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Entertaining on rations – Woolton Pie and help I’ve discovered puddings!

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Today was a wartime culinary fiesta! I decided to cook the well known Woolton Pie named after Lord Woolton, the Minister of Food during WW2. It was first created at the Savoy Hotel of all places (….not sure it can still be found on the menu nowadays mind) and became a very well known wartime dish. I thought it would be the perfect dish to serve my vegetarian friend Jackie who came round for dinner this evening.

This delightful plate of home comfort was closely followed by my first ever home made treacle sponge pudding (slow cooker style of course) OMG I can’t believe I’ve gone all this time without cooking a treacle sponge pudding ….see I told you I was going to put on weight! Well everything in moderation as they say (although it was a good job I only had a small pudding bowl 😉

The great thing about this style of eating is that it involves cooking from scratch and appreciating the infrequent moments of sweet treats designed for sharing with friends or family. Best served with great conversation, plenty of laughter and a warming cup of tea – what could be better for the soul I ask you? You certainly appreciate these moments more when they are scarce.

So today’s food intake….
Breakfast
Porridge with stewed apple (turning out to be a personal fave)

Lunch
Leftover smoked mackerel with Severn Project salad leaves – yum delicious!

Dinner
Lord Woolton Pie
1lb dices vegetables (I used carrots, parsnips, onions, broccoli) the original recipe suggests cauliflower, swede and spring onion as well)
1 teaspoon of vegetable stock
1 tablespoon oatmeal
about 3/4 pint water

Cook the onion in some butter, add the veg, stock and liquid and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the vegetables are just starting to soften. Transfer to a casserole dish and sprinkle with parsley (I used thyme), season and cover with mashed potato (a variation to the recipe is pastry) Sprinkle with a little cheese and bake in a moderate oven until browned. YUM YUM YUM!

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Pudding – Treacle Sponge (thanks to Mrs G Pratchett of Enfield as featured in the Daily Telegraph’s Good Eating suggestions to Wartime Dishes Book)
This pudding is actually vegetarian and I also made it gluten free, using gluten free flour

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Ingredients
4oz self raising flour
1 1/2 oz suet (I used vegetarian)
A pinch of salt
1/2 teacup of golden syrup
1/2 teacup of milk
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon sugar (not quite sure why you need this)
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Heat milk and syrup in a pan. While cooking mix all dry ingredients, then add milk and syrup (when it’s cooled down a bit). Beat well, put in greased basin. Cover with greaseproof paper and foil and steam for 2 hours. I steamed it on high setting in my slow cooker for 3.5 hours and it was UTTERLY AMAZING!!!!

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…..a brisk walk through the park to escort Jackie to get her bus home was definitely needed. What a wonderful evening, i feel rather pleased with myself for my first steamed pudding efforts – compliments to Lord Woolton and Mrs G Pratchett!

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