A traditional British recipe
Britain has many traditional dishes, and here at Roland’s Travels, I will share some of these with you. I hope you enjoy both the cooking and the eating! Look out for articles where I get to visit the places where they originate.
The Lancashire Hotpot is a stew, and there are no guesses from where it originates!
The county of Lancashire has an industrial heritage, and 200 years ago, the cotton mills prevailed. Before the big industrialisation of mills, many worked at home as families. Families had to eat what they could afford and use readily available ingredients.
There are many recipes for a Lancashire Hotpot, as cooks today like to put their own spin on the dish. What everyone agrees on is that the traditional dish consists of lamb or mutton, onion and topped with slice potatoes. Back in those days, the dish would have been slow-cooked in a heavy pot, so the family could tuck into a hearty warm meal when the working day was done.
One interesting fact you can use to test your friends with. Why is it called a hotpot? All is not what it seems to be! The term is most likely from a hotchpotch, a mixture of items, often random.
There is a recipe contained in the cookbook, “The Closet of the Eminently Learned Sir Kenelme Digbie Kt Opened”. Produced after this gentleman’s death in 1669, it contains a recipe called The Queen Mother’s Hotchpot of Mutton. Take a look, it’s fascinating to read.
Here is a Lancashire Hotpot recipe for you to try.
1kg Lamb, under shoulder, neck and shin
700 grams Onions, thinly sliced
1kg King Edward potatoes, peeled
25 grams of Plain flour
40 grams of Salted butter
150ml Chicken stock
3 teaspoons of Sea salt
The above quantities should feed four. Adjust the recipe accordingly.
Cooking Method (Cooking Time around 3 hours 15 min)
Season the lamb with 1 tsp of salt and a pinch of pepper, and sprinkle with the flour. Put the lamb into the base of the hotpot dish. I suggest a heavyweight pan, or you can use a casserole dish if not available.
On low heat, fry the onions until soft but not brown in 15 grams of butter with one tsp of salt for 4-5mins. Spread the onions evenly on the lamb in the dish.
Slice the potatoes horizontally, 2mm thick. Place in a bowl, and add the remaining melted butter from the onions. season with 1 tsp of salt and a pinch of pepper; mix well.
Put the sliced potatoes evenly on top of the onions and add the chicken stock.
Place the hotpot with the lid on in a preheated oven for 30 mins on 200°C/400°F/Gas 6, then reduce for 2½ hrs on 130°C/250°F/Gas ½. This is the slow-cooking part.
Remove from the oven, and take off the lid. It’s not ready yet! Now return to the oven on 200°C/400°F/Gas 6 for 30-40 mins or until golden brown.
Now enjoy the fruit of your labour!
Do you have a favourite British dish? Let me know in the comments below.
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