Cabbage Recipes from Yesteryear

“Cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education” … Mark Twain. 🙂

Let’s dispense with the college education and cook up some good old fashioned family cabbage recipes.

These recipes come from a book called “Science in the kitchen” published over 120 years ago. I’ve been trawling through to find the best of the recipes that can be incorporated into today’s lifestyles.

They favoured using cream quite a lot, but lower fat alternatives could probably be used. Also it seems they used to do an awful lot of boiling – steaming is probably a healthier option. A little intuition and experimenting may be needed!

Baked Cabbage.

Prepare and chop a firm head of young white cabbage, boil until tender, drain, and set aside until nearly cold. Then add two well-beaten eggs, salt to taste, and a half cup of single cream or rich milk. Mix and bake in a pudding dish until lightly browned.

“This would probably be best baked in a medium preheated oven. The time depends on the size of the dish etc;. I would check it every 10-15 minutes”

Cabbage and Tomatoes.

Boil finely chopped cabbage in as little water as possible. When tender, add half the quantity of hot stewed tomatoes, boil together for a few minutes, being careful to avoid burning, season with salt if desired, and serve. If preferred, a little single cream may be added just before serving.

“I haven’t tried it yet, but I think you could probably use a tin of tomatoes if you haven’t any fresh ones. Heat through first.”

Cabbage Hash
Chop fine, equal parts of cold boiled potatoes and boiled cabbage, and season with salt. To each quart of the mixture add one half or three quarters of a cup of single cream; mix well and boil till well heated.

“Not sure what a ‘quart’ is in todays weights and measures 🙂 but I would suggest adding cream a little at a time, and judging how much you need as you go.”

Chopped Cabbage or Cabbage Salad.

Take one pint of finely chopped cabbage; pour over it a dressing made of three tablespoonfuls of lemon juice, two tablespoonfuls of sugar, and a half cup of whipped cream, thoroughly beaten together in the order named; or serve with sugar and diluted lemon juice.

Mashed Cabbage.

Cut a fine head of cabbage into quarters, and cook until tender. When cabbage starts to cook, add 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into quarters. When vegetables are tender, drain through a colander, press out the water and mash very fine. Season with cream, and salt if desired.

Stewed Cabbage.

Chop cabbage quite finely, and boil for about twenty minutes. Turn into a colander and drain thoroughly; return to the pan, cover with milk, and let it boil till perfectly tender; season with salt and cream to taste. The beaten yolk of an egg, stirred in with the cream, is considered an improvement by some.

“Well… I guess there’s all sorts of things you can do with cabbages!”

But before I go, I’d like to share a recipe from my childhood that you can make with leftovers that have been cooled and put in the fridge for up to 24 hours.

Bubble & Squeak!
Mix cooked cabbage, chopped finely with cooked mashed potato in a large bowl. Bind with a beaten egg and season with some fresh chopped herbs. Form into balls, flatten and fry in hot oil until cooked on both sides and hot right through. If available, dip in beaten egg and flour before cooking to give a crispier crust.

Bon Appetit!

Linda x

Beetroot Recipes

Beetroot is incredibly good for you and as the first roots are coming out of my garden, I wanted to share some things you can do with these nourishing vegetables…

Pickled Beetroot

Beetroot is traditionally pickled for winter storage, or bottled if you have the right equipment. This simple pickling recipe is worth a try.

Prepare jars by washing and rinsing well then dry in a very slow oven. Use small beetroots for pickling, unless you have huge necked jars of course. You shouldn’t cut beetroot before cooking as the roots ‘bleed’ and lose colour and goodness.

Twist the tops off small beetroots and rinse under running water. Place in a large pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer until all beetroots are tender.

Being careful not to burn yourself, rub your finger gently over the beetroots. If the skin come away easily, they should be cooked. Drain well and leave to cool slightly.

Put as many beetroots as you can in each jar without damaging them and pour pickling vinegar over them. Seal the jars. Label and store out of direct light until needed.

Remember to use! Remove from the jar and slice or cut into small cubes to garnish a salad or mix through a green salad. They can be eaten with almost any meal. Slice and brighten up a less than colourful dinner and treat yourself to a dose of vitamins at the same time.

Beetroot Soup:

Although you should always cook beetroot whole, beetroot soup is an exception to the rule.

Home made soup is worth it’s weight in gold when you are feeding a family through the winter months.

Because everything is cooked in one pan, and the liquid is either blended with the vegetables after cooking, or eaten with the vegetables, no vitamins, minerals or taste are lost.

