntingdon Fidget Pie

1 lb. cooking apples
1/2 lb. onions
3/4 lb. streaky, home-cured bacon
pastry crust

Put 1 layer of apples at the bottom of a pie-dish, on top of this place a layer of sliced
onions, followed by a layer of bacon cut into dice. Repeat until dish is full, adding to
each layer a sprinkling of pepper and salt. Add a very little water, cover with a good
pastry crust, and bake in a moderate oven for 2 hours.

Yorkshire Old Wives' Sod

5 good-sized eggs
3 gills new milk
2 thin oatcakes
pepper & salt

Break the eggs into a basin and beat for 2 minutes. Add the milk and seasoning, mixing
well. Have ready a baking-pan nicely greased with fresh butter. Pour in the beaten eggs
and milk mixture. Next break the oatcakes into pieces about 1/2 in. square. Sprinkle
them on top of the sod. Add a few nuts of butter and place in a moderate oven. Bake for
20 minutes. If the oatcakes are lightly toasted and buttered before breaking up they
make the sod a tastier dish.

Cotswold Dumplings

2 whole eggs
4 ozs. grated cheese
2 ozs. butter

Stir grated cheese and creamed butter together, add beaten egg and pepper and salt to
taste, and enough white breadcrumbs to make into a stiff mixture. Form into dumplings
roll into breadcrumbs and fry in hot fat a biscuit brown. Serve with vegetable puree
preferably tomato, broccoli or onion.

Gooseberry Bread Pudding

1 pint young gooseberries
1 1/2 gills milk
1 thick slice of white bread
2 eggs

Cut the crust off the bread, on to which pour the boiling milk. Cover this with a plate
and let it stand for 1/2 hour, then crush the bread and beat in the eggs. Add 1 pint of
young gooseberries which have previously been topped, tailed and washed. Mix well
together, put into a well-greased basin and cover with greased paper. Steam for 1 hour.
do not add sugar before cooking.

Blackberry Cobbler

1 quart blackberries
1 1/2 tablespoonfuls castor sugar
2 1/2 tablespoonfuls milk
1 tablespoonful lemon juice
2 cups flour
1 teaspoonful salt
5 tablespoonfuls lard
2 tablespoonfuls butter
4 teaspoonfuls baking powder(or self raising flour)
1/2 cup water

Place the berries, sweetened to taste, in a buttered pie-dish and sprinkle with the lemon
juice, and dab with pieces of butter. Rub the lard lightly into the flour, sifted with the
baking powder and salt. Stir in the sugar and milk and roll out the paste tot he size of
the pie-dish. Place on top of the fruit, neatening the edges, which must not come over the
brim, and prick with a fork. Bake in a hot oven for 1/2 hour and serve with custard sauce
or cream. This is enough for 6 people and is delicious.

Great Grannie's Gingerbreads

1 lb. flour
1/2 lb. treacle
1/2 lb. sugar
1/2 lb. fresh butter
1/2 lb. good ginger

Mix 24 hours before baking, place a piece of candied peel on each biscuit, and bake in a
quick oven. If preferred, add 1 or 2 drops of essence of lemon and a dust of baking powder.

Old English Cider Cake

1/4 lb. butter
4 ozs. sugar
2 eggs
8 ozs. flour
1 teaspoonful bi-carbonate of soda
1/2 a nutmeg, well grated
1 teacupful cider

Beat the butter and sugar to a cream. Add the eggs, well beaten, then 4 ozs. flour sifted
with the bi-carbonate of soda, and the nutmeg. Pour over all the cider beaten to a froth
and mix thoroughly. Stir in the other 4 0zs. flour and mix well together. Bake in a
shallow well-greased tin in a moderate oven for 45 minutes. This cake when properly made
is delicious, with a distinctive flavour.

Ripe Tomato Chutney

8 lbs. ripe tomatoes
1 lb. onions
3 ozs. salt
1/2 oz. cloves
cayenne pepper & ground ginger to taste, 3/4 teaspoonful of each

Boil for 2 hours, then beat through a sieve until nothing remains but the seeds, skin, etc.
Return to pan, add 1 pint vinegar and 6 ozs. sugar, boil for 1/2 hour or until thick.

Mangold Chutney

4 lbs. mangolds
1 lb. shallots
3/4 lb. sugar
3 pints spiced vinegar
small tablespoonful turmeric

Take the mangolds, cut up and put through the mincer, using the largest knife. Sprinkle
well with salt. Leave until next day. Then strain and add shallots, minced fine, sugar
and vinegar. Boil altogether for about 1 hour. Just before taking off, put in the
turmeric. This quantity makes 8 lbs. of chutney.

Blackcurrant Jam

3 lbs. sugar
1 pint of water
(to every 1/2 lbs. of fruit)

Stalk and cut brown ends off fruit. Boil fruit and water together for 20 minutes, then
add the sugar and boil for 5 minutes. Made in this way, the preserve will keep
for 2 or 3 years.

Mild Brown Ale

5 oz. hops
8 gallons water
2 oz. yeast
3 lbs. brown sugar

Boil the hops and water together slowly for 40 to 50 minutes, strain over the sugar; add
yeast when the liquor is lukewarm, turn into a pan or tub to ferment for 4 days, then
cask or bottle for use as wanted.

Crab Apple Wine

Put 1 gallon of sliced crab apples into a gallon of water, and let them soak for a fortnight.
Strain and add 3 lbs. of demerara sugar to each gallon of liquor. Stir well and frequently
until fermentation takes place, which should be in a day or a day and a half. Leave for 3
days, and then put wine into cask or jar. Lay muslin over the opening until the hissing
noise (which tells that the wine is working) has ceased. Then cork tightly, and bottle
after 3 months.
This wine is one of the most delicious of our country wines, and improves with keeping.

Salves and Country Cures

Kentish Elderflower Ointment

1 lb. lard (clarified)
1 gallon elderflower heads

Melt the lard, put in the elderflowers and boil till pulped. Strain through a gravy
strainer, and put in a few drops of turpentine. Put into small jars, and leave to set.

A Good Liniment

1 cupful vinegar
1 cupful turpentine
a piece of camphor
1 egg

A good old-fashioned liniment for sprains and chilblains can be made from the above
ingredients. Mix all together well in a bottle until the resulting liquid is white
and creamy. It is then ready to use.

Farmhouse Herb Salve

1 lb. home-rendered lard
1 good handful of each of the following:

Cut the herbs into 1 inch lengths. Put into an earthenware pot with the lard, and bring
to the boil in the oven. Simmer for 1/2 hour. Then strain into pots and tie down when cool.
This salve can be made from dried herbs, but is better to use them fresh. It is excellent
for all sores and bruises, and is particularly good also as a veterinary aid for
softening the udders of newly-calved cows.