Tuesday, February 16, 2010

E.A.T World - English Crumpets, Lancashire Hotpot, and Bakewell Tarts!

WARNING: The following blog post will be narrated in an extremely bad posh English accent.

Greetings from the land of Jane Austen! Yes! My fifth E.A.T World entry takes place in Jolly Old England, and I have really been looking forward to this one! Let's dive right in and have some tea and crumpets! How could we not?

E.A.T World: England - Crumpets

So my crumpets aren't round. They are rectangular. Call them crumpet pop-tarts. Or crump-tarts! I used this recipe from Planet Veggie (with whole wheat pastry flour instead of all purpose). I tried preparing the skillet three ways: once with cooking spray, once with a little canola oil, and a couple of times with Earth Balance buttery spread. The Earth Balance version was by far the best. The first time I ate crumpets I thought they were the spongy work of the devil! But that was my own fault because I didn't make the batter soft enough, now crumpets and I are BFFs. Crumpetty tip: The batter should be just barely thicker than pancake batter.

Not in the mood for tea or spongy stuff? May I interest you in a Lancashire Hotpot instead?

E.A.T World: England -  Lancashire Hotpot (with lentils)
Don't ask me what's going on with the neon potatoes here. I don't know!

Traditionally, the Lancashire Hotpot is a baked stew made with lamb or mutton, potatoes, carrots, turnips, onions or leeks, and covered with thinly sliced potatoes. Mmmm mutton. Not! The hotpot sounded great, but I needed to get rid of the meat. First I tried this recipe that calls for barley instead of meat and it was very tasty. Then I tried this recipe that calls for beans or lentils instead of meat and it was delicious too. Now I make my own version using whatever I have in the fridge and the pantry, and I always make them with lentils. Lancashire Hotpots are great for using up straggler veggies that need to be eaten ASAP.

E.A.T World: England - Lancashire Hotpot (with lentils)

For dessert? Bakewell Tarts! I made two mini tarts for our wedding anniversary, and they were deeeeelicious! According to the interwebs, the Bakewell Tart was named after the town of Bakewell (duh!) in Derbyshire, when an air-headed cook at the White Horse Inn accidentally messed up a recipe for a jam tart in 1820. It was one of those fortunate mistakes. After such lucky buffoonery the Bakewell Tart became a very popular dessert at the inn. I think the dude was just winging it! :)

E.A.T World: England - Bakewell Tart

There is a Bakewell Tart and a Bakewell Pudding, I am still a little confused about that but I am 99% sure that the one I made is the tart. Honestly, I don't really care too much, as long as I get to eat them you can call them Fred if you want.

From Wikipedia: "The tart version consists of a shortcrust pastry shell, spread with jam and covered with a sponge-like filling enriched with ground almonds (known as frangipane). They may also be covered with nuts such as almonds and peanuts. Alternative flavours, including blackcurrant, strawberry and apple are also produced."

For the crust I used the same shortbread crust recipe that I use for all my sweet tarts and pies, and you can find it here. The fruit filling is blueberry jam (1/4 cup per mini tart) which was very tasty, but next time I will make a chocolate ganache filling instead, just for kicks. The best part of the tart was the frangipane topping. Oh. My. Tart! I had never made frangipane before and I had no idea what it was, but Shellyfish came to the rescue with this awesome blog post and frangipane recipe! I only needed half of Shelly's recipe for two small tarts. Raise your hand if you miss Shellyfish! *overwhelming number of hands raised*

E.A.T World: England - Bakewell Tart


Bakewell, Home of The Tart :)
Photo via Wikipedia

You know what else is in Derbyshire? Pemberley! Mr. Darcy's home! Well, not really. Pemberley and Mr. D. were a product of Jane Austen's imagination, but Mr. Darcy's digs are believed to have been based on Chatsworth House in Derbyshire. Chatsworth House was even used as Pemberley for the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice. Here she is:


Whoa!
Photo via Wikipedia

Well, even though there is still so much to see and taste here, it's time to leave England and move on to my next destination. I found some new E.A.T World participants through google reader and a google search, but please do let me know if you're participating because I don't want to miss out on any fabulous world cuisine! This challenge has been so much fun, and it has shown me that I have been sheltered and narrow-minded, and stuck eating the same foods and using the same cooking methods for years. So many new ingredients! So many new cooking techniques! So little time!