Ingredients
6 small beetroots
1 parsnip
1 or 2 carrots
1 onion
2-3 cloves garlic
2 stalks celery
Approx. 1litre/ 2 pints vegetable, chicken or preferred stock.
A little cooking oil
A little water

  1. Scrub or peel beetroots, parsnip and carrots. Rinse under running water.
  2. Slice the carrots and parsnip and grate the beetroots. Set aside.
  3. Chop onion, garlic and celery, then put into a large pan with a little cooking oil and a little water.
  4. Cook over a low heat, stirring to prevent the vegetables burning.
  5. When they are tender, add the grated beetroots, sliced parsnip and carrots and stir well.
  6. Add stock and stir gently. Cover the pan and bring to the boil.
  7. Then reduce the heat and simmer for about 30-40 minutes until all the vegetables are tender. Serve hot.

This soup can be blended and then returned to the pan and very gently re-heated, stirring all the time. Serve hot in individual bowls with a spoonful of single cream swirled on top.

Raw beetroot:

Beetroot can be grated raw and stirred into a green salad, or use as a garnish on a large serving dish of salad leaves. Peel first and rinse before grating.

Grated beetroot makes an excellent garnish for a hard-boiled egg dish.

Beetroot and Potato Salad:

This pink dish will get the kids interested, and it’s a great grown up salad as well!

Ingredients
about 150 ml of natural yoghurt
4 potatoes
4 beetroot,
1 small red onion
1 small green pepper

  1. Twist leaves off beetroot, rinse and cook whole in boiling water until tender. Drain and leave to cool.
  2. Scrub or peel potatoes and cook in boiling water until tender. Drain and leave to cool.
  3. When the beetroot and potatoes are completely cold, cut into cubes, roughly the same size and stir together gently in a bowl or serving dish. Stir in the finely chopped onion.
  4. In a small bowl mix together the natural yoghurt and very finely chopped green pepper.
  5. Then stir most of the yoghurt mixture through the vegetables. Keep some aside and spoon over the top.

Garnish with a few parsley leaves if you have them available, or keep a little of the finely chopped pepper to sprinkle over the salad. Chill for 10 minutes before serving.

Bon Appetit!

Linda x

Everyday Eggs

Eggs are a great source of non- (direct) meat protein and are probably the least ‘messed around with’ source.

1 egg has about 90% of the daily required amount of vitamin B12 and eggs are rich in other minerals and vitamins. They contain significant amounts of:

Vitamin A
Vitamin B2
Vitamin D
Iodine
Selenium
Protein

and tons of other good for you things.

And it’s amazing how versatile a simple egg can be. Sweet or savoury, the humble egg is an important ingredient in many recipes. This is a traditional way of poaching eggs. The splash of vinegar really works!

Poached Eggs

Ingredients:

1-2 eggs per person
Vinegar

Method:

  1. Two thirds fill a medium sized pan with water and pour in about 1 tablespoon of vinegar.
  2. Bring to the boil.
  3. Crack an egg into a small cup and then gently ‘pour’ the egg into the boiling water. Do this slowly to avoid splashing.
  4. Allow water to come up to boiling point again, then reduce heat and simmer for a few minutes until the white of the egg is totally set.

NB: Make sure the egg doesn’t sit on the bottom of the pan. Gently stir the water round with a wooden spoon to make sure egg is cooking properly.

  1. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain carefully on kitchen paper. serve on hot buttered toast. Or mash avocado flesh with a finely chopped mild chili pepper, spread on toast and pop the poached egg on top. (Yummy!)

Tip: Cook only one or two eggs at a time.

Poached eggs can also be served with gammon steaks and smoked salmon.

Boiled Egg Sandwiches

Boiled eggs are a great sandwich filler. Simply peel, slice and sandwich between 2 slices of buttered bread. Or try these ideas:

Egg Mayo:

  1. Boil, cool and peel eggs, then place into a fairly large bowl.
  2. Chop finely and stir in a light mayonnaise or natural yoghurt if preferred.
  3. Spread over buttered bread and serve as open sandwiches or cover with another slice and cut into triangles for afternoon tea.

Egg Salad Sandwich:

  1. Wash and dry lettuce and cress or watercress if preferred. Shred as finely as possible. Iceberg style lettuce can be grated if it’s crisp and solid enough.
  2. Prepare bread and butter. Spread with egg mayo (above) or slices of boiled eggs.
  3. Top with salad and another slice of bread. Push down gently and cut into squares or triangles.

