Hip, hip, hurray! it’s National Tea Day (Sunday 21st April 2019)
Darlings, now before I proceed any further, I must admit, I haven’t foggiest idea how or why this recipe commenced its culinary journey as a “saucer cake” – so, if you possess an inkling of a clue please do let me know!
Okey dokey, in celebration of this totally “tea-tastic” day, may I present Mrs Beeton’s Rose & Lime Saucer Cake – How spiffing. Yes, that’s right darlings, this bloomin’ marvellous floral creation oozes the delightful fragrance of an English country garden, well, in this case the delicate aroma of pink dainty roses that grow in a wreath-like fashion, tightly gripped around the grand stone entrance of one of those quaint countryside abodes – a picture postcard image, springs to mind!
Miss Windsor bids you a rather spiffing "carrot-licious" International Carrot Day – Thursday 4th April 2019.
Also, I may be a trifle quick off the mark, but I wish to dedicate this recipe in memory of the brave men, including my darling grandpa Larry (Royal Marine Commando) who on the 6th June 1944 participated in the D-Day Landings, thus finally freed Great Britain from the clutches of Nazi Germany.
You see, in celebration of this incredibly carrot-licious day, and to commemorate (in advance) the 75th anniversary of the D-Day Landings, may I present this truly scrumptious, Victorian, British, suet pudding recipe – Mrs Beeton’s Spicy Suet Carrot Pudding, which was first published in the 1861 edition of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management. Oh, and by the way, I added the "spicy" twist to this subtly sweet yet wholesome pud!
I say, darlings, now you’re probably wondering, “What the heck have carrots got to do with the D-Day Landings, Miss Windsor?” I hear you shrill with immense intrigue! Well, there’s no direct connection, but suffice to say, the courageous and healthful carrot also played an important role in winning the war, hence their culinary contribution helped to save the British people from starvation.
Eat cake, sip champagne, and be merry!
Come and join the revelry, as I crank up the volume to "Happy Birthday" by America's very own soul/pop/R&B/funk/jazz sensation - the one and only Stevie Wonder! One, two, three - now altogether, “Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday” – Oh, what a classic!
“So, what’s all the fuss about?” I hear you squawk? Well, obviously it's Miss Windsor's birthday today and to mark such a joyous occasion, one has recreated an age-old recipe from one's trusty, 1906 edition of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management – with a bit of a Miss Windsor twist, of course!
Happy British Pie Week!
I say, my dear fellows, in the spirit of British Pie Week Miss Windsor’s been having an absolute blast reviving age-old recipes from the past! Therefore, regarding the next item on the menu, and just in the nick of time before this wonderful week comes to an end, one wished to "Spitfire" back to the British wartime days and recreate something frightfully healthful and wholesome – a dish Grandmother Josie would’ve certainly approved of!
May I present the rather delectable and exceedingly homely Miss Windsor's Wartime Meatless Farmhouse Pie - How splendid! You see, I stumbled upon two terribly toothsome and similar pie recipes in my copy of Recipes of the 1940’s by Irene Veal. Therefore, my version is a fusion of both, just minus the meat! Oh, and darlings, evidently, you’ll soon discover that the operative word for British Pie Week in the Miss Windsor household is VEAL!
Happy British Pie Week!
By Jove! Miss Windsor has certainly surpassed herself today! You see, in the spirit of British Pie Week, and my passionate quest in "Bringing food history alive," I recreated Mrs Beeton’s Veal & Ham Pie. And so, I excitedly announce with oodles of glee that it turned out to be an absolute culinary triumph – How spiffing!
Oh, and I must mention, that I stumbled upon Mrs Beeton’s Veal & Ham Pie recipe in my 1906 edition of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management – first published in 1861, whilst searching for something frightfully unusual, yet awfully hearty and traditional which one could recreate for British Pie Week!
Darlings, now you’re forbidden to turn your nose up to this glorious dish, which I must admit, is of an acquired taste, yet delightfully delicious (believe me, I was extremely surprised by how mouth-watering tasty this recipe turned out to be!) British, suet crust, meat-based pie created with an unusual concoction of ingredients such as sliced veal fillet or cushion, chunky bacon bits, hard-boiled eggs, a sprinkling of seasoning, followed by a "gill" (translation: 140ml or 5 US fl oz.) of beef stock – and nothing more!