Check out a few impressive entries from some fellow E.A.T World'ers:

DJ's awesome Chinese food post will give your salivary glands a good workout. Mini pink rabbit buns, anyone?

Krys' made some rockin' Jamaican food that will have you wishing you could lick your computer screen and taste it (don't forget your sunscreen lotion!)

Mike has really been to the Czech Republic and he's treating us to some delicious goodies! Drinks are on Mike!

Cassie hit three spots in one imaginary trip! Brazil, Bolivia and Botswana! That is some serious E.A.T World butt kicking! Awesome!

Stef has become a sauerkraut convert only after her first E.A.T World entry! Score! Her trip begins in Germany.

Sophia hit Thailand, Pakistan, China, and Portugal, all in one post! So much goodness in harmonious perfection!

See you next time, it may be time for another crafty post!

27 comments :

  1. If you don't have time to visit all the lakes country, I suppose you'll have to be content with Derbyshire. :-)
    Love the cumpets and of course love Pemberly, er I mean Chatsworth.

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  2. that hotpot looks tasty! I like how the lentils version sounds too.

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  3. It all looks great, but I am definitely making that hotpot! And the bakewell tart--oh, my. "You can call it Fred"--you are totally hilarious, River! ;)

    PS Question for you: what country would you like to visit that you haven't been to yet?

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  4. Hee hee! I couldn't help but think of your 'Mary Poppins' voice/accent while I read this post (which you know I love! I dare not let you hear my dreadful American accent!).

    I love E.A.T World, and wondering where you might be going next ~ "It's like International Grab-Bag Night at Al's. It's food and a game all in one!" (Lorelai Gilmore).

    Your post today is very familiar territory for me, having lived very near to 'Pemberley' for a while. I can't drive through Bakewell without saying 'home of the tart!' *Chortles*

    Rectangular crumpets? That's just not cricket! LOL! I haven't had a Bakewell Tart in donkey's years, but yours looks so good I'm seriously craving one now!

    I hope you will visit for real some day and check out Chatsworth and Jane A's house in person :)

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  5. Nice crumpets! (snigger snigger)
    I don't know why I've not tried to make my own......And I'm lucky to have had Bakewell tart in Bakewell - twasn't vegan though. Yours looks wonderful.
    *raises hand*
    I miss shellyfish toooooooooo.

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  6. Aw, I miss Shellyfish too!! And her mom! Man, whatever happened to her. It makes me so sad when when bloggers stop blogging...like losing a friend. Thought I'd lost you til I discovered your crafty alter-ego. :-)

    This food (and your photos) look amazing! Just simply divine. I must make crumpets, as I've never had them. I clicked through to the recipe, but noticed it's all European in measurements (guess I should expect that with a crumpet recipe!). But I'm not sure how much 4 ounces of flour is? How'd you convert it?

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  7. I LOVVVVVVVVVVVVVE crumpets!! They are especially good with a tonne of soy margarine and golden syrup on!! Do you know something horrifying, some people eat them with marmite!! There are some sick people out there!!

    Your bakewell tart looks awesome too, I haven't had that since before I was veg. Must have a go at making.

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  8. Jenn - *sigh* I guess Derbyshire will have to do for now... oh the hardships! :D

    Lisa - I am obsessed with the Lancashire Hotpot! The lentils version is the best, for sure.

    Ricki - I hope you enjoy the hotpot as much as I do, I can't get enough of it! Doesn't Fred look yummy? :P
    Thanks for the question! Oddly enough, it would probably be England! It would be great to take some sort of Jane Austen tour and "stalk" her properly.

    Becks - Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! You made me want to watch the International Grab-Bag Night at Al's episode! Rebellious rectangular crumpets! Can crumpets be badass and rebellious or are they too fancy for that? I'm ready for my Jane Austen's House visit... to bad I ain't gettin' on no plane! :D

    Jeni - Oh stop! You must tell everyone that! :D
    Let's all pester Shelly and convince her to come back! :)

    Bianca - Thank you! Yes, you must make crumpets! I didn't really convert anything, I let my super duper kitchen scale do the conversions for me, because I'm lazy like that. We should start a "We Want Shellyfish Back" petition! :)

    Sal - Marmite? Noooooo! The tarts were super easy to make and I think I made them in just under an hour! Score!

