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, 3 February 2017

Celery Cheese

Among my collection of old recipe books I have lots of tatty and tattered printed booklets and pamphlets.        Most lack their covers which  makes it very difficult to identify or date them.    

This recipe came from one such book.  I have pages 15 to 82.   I suppose it is possible that someone else has the other pages, but much more likely that they were destroyed long ago.     It is printed on cheap and nasty paper, no illustrations, and yet I really like this old book which dates from somewhere around the the end of the 19th century.

The recipes are many and varied and I'll write some more up here in time.

I still haven't recovered my appetite a month after having 'flu, but this particular recipe caught my fancy, so I cooked a portion.      It doesn't look very pretty but it was really tasty.  

Celery Cheese
Take odd bits of celery and boil them in milk till tender.   Add some grated cheese, a pinch of salt (I omitted this) and thicken with a little flour.   Bring all to the boil and and serve on buttered toast.   A very tasty dish for supper.

There you have it!     I should have diced the celery instead of slicing it but I wanted to have a little texture to the dish.

I served it on a slice of home made bread, for I find that makes the best toast.   I didn't butter the bread, I simply let the juices and the melted cheese soak into it.   I would definitely make this for myself again although I would refine it a little next time.

My mother used to occasionally make something similar although her vegetable of choice was tinned tomatoes, that worked very well but looked even less attractive than this dish.

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I called in at Cowslip Cottage today to drop off a loaf of bread and to say 'Hello' to your boy, he's missing you,  Ming Ming,  but managed to rouse himself sufficiently to polish off a couple of treats, have a little grooming and a tickle as well as playing chase the feather duster.xxx


  1. Celery is sold here 'complete'; leaves-n-all. I often see people tearing a few leaves from the tops and secreting them amongst their shopping. People rarely seem to buy the whole Celery.

  2. Hello Cro, They don't know what they are missing! Celery, especially after the frost has been on it, is so good.