Simple, more-ish and comforting, you can’t get much more homely than this traditional British pudding that travelled over to America with the Pilgrim Fathers (or Forefathers, as they were first known). Originally from Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire the pilgrims set sail for America in 1620 hoping to recreate their favourite foods when they got there.
As it turned out, the pudding needed a bit of a makeover: wheat flour was scarce so early settlers used cornmeal or ‘Indian corn’ instead and topped it off with a splash of newly discovered maple syrup.
Hasty pudding, sometimes known as Indian pudding is now regarded as an American classic whereas the English version has inexplicably fallen out of favour.
It’s is well worth a revival: try both, equally delicious, versions and see what you think.
Miss Windsor excitedly presents Mrs Beeton’s Hasty Pudding (Nutmeg & Vanilla Tapioca Pudding).
Okey dokey, Miss Windsor has no time for "dilly dallying", so without further ado I’m going to get straight to the point – chop, chop! about this subtly sweet yet rather wholesome member of the British milk pudding family.
You see, as far as I know, hasty pudding or more commonly known as tapioca pudding has been a staple of our beloved sweet course since the 1800’s – well, a lot less so in today’s modern world, but suffice to say it’s certainly making a glorious comeback!
Oh, and I must quickly mention that I’m "chomping at the bit" as I excitedly present this recipe as my first offering to "At Home With Mrs Simkins & Miss Windsor" – our new collaboration which opens with an all guns blazing HASTE-OFF, hence HASTY PUDDING – comprende?
Warm up your "cockles"- Oh, I say! with Mrs Beeton’s Cold Winter Soup - Victorian cuisine at its finest! Created with a jolly good dousing of Thatcher's Oak Aged Vintage Cider - the very best of Somerset fayre!
My dears, you maybe already know, that in 1861 during the reign of our sovereign - Queen Victoria (curtsey please!) Mrs Isabella Beeton’s most treasured creation – Beeton’s Book of Household Management was first published. And as nature intended, she flourished into the worlds-greatest teacher of all things "domestic and culinary" – Oh, what an inspiration! And luckily for Miss Windsor, she just so happens to own a copy of the 1906 edition which evidently was bestowed the new title of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management – How spiffing!
Moving swiftly on, whilst scouring through my glorious 1906 edition, there I discovered Mrs Beeton’s ONE and ONLY recipe to be of her very own creation – Benevolent Soup, which was originally known as Useful Soup for Benevolent Purposes.
May I present the ultimate sexy treat - Miss Windsor's Chocolate LOVE Truffles!
These chocolatey and rather boozy little balls of deliciousness are full of passion, and enriched with a heavenly dose of LOVE, of course! Oh yes, plus a drop or two of the world-famous Harvey's Bristol Cream Sherry, or if that doesn't tickle your fancy why not indulge in a saucy nip of Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur - Ooh la la!
Happy Yorkshire Pudding Day! (3rd Feb 2019)
In the spirit of this most wonderful day, I wished to recreate a family sized Yorkshire pudding; not the individual type that we’re all so familiar with – How spiffing!
Therefore, I just so happened to find the ideal recipe in my 1903 edition of Mrs Beeton’s One Shilling Cookery Book, which originally belonged to my great great grandmother Georgina.
Oh, and by the way, Mrs Beeton’s recipe makes two puds, so you may scoff one with your Sunday dinner of roast beef and gravy, and freeze the other for a rainy day!
Happy New Year!
I’m thrilled to present my great great Grandma Georgina’s Cold Winter Pudding!
So, darlings, it’s time to fasten your apron strings, pull up your sleeves, grab ya mixing bowl and wooden spoon, and join Miss Windsor for a gay ol’ time down memory lane where together we’ll recreate a delicious slice of food history!
I say this frightfully British suet pud will certainly raise one’s body temperature during those rather inclement days or evenings – How spiffing! And I dare say, if you’re a fan of bread pudding, although this recipe contains no bread at all, I’m sure you’ll fall head over heels with Grandma Georgina’s creation!
