Thursday, 25 April 2013

My first ever roast chicken, and... a chamber pot?!

Today I cooked my first ever roast chicken! I decided to use wartime recipes to go with it, including a rather delicious parsley and celery stuffing. I also used some beetroot leaves from the allotment, which we had with some purple sprouting, and some potato/carrot/swede mash. For pudding we had freshly picked and cooked rhubarb and.. (drum roll, please) rabbit blancmange!
I had a nose around the charity shops today and my heart nearly stopped when I saw the object of my desire for the past few years - a chamber pot! As I want to re-make a late '30s-'40s house, I've been on the lookout for all sorts of odd pieces that I could use, and a chamber pot would've been pretty important!
Relaxed for a little while in our allotment.

In case you can't quite read the miniscule writing, here is the recipe. It is from a Ministry of Food pamphlet:
4 oz chopped celery
2 large onions finely chopped
4 level tablespoons parsley
4 oz stale breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper
2 level teaspoons mixed herbs
1 oz melted dripping
Hot water to mix
Mix all ingredients together adding sufficient hot water to give a soft consistency. Use for stuffing meat and poultry.

fresh herbs!
It's best to use stale bread for this recipe. You can blend it into breadcrumbs, or use your fingers. I did mine with my mincer, which worked pretty well.
Not the most prettiest of things, but it tasted delicious!

Blancmange is one of my favourite puddings to make, and I was given a beautiful rabbit blancmange mould for my birthday this year, so it was time to try it out. This is the recipe I use:
2 cups milk
1/3-1/2 cup cornflour
1/3 cup sugar
1-2 drops pink food colouring (optional)
a few drops of almond or vanilla essence to flavour
First, mix a little of the milk with the sugar and cornflour, and put aside once it is a smooth paste. Next, put the rest of the milk into a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring with a whisk. Add the cornflour mixture, food colouring, and flavouring, and keep whisking until it forms a gloopy substance (don't know how else to describe this!). Keep on the heat for 8-10 minutes and then pour into a damp mould. Leave in the fridge or somewhere cool for a minimum of 1 hour until the mixture is set. 
My beautiful blancmange mould!

The blancmange mixture before going in the fridge to cool.
We usually have our blancmange with tinned peaches, but as we had some rhubarb in the allotment we cooked this with a little sugar and a splash of water and had it instead.

The cooked rhubarb
The finished blancmange!

Jess xx

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