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  9. Thanks for the trip to England! Most of the English accents in my head belong to members of Monty Python, so I had fun reading this :)

    Everything looks fabulous, as usual! Love the crumpets and the Bakewell tart, or just possibly pudding, and the Lancashire hotpot looks like something I would really enjoy, even with the neon potatoes. Bakewell looks like a beautiful place, as does "Pemberley" :)

    Thanks for the all the EAT world links, too! I'll check them all out. Now I need to finally read some Jane Austen, and when I do I'll be sure to have tea and those crumpets. Cheerio!

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  10. That bakewell tart is calling my name! Ha, I always thought it had something to do with baking well and not with a town, duh.

    P.S I might eat crumpets with marmite :)

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  11. Tarts, and hotpots, and crumpets... oh my! Would you believe I have never had any of them?? PaTHETic!!!

    Luckily I have the day off today -- I think I need to make me a hotpot.

    hehehe, Becks! I love the GG reference. I miss that show sooooo much! Almost as much as I miss Shellyfish's posts. :(

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  12. Wow. Everything looks amazing. You are a great cook. I am drooling.

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  13. Oh my goodness River, you've made me hungry again! The hotpot looks amazing (who am I to pass up on veggies and sauce and potatoes?!) and a crumpet just sounds divine. Let's bring back afternoon tea!

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  14. The Lancashire Hotpot looks perfect for winter. I've never had a crumpet, but I love that you made yours with whole wheat pastry flour. I have to try to make these soon!

    I also I agree with Bianca...I was so happy to find your new blog, and I miss Shellyfish too!

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  15. Mike - I hope the accents in your head are better than the ones in mine! The Lancashire Hotpot has become a favorite comfort food for me, it has everything I want in a winter dish. Even neon potatoes! I hope you enjoy Jane Austen! :)

    Mihl - I had no idea what "Bakewell" meant either! Crumpets with marmite? It's OK, I won't tell Sal! :)

    Lisa - I hope you had the chance to make yourself a hotpot. It's not pathetic! I had never had crumpets, Bakewell tarts or hotpots either until recently, but I'm glad I found them! :)

    Krys - Thank you! The crumpets are kind of spongy, so if you do drool, you can just wipe it off with a crumpet! :P

    Jes - You just can't pass on veggies and sauce and potatoes! Let's bring back afternoon tea indeed... will you bring the bread, oh Bread Queen? :D

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  16. Vegan Snorkler - The hotpot is ideal for winter! The best! Yep, I'm not a fan of white flour. Thank you, I'm glad you found my new blog too! Now let's bring Shellyfish back! :)

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  17. I want some of everything please! I haven't had crumpets or a Bakewell tart in years and I have never had Lancashire HotPot. I think I will visit England too!

    I have joined in your E.A.T World challenge, I visited the Caribbean :D

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  18. Welcome aboard Mandee! YAY!! I'm checking out your first E.A.T World post now...

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  19. I love crumpets! now you've given me no excuse but to make my own. thanks for letting me know about the recipe. mmmmm... crumpets!

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  20. You're welcome! I'm glad I made them again after that first failed time because now I'm a big fan of them. :)

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  21. I've never had a crumpet before! I need to give them a try, they look tasty. :)

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  22. I'm going to have to agree, Jess... you do need to give them a try! They are best toasted because they get all crispy on the outside and stay soft inside. I'm making myself hungry just telling you about them! :)

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  23. Oh! And I meant to say: I love the Jane Austin commentary ;)

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  24. Oh man, I don't think I've had crumpets since I visited Australia 5 years ago. Now that I've made English muffins I'll have to give these a go! Everything looks so tasty, especially the tart - blueberry or chocolate filling, sounds wonderful! Thanks for the shout-out, by the way :)

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  25. You're welcome, and thank YOU for participating and rocking this challenge! How lucky that you got to visit Australia! There are some awesome food bloggers from there! :)

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  26. Gauri Radha गौरी राधाJanuary 1, 2011 at 3:34 PM

    The crumpets and tart look lovely!!

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  27. Gauri Radha गौरी राधाMay 7, 2011 at 1:28 AM

    Vegan crumpets and neon potatoes--sounds terrific to me :D

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