Oh, and I must admit Grandma's original recipe lacked a bit of winter flair! So, I "jazzed" it up a tad with the addition of mixed spice, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and lemon/orange zest – How inventive, Miss Windsor!
patate di agnello in fuga,patate di agnello fuggito, patate di agnello vagante
Welcome back to Mrs Simkins and Miss Windsor’s Italian Escapades.
I had planned to bring you pasta carbonara for my second recipe, based on the gorgeous one we had in that lovely restaurant in Venice earlier this year (see intro). We were only there for 3 days and I never got the chance to order my own but the forkfuls I blatantly stole from my husband’s plate were absolutely wonderful.
Anyway, as I was saying to Miss Windsor the other day, I shall have to put that on hold as our hens, now sadly depleted from 5 to 4, have gone off lay for a while and we are lucky if we get one or two eggs a day. A series of family birthdays and other events has meant eggs have been whipped away from under the hens for cakes almost as soon as they are laid.
Fancy something a tad sweet, rather creamy, extremely boozy, laced with coffee, rich and velvety, a touch spicy, intensely Italian, a teensy nutty, with a brush of British (namely Bristol City) – NOW BREATH! - then Miss Windsor’s Festive Sherry & Spice Tiramisu is the perfect dessert for you – How spiffing!
Of course, if you haven’t a clue what I’m going on about, I simply created this recipe with Amaretto Morbido (translation: Italian soft almond macaroons) or one may use the customary ingredient of ladyfingers (Savoiardi) dipped in booze enriched with espresso coffee and layered with a mascarpone cheese mouse like filling.
I'm thrilled to present Miss Windsor's Quick & Easy Victorian Boiled Fruitcake - a delightful addition to your afternoon tea pageantry of goodies; or a rather toothsome, time-saving alternative to the traditional Christmas cake.
Oh, and I'm proud to say that my version is 'loosely' based on my beloved grandmother Josie's recipe. You see, ever since she sadly waltzed through the Pearly Gates in 2013, I've tirelessly strived to resurrect her scrumptious culinary creation. I say, but Grandmother Josie is quite a hard act to follow, plus she left no written record of her recipe.
Miss Windsor excitedly presents Mrs Beeton’s Traditional British Christmas Pudding recipe - a frightfully fruity, remarkably rich, temptingly moist, and abundantly boozy classic festive dessert, which I discovered buried deep within my culinary bible - my 1906 edition of Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management - page 939, to be exact - How spiffing!
And I must say, what thrill it was, although rather laborious, to step back in time to the late 1800's and recreate an age-old recipe following traditional methods. And so, with a whole day set aside, and with my great great grandmother Georgina in mind, I wished to experience the joys of a Victorian 19th-century cook, slogging away in the kitchen as one prepares for the Christmas Day feast - well, so far, just the Christmas pudding!
Okey dokey - let’s crack on and make some pumpkin puree from scratch! Perfect for pumpkin pie or as a tasty, seasonal, healthful alternative to our beloved starch ladened mashed potato!
I say, if you're keen on creating the latter, then Miss Windsor recommends to ‘jazz’ it up with a dollop of butter, followed by a sprinkling of sea salt and cracked black pepper – Oh, how spiffing!
I excitedly present Fannie Merritt Farmer’s good old-fashioned American pumpkin pie!
You see, I discovered this frightfully fabulous and easy recipe in my 1909 edition of The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book - How Spiffing!
Yet rather interestingly, the origins of pumpkin pie tumble all the way back to the 1500’s, where Medieval cooks served stewed pumpkin, sweetened with sugar, livened up with spice, and enwreathed with pastry – I say, mouth-drooling scrumptious!
Also, there are many early recorded recipes of pumpkin pie, one of which has a French connection - Ooh la la! - Tourte of Pompion - created by Francois Pierre La Varenne in 1653. Then of course, as the years zoomed by, during 1796 a recipe for pumpkin pie appeared in the first known American cookbook by Amelia Simmons, which is very similar to Fannie’s version, although it requires scalded milk, eight eggs, and one may add grated lemon-peel instead of spices.
I say, troops! – stand to attention, grab your spade, grow your own fruit and vegetables, Dig for Victory, and Eat for Victory – By Jove! chaps, now that’s the wartime spirit!
