Welcome back to Miss Windsor’s Delectables! Once again, it’s a pleasure to receive your company – How spiffing!
I say, with just a pinch of time remaining before gooseberry season is well and truly over, I’ve managed to rustle up a scrumptious steamed suet pud – Miss Windsor’s Gooseberry & Redcurrant Suet Pudding. I created this with the simplest of ingredients: suet pastry, green gooseberries, redcurrants, and the ultimate sweet touch of a generous helping of sugar, which I must highlight is most needed due to the exceedingly tart nature of these fruits.
I based my culinary masterpiece on a Mrs Beeton recipe that was originally published in the 1861 first edition of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management. Evidently my dears, I recreated a frightfully Victorian slice of British, or some may prefer to say English, food history!
Food for thought: have you ever wondered about the origins of the illustrious dessert of gooseberry fool?
Well, maybe it was first served to King George III of England at a lavish dinner? Or could it be an invention of the overindulgent Victorians? Or just possibly, this dish first graced the likes of a medieval banqueting table? Indeed, a farrago of possibilities, which Miss Windsor investigated thoroughly and has endeavoured to describe her findings right here on this page.
Darlings, now I must express that I'm “tickled pink” (Oh, I say!) to present this vibrant and sweet, yet tart and creamy summertide dessert created with Grandmother Josie’s favourite summer fruits - Miss Windsor's Pink & Spicy Gooseberry Raspberry Fool – By Jove! that’s a bit of a mouthful.
I say, in keeping with the spirit of The Championships, Wimbledon, one hoped to stumble across a recipe with a tennis connection. Well, lo and behold whilst flicking through my 1906 edition of Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management, there I discovered a recipe for Tennis Cake!
And as you’ll soon discover, Miss Windsor’s spin on Mrs Beeton’s most decadent, moist and luxurious Tennis Cake boasts an appealing light texture and colour - bestrewn with a plenteous amount of chopped almonds and flavoured with a subtle zing of lemon.
Darlings, before we proceed any further, I shall indulge you with some quick-fire facts about The Championships, Wimbledon! Now, for those who are not in the know-how regarding the history of this world renown All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, it held it's first ever "men’s singles" tournament in 1877.
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.
Oh, and whilst searching for something frightfully unusual, yet awfully hearty and traditional which one could recreate for British Pie Week, thankfully, one 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.
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!
Warm up your "cockles"- Oh, I say! with Mrs Beeton’s Useful Soup for Benevolent Purposes - 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.
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!
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!
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!
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, the last hurrah of The Championships Wimbledon was on Sunday 15th of July 2018 (this year's season ended on the 14th July 2019). But not to worry my dears, as Miss Windsor’s here to console you with a sup or two of her frightfully fruity Pimm’s cocktail - 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- here's the LINK: Mrs Simkins & Miss Windsor’s Summer Garden Party!
So, move over Mr Original Gin Sling, and make way for Miss Windsor’s intensely vibrant vodka-based tipple, which oozes a luxurious touch of Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur.
Well, I say, hip hip hooray - ‘summertide’ is surely on its merry way! And upon its arrival, will offer a glorious, palate quenching cocktail, concocted using the very best Somerset produce, plus a smattering of Indian fizz – How spiffing!
So, if you’re caught in a ‘fuddle’ or just gagging for a tipple, then please do try my delectable summertime bounty - Miss Windsor’s recipe for Mr Miles Gin Berry Cocktail.
I say, fancy joining me for an nostalgic trip down memory lane, where you'll learn how to re-create one of my favourite, British, summertime or anytime desserts? Well, darlings, how could one resist a nibble on Miss Windsor's Blackberry & Apple Crumble - Oh, I say!
You'll be pleased to know that it's completely gluten-free and vegan - "OMG!" I hear you shriek with sheer utter delight! Oh, and it's so devilishly delicious that even the health-conscious community are rather baffled how I achieved such culinary excellence - despite the reputation that gluten-free food is notoriously bland!
Following an unfortunate spell of blustery showers and cool evenings, One finds it hard to believe that we’re slap-bang in the middle of British ‘summertide’! However, during those occasional sunny moments, I wish to nourish my palate with a slightly piquant, yet sweet dessert!
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