With either a sliced boiled egg filling or an egg mayo filling you could add any of the following:

  • sliced ham
  • grilled bacon
  • finely chopped spring onions
  • sliced tomatoes
  • a little grated hard cheese
  • feta cheese and sliced olives
  • smoked salmon

or any other preferred sandwich filling. We used to buy ‘Americains’ in France that were basically a short french loaf filled with ham, sliced tomatoes and/or green salad, sliced boiled egg and mayonnaise. Delicious 🙂

Bon Appetit!

Linda x


P.S. I’m working on some new recipe books and the “Easy Egg Recipe” download on this page will be taken down soon so grab a copy now while it’s free!

Afternoon Tea

This week, I’ve updated and grown my Afternoon Tea & Cakes Book. I’ve been working like a crazy woman to get it done by this weekend because my jewellery making kit is arriving today and I can’t wait to get onto the new project – I’m making crocheted earrings.

They may go up on Etsy or Home of the Mall or I may do a market stall. I’ve never made jewellery before so not sure how it’s going to pan out. Watch this space, as they say, because I’m sure I’ll have to blog about it!

But for now, I thought I’d share a couple of Cheesy recipes that I’ve included in the new edition of Afternoon Tea & Cakes.

It’s up on Etsy now if you’d like to indulge in a few elegant and delicious afternoon tea parties 🙂 or pop over to the Books Section and choose your preferred retailer.

CHEESY CRUMBLES

Chewy, cheesy, bite-sized snacks

Ingredients

115g (4-5oz) Cheddar Cheese
100g (4oz) plain flour
25g. (1oz) walnuts
6 tablespoons butter
4 spring onions
1 teaspoon of wholegrain mustard

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 190˚C/375˚F/Gas mark 5.
  2. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets.
  3. Grate the cheese coarsely in a bowl.
  4. Thinly slice the spring onions and finely chop the walnuts. Stir both into the cheese.
  5. Stir in the flour and the mustard.
  6. Melt the butter and add to the cheese mixture, stirring until well blended.
  7. Shape into 2.5cm (1in) balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Flatten slightly with a spatula.
  8. Bake for about 15 minutes until golden brown
  9. Leave to cool on the sheets for 2-3 minutes before transferring to a wire tray to cool, completely.
  10. Best eaten warm and on the same day as making them although they can be stored in an airtight container in a cool place for up to 3 days.

CHEESE PUFFS

This recipe includes bacon, but a veggie substitute could be used instead.

Ingredients
500g (1lb 2oz) all butter puff pastry
100g (4oz) cheddar, grated
50g (2oz) fresh breadcrumbs
2 rashers streaky bacon, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 egg, beaten
Seasoning

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 230˚C / 450˚F / Gas mark 8.
  2. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the onion, bacon and garlic for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Stir in the breadcrumbs, cheese and mustard and season to taste.
  4. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and cut out 12 circles.
  5. Put a heaped teaspoon of the cheese mixture in the centre of each circle, then fold it n half and seal with beaten egg.
  6. Crimp the edges, transfer the pastries to a baking tray and brush the tops with beaten egg.
  7. Bake the puffs for 15 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.

Variation
Add 100g (4oz) of chorizo cut into small cubes to the filling when you fry the onion

Bon Appetit!

Linda x

Chocolate Pecan Pralines

As I’m addicted to chocolate peanuts, I thought I might try this recipe from the old fashioned candy book (published around 100 years ago!). The original recipe is below my translation.

Ingredients

*3 cups of granulated sugar,
1 cup of cream,
2 squares of chocolate, melted or grated
3 cups of pecan nuts, chopped finely
**1 cup of sugar cooked to caramel,
pecan nut halves to decorate

*Maple or brown sugar could be used in place of all or part of the quantity of granulated sugar.
**I’ve found a number of theories about caramelizing sugar but Delia seems to know what she’s talking about so I’ll go with her version. If you’ve never done this before her step by step page here makes it easy! Probably best to make it in a big pan as you’ll be pouring the chocolate mixture onto it.