Oh, how exciting darlings, Miss Windsor’s back again with yet another seasonal, allotment inspired, palate-pleasing culinary treat, based on a rather spiffing wartime recipe from my Eating for Victory cookery book.
So please give a warm welcome to something a trifle different, frightfully British, and exceedingly healthful – Miss Windsor’s Beetroot & Green Bean Fritters!
Two Tiramisu for You
Miss Windsor and I love tiramisu and have both noticed how actual Italian tiramisu in Italy isn’t terribly alcoholic, if at all.
We decided we’d bring you our own special versions, mine based on my Venice one and Miss Windsor’s made with one of her favourite tipples, Harvey’s Bristol Cream, which I think is an inspired British alternative to the customary Italian marsala or vin santo.
We love them both equally gorgeous and we hope you will too.
Miss Windsor’s Italian Inspired Cherry Tomato Pasta is just the tonic for the hungry-hearted – Mamma mia!
You see, my vegetarian recipe is splendidly quick and easy to recreate – using the very best of Whimsical Winnie’s harvest. Namely, her titillating good (Oh, I say!) allotment grown tomatoes from her plot at Fulham Palace Meadows (London). I say, Winnie’s such a dear heart for donating her little red balls of goodness to my ‘Eatalian’ culinary cause!
Miss Windsor and I have come to the end of our summer garden party collaboration, and hope you’ve very much enjoyed it as much as we have. We’re taking a bit of a break now but will be back before too long with a special quartet of recipes inspired by our respective Italian travels earlier in the year.
Until then, we leave you with Miss Windsor’s sparking summer beverages: a fabulous fizzy lemonade which she also uses to make a gorgeous summery cocktail with Pimm’s number 6 cup, a special edition one with elderflower and blackberry. It sounds so nice I can’t wait to try it. I really must get out more as I’d never even heard of this Pimm’s until Miss Windsor told me about it!
And, finally, from me a classic Victoria sponge. Every garden party needs a nice simple Victoria sponge so here you are; complete with tips and a brief cake history.
(You may be wondering why our garden party has suddenly morphed into a bit of a Teddy Bear's Picnic as well, but all will become clear as you read on.)
I excitedly present Miss Windsor’s Blackberry & Elderberry Breakfast Muffins – based on an original Fannie Merritt Farmer recipe. Therefore, these simple, subtlety sweet, and rather healthful bundles of fruitiness – are created with very little sugar; and naturally sweetened by British foraged fruits.
Oh, and funnily enough, one mustn’t forget to add that these rather toothsome darlings feel remarkably soft – just like a stroke of an alpaca’s furry mane – Ok, I admit that’s a slight exaggeration, but I’m sure you catch my drift!
Mini quiches are always a great savoury favourite for parties and picnics and a must for garden parties. Add some cooked diced bacon or lardons if you prefer but the simple cheese and onion flavour is delicious and also suitable for non-meat eaters.
Easy to make and assemble: particularly if you whiz up your pastry in the food processor and make an all in one filling rather than faffing about adding cheese and onions and what have you separately, plus, unlike full size quiches, you don’t have to bake the pastry cases blind first either.
Please join Miss Windsor for a jolly good go at recreating this refreshingly zingy beverage of Mrs Beeton’s Quick-Fire Fizz Lemonade - it's ‘easy peasy lemon squeezy’!
Oh, and it’s just what the doctor ordered to reduce one’s body temperature whilst enduring such an unusual spell of sweltering hot weather. And I dare say, it’s definitely a one-off for Great Britain that’s notoriously known for its mediocre summers – My word, wonders never cease!
Anyone for tennis? Oh, dearie me, last shout for The Championships Wimbledon was on Sunday 15th of July. But not to worry, Miss Windsor’s here to console you with a sup or two of her frightfully fruity Pimm’s cocktail - which is just the tonic to soothe one’s post-tennis blues. Or why not join Mrs Simkins (my culinary collaborator) and I for a jolly good quaff of the good stuff at our summer garden party!
So, move over Mr Original Gin Sling, and make way for Miss Windsor’s intensely vibrant vodka-based tipple – toot sweet! which oozes a luxurious touch of Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur.
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