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Ploughman's Lunch and the Miser's Feast: Authentic Pub Food, Restaurant Fare, and Home Cooking from Small Towns, Big Cities, and Country Villages Across the British Isles Hardcover – February 28, 2012
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"My Halal Kitchen: Global Recipes, Cooking Tips, and Lifestyle Inspiration" by Yvonne Maffei
Explore this bestselling cookbook filled with more than 100 diverse, popular, international recipes made with halal foods or halal substitutes along with tips on how to source them. Learn more
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Dear Amazon readers,
I always love the underdog and British food has such a bad reputation that I couldn't help but be drawn to it. Soon it became my special culinary place--an unknown spot where nobody else went. I would have thought that the popularity of The Two Fat Ladies, Nigella Lawson, Jamie Oliver, and Gordon Ramsay would have done something--yet, the joy of a B&B breakfast, a Sunday pub lunch, a great curry, or a lavish tea service remains something of a cult secret.
So much of British food is a poor man's vision of a rich man's meal: breakfast with sausages AND bacon or a big Sunday lunch of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. And even more has always been and always will be a "poor man's meal:" fried bread, dumplings and mince, or bubble and squeak.
When you travel to Britain, nobody gives you any advance notice that there are foods worth eating outside of a few fine-dining temples, and on my first trips, everything seemed new. The surprises never stopped coming: sandwiches, artisan cheeses, cereals and beverages of the highest quality, and the obvious: these legendary gardeners grew more than flowers--this very green place is paradise for produce fans.
The United Kingdom is like a Chinese restaurant with a secret menu--learn what's good, find out what to order, and you'll be among the initiated. Let everybody else suffer with kabobs or frozen pizzas; we can go on a journey. I'll share a secret with you and take you along a gastronomic path that isn't anywhere as heavily traveled as it should be. You'll love it--I promise.
Brian YarvinSample Recipe from The Ploughman's Lunch and the Miser's Feast: Chicken and Leek Casserole
Makes 4 servings
Chicken and leeks seem to be an inspired combination, in Great Britain as elsewhere. Here we make that cousin to a chicken pie, a chicken casserole. You can also find the pair in a soup, Cock-A-Leekie.
1/4 cup chopped bacon
1 pound boneless chicken breast or thigh meat, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
2 cups chopped leeks, white parts only
1 cup chopped carrot
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup beer or ale
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Combine the bacon, chicken, leeks, carrot, salt, pepper, broth, and beer or ale in a Dutch oven or casserole and mix well so that the ingredients are evenly distributed.
Bake the casserole, covered, until the chicken is fully cooked, about 60 minutes.
Remove the cover, return the casserole to the oven, and bake until about 1/3 of the liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes more.
Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top and return the casserole to the oven. Bake, uncovered, until the breadcrumbs are nicely browned, about 30 minutes more. Serve warm.
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Top Customer Reviews
I am aware of the Ploughman's Lunch only because Husband spends a good amount of time in brew pubs and a variation of that dish can be found everywhere. Miser's Feast? What could it be? It is a dish of potatoes, onions, and british bacon or thinly sliced pork chops cooked long and slow. Like a scalloped potato without the cream, but with onions and pork. MMMM
The photo on the cover also comes from a long slow cook, Banoffee Pie. The base is made by baking sweetened condensed milk in a water bath for two hours. I have read old American recipes using this method to bake the milk right in the cans, but the Banoffee Pie is so much more.
The book contains lots of history about the region and it's food. There are enteries for people producing the good stuff locally, and every recipe begins with a bit about the dish. Sometimes it is explaining an odd name or unexpected ingredient.Read more ›
I must make the confession that when I lived in Britain. I loved pub food and especially ploughman's lunches and steak and kidney pies. This book has met my expectations; in fact looking through the recipes and pictures and explanations, such as those on an English breakfast could bring me to tears of enjoyable reminiscences. The pictures showing some of the countryside and pubs are well done and even though the pictures of food preparation are not quite ones that give directions, they give much help in the recipe preparation.
It might take a dyed in the wool Anglophile to long for Gentleman's Relish and scotch eggs, but to actually find decent recipes for them is amazing. There are about 100 recipes in this book, including; full breakfast, sandwiches, salads and small plates, soup, main course, curry, sides, savory pies and baked goods, sweets and recipes for what you might need such as, lemon curd and clotted cream. A measurement conversion chart is included (recipes are given in `American' measurements), there is a translation guide- a glossary that tells you what fish fingers, candy floss and baps are. The index can be a bit confusing. If you want to look up Steak and Kidney pie, it is not listed alphabetical but in with the pies.
This includes the best recipe and least confusing directions to make Yorkshire pudding I have seen; and of course we have enjoyed the steak and kidney pie, the scotch eggs, the pickled eggs, bubble and squeak and so many others in here.
This is a book for Anglophiles, cookbook collectors and those who would like to try some wholesome and different food, even if you haven't been lucky enough to find that pub that still makes these wonderful dishes.
The author, an American, makes arrogant claims of "rescuing" the traditional Scotch Egg and "I can do a lot better than that" of our time-honored and long-established baked beans. His chapter on the great British tradition of tea was created in consultation with an AMERICAN tea "expert". Overuse of the term "jargon", and "nothing more than", "just another word for" and "just" whilst comparing British fare to the lesser US version of the dishes litter the book.
His error in pronouncing GRILLED tomatoes as really being ROASTED exposes his level of understanding, or lack thereof, of the British culture... any British expat will tell you that BROILING is the US equivalent to GRILLING.
Arriving at page 33 I decided to search for the author's biography, curious as to his credentials to write such a book, and as expected found he really had none.
Comments such as "the British think of this dish as a classic rather than a relic" and his declaration that these dishes are "worth a try" and reference to the wonderful Beef Wellington as "today seems almost corny" sum up his attitude and beg the question WHY he wrote this book if he is so scornful of our cuisine!?
As for the recipes themselves... his claims of improving on tradition have discouraged me from actually trying any of them ... perhaps they are better than his presentation of them.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very disappointing. I had expected far better. As a fan of British cooking shows and having traveled in Great Britain, found this book's recipes not ones I'll cook. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Pat Goodwin
This should be titled: How hobbits really cook! So much of this British cooking is so surprisingly good! Read morePublished 7 months ago by Siobhan Mulligan
I haven't cooked any of the recipes from this book as of yet. When I do I will add to this review. That said, the recipes appear to be worth trying.Published 8 months ago by Brightpixie
Not really what I expected. Have not even made one recipe from this book. Better recipes available on line for free.Published 14 months ago by Uninspired
I very much enjoy this cookbook. The recipes, the lay out, the visuals all top notch. A great cookbook and also just a great book to read if you are not a chef :-)Published 14 months ago by P. Lyons
A wonderful little book I've only had it a few days but I've read it from electronic cover to electronic cover and cooked a couple of the recipes already. Tasty stuff.Published 14 months ago by Uncle John 5oh
This is the worst cookbook I have ever bought about Gt. Britian and the ploughman's lunch. Being Scottish I spent many a Saturday and Sunday having a ploughman's lunch at the... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Lesley Robertson