Method

My translation is as follows:

  1. Put the cream and sugar in a heavy based saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved.
  2. Bring to the boil and boil until mixture is at the soft ball stage (put a tiny drop into cold water – if it pushes together smoothly, it’s ready) or, if you have a cooking thermometer, until it reaches 236 degrees.
  3. Add the melted or grated chocolate and beat it into the mixture. Then pour the mixture onto the sugar cooked to caramel. Bring back to the boil and remove from heat.
  4. Add the chopped nuts and beat until the mixture begins to thicken.
  5. When cool enough to hold its shape, drop teaspoon by teaspoon onto a greased board or any clean non-stick surface and place a pecan half on each before it sets.
  6. The mixture sets very quickly so you may want to enroll some help with the placing of the nut halves.

The original recipe text:

Stir the sugar and cream over the fire until the sugar is melted, then let boil to the soft ball degree, or to 236° F. Add the chocolate, melted or shaved fine, and beat it in, then pour the mixture onto the cup of sugar cooked to caramel; let the mixture boil up once, then remove from the fire; add the nut meats and beat until the mass begins to thicken. When cold enough to hold its shape drop onto an oil cloth or marble, a teaspoonful in a place, and at once set a half nut meat on each. Two persons are needed to make these pralines, one to drop the mixture, the other to decorate with the halves of the nuts. The mixture becomes smooth and firm almost instantly.

Enjoy!

Linda x

Parsley Pie

Although parsley has been used as a garnish for many years, it’s now being recognized as a valuable food.

High in iron and vitamin C, parsley is a nutritious and inexpensive food – especially if you grow it yourself.

Parsley pie, a traditional Cornish recipe, especially good for using up leftovers.

  1. Preheat oven to Gas Mark 4 (350F, 180C)
  2. Lightly grease an ovenproof dish and almost fill with chopped fresh parsley.
  3. Mix in cooked lamb or any other meat or vegetarian substitute (chopped or minced)
  4. Add a couple of chopped hard boiled eggs and any chopped veggies you may have lurking in the fridge!
  5. Season and pour stock over the whole lot. Stock could be meat, chicken, ham or vegetable.
  6. Cover with a pastry top and bake in the pre-heated oven for about half an hour.

NB: If you use meat, always make sure it’s piping hot right through before serving.

Grow your own parsley so you have a constant supply of this wonderful herb.

How to Grow Parsley at Home

Bon Appetit!

Linda x

Broad Bean Recipes

Broad Beans, also known as Fava beans are so good for you, you should eat them with everything! They are high in fibre and have around 25grams of protein per 100g. They’re also rich in B vitamins and iron among other goodies.

Steam until tender and serve as a green veg or leave to cool and stir into any salad bowl.

And try out these easy recipes…

BROAD BEAN SALAD

Ingredients

Broad Beans
1 finely chopped red pepper
1 finely chopped or grated onion or shallot

Dressing
6 tablespoons of nut or olive oil
2 tablespoons of cider vinegar
2 tablespoons of chopped herbs

Method

Steam or boil broad beans until tender but not too soft
Drain and allow to cool
Mix red pepper, onion and herbs together
Stir into broad beans and serve.

BROAD BEAN PASTA SALAD

Ingredients

6oz/ 175g/ 2 cups of pasta shells
4-6oz/ 100-175g/ 1 cup of broad beans
1 bunch of watercress, chopped
1 small carrot, grated
Preferred salad dressing

Method

Cook pasta until tender but not too soft
Drain, rinse in cold water, drain again and leave to cool completely
Steam or boil broad beans until tender, drain and allow to cool
Mix all ingredients; pasta, beans, carrot and watercress together in a large bowl
Add salad dressing and serve.

BROAD BEAN SOUP

Ingredients

1 medium sized potato, peeled and diced
1 onion, finely chopped
A little oil or butter
Vegetable or chicken stock
Broad beans
Seasoning (pepper, herbs etc;)

Method

Heat oil or butter in a large heavy based pan and gently fry diced potato and chopped onion until soft.
Keep on a low heat and stir to prevent burning
Add stock and as many beans as the pan will hold!
Bring to the boil. Then reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes until beans are soft
Season to taste with a little black pepper, herbs or both

*For non-vegetarians, add a little chopped, cooked bacon in the last 5 minutes of cooking time.

BROAD BEAN PATE
*If you like coriander (cilantro) you’ll love this one!

Ingredients

2lbs/ 900g/ 5 cups of shelled broad beans
2 teaspoons ground coriander (cilantro)
2 teaspoons ground parsley
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
About 4 tablespoons of olive oil

Method

Cook beans until tender, drain and reserve liquid
Blend beans and herbs in a blender
Add garlic
Thin the mixture with a little of the reserved liquid to make a thick puree
Slowly stir in the oil until the required thickness of pate is reached
Taste and stir in extra seasoning if needed.
Serve on toast or crackers

Bon Appetit!

