This is where I note my efforts as I try to recreate some old recipes. Most are taken from my small collection of handwritten recipe books which date from the late 1700's to around 1922. I also have a collection of old tatty old recipe books, well thumbed and heavily splashed from years of use. I love them all!

The old-fashioned very stylised handwriting writing is sometimes difficult to decipher, measurements and cooking instructions are minimal, no tin sizes given. Luckily I enjoy a challenge. Just to complicate things I cook and bake on my wood-fired Rayburn, which can be... unpredictable.

I suspect this blog is less about the food and more about my passion for these lovely old books and the wonderful women who wrote them.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Potato Pudding-Pie

Potato Pudding-Pie - sounds rather stodgy and dull, doesn't it?


  • 1 lb boiled potatoes
  • 6 oz butter
  • 6 oz sugar (I used 5 oz and it was sweet enough)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/4 of a nutmeg, grated
  • Brandy, to taste (I used a tablespoonful)
  • Pastry - (
  • I used shortcrust, because I had some spare, but the recipe calls for puff )


Mash the potatoes with the butter, beat well together.  (The mix will become unctuous and creamy.)
Add the sugar - and suddenly the mixture becomes much slacker.
Whisk the eggs well (I used my mixer) then beat them into the mixture adding the nutmeg and brandy as flavouring.

Line you dish with pastry.   The recipe simply calls for you to pour in the mixture and then bake it in a quick oven until it is set.

I decided to bake the pastry case for ten minutes before adding the mixture.   I baked mine for approx 30 minutes at and checked on the wobble.   (I suggest a heat of approx 180 C, but you know your own oven.)

This was the result.  A Pudding-Pie which cuts like an egg custard tart and tastes like an egg custard tart.    

It was superb!

I dressed it up a little for my afternoon tea guests.    

Yet again, no one guessed at the main ingredient.  They all thought it was a delicious egg custard and came back for second slices.

My bedtime reading has become old recipe books, the history of food in England,  English food in India (Culinary Jottings for Madras), etc.   

A few weeks ago it would have been mainly Scottish detective stories or biographies!

I am getting used to the minimal directions, the lack of large and glossy photographs.   I'm finding these little forays into old recipes as relaxing as I find cooking with my Rayburn.   No expectations or pressure, but if it works (and they all have, so far) then I am delighted.   So are my friends and family - my ever-hungry friends and family.

ps  This recipe was found in 'Good Things in England' by Florence White.

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