Linda x

Banana Seed Cakes

Although my gluten, sugar and dairy free banana loaf seems to have become a regular family favourite, I’m getting bored now! If you’re not bored with it yet, There’s an infographic on this page – tip: screenshot it on your phone.

Although, if dairy isn’t an issue for you, there’s another version here. Every time I make this, I seem to have different mixes 🙂

This Banana Seed Cake Recipe looks quick and easy although sunflower seeds aren’t always available so I’m going to try it without seeds as soon as the bananas don’t get eaten again 🙂

Found in ‘Grow Your Own Pharmacy’ (out of print now)

Banana Seed Cakes

Ingredients

2 small-medium very ripe bananas
6oz./150g./1.5 cups of self-raising flour*
3oz./75g./0.3 cup of sugar
3oz./75g./6 tablespoons of butter
5-6oz./125-150g./1 cup of sunflower seed kernels

*if using plain flour add 1-2 teaspoons of baking powder

you also need 3 bowls but they’re easy to wash up!

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350F, 180C or Gas mark 4
  2. In a bowl, mash peeled bananas
  3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and beat in the sugar and bananas
  4. In another bowl, mix the flour, sunflower seeds and baking powder, if using, together.
    *If you’re using self raising flour and not including seeds, skip this step.
  5. Fold the flour (mixture) into the banana mix and stir together well.
  6. Put tablespoons of dough on an ungreased baking sheet leaving about 5cm/2ins between them
  7. Bake in the pre-heated oven for around 15 minutes or when they are just starting to brown.

Let me know how you get on with this. I haven’t tried it yet. People keep eating the bananas!

Enjoy

Linda x

Banana and Chocolate Pancakes

Oh my, if bananas and chocolate don’t satisfy that sweet tooth, nothing will!

This is one of those recipes that get personalized the more you make them. If you’re gluten intolerant but can’t get pancakes to work with gluten free flour, maybe try an alternative such as almond flour – I haven’t tried this so don’t quote me on it! And the different types of chocolate you could use are plentiful 🙂

Banana and Chocolate Pancakes

Pancake Mix:

4oz. (100g) flour
Approx. 8fl.oz (200mls) milk
1-2 eggs (depending on size)
A little cooking oil

Filling:

1-2 bananas
2oz. (50g) dark chocolate (keeping it healthy!)
1 tablespoon honey

Method:

To make pancakes:

  1. Sift flour into a bowl and make a well in the centre
  2. Break an egg into the well and add a little milk.
  3. Mix well, adding more milk gradually and mixing until all milk has been used and you have a fairly thick batter mix.*
  4. Heat oil in a frying pan and pour in a little batter and cook for a minute or two.
  5. Turn over – or flip if you can! – and cook gently on the other side for a minute or two.
  6. Serve warm
  • some pancake makers like to chill the batter for half an hour or so before cooking. Not sure why, but when I remember to do this, the pancakes are often more ‘pancake’ like!

To Make Filling:

  1. Gently warm honey and chocolate in a pan to melt.
  2. Slice bananas and add to the pan.
  3. Cook gently for a minute or two then spread over cooked pancake.
  4. Eat immediately!

Enjoy!

Linda x

Mediterranean Potatoes

When I lived in France, I experimented with veggie recipes and this is one that my kids loved and therefore they ate it quite often!

I included it in the free potato book (pdf) here if you’d like to download it or just copy the recipe below and give it a go. Super tasty and nutritious…

Mediterranean Potatoes

Ingredients

3 or 4 medium potatoes, scrubbed or peeled and diced
1 courgette (zucchini)
1 green pepper
1 medium onion
A handful of fresh chopped herbs (maybe a teaspoon-ish of dried herbs if no fresh available?)
The juice of 1 lemon
A little olive or nut oil

Method

  1. Boil or steam potatoes until just cooked. Drain well and set aside.
  2. While potatoes are cooking, slice the pepper into strips or cut into chunks, chop the onion and slice the courgette.
  3. Gently sauté the pepper, onion and courgette in the oil in a large pan until vegetables are soft.
  4. Stir in the cooked drained potatoes carefully, add the lemon juice and herbs.
  5. Stir gently over a low heat for a minute or two and serve immediately.

NB: Use up any odd bits of vegetables you have lurking in the fridge; e.g. a tomato or a few small broccoli or cauliflower florets.

Bon Appetit!

Linda x