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English "Scouse"

What's the big idea?

Being a major sea port, Liverpool has over the years been visited by sailors and seafarers from all over the world. In the 18th and 19th centuries visitors from Scandinavia were particularly numerous, and they brought with them a recipe called "lapskaus", a one pot meal of lamb or mutton, potatoes and vegetables. The name was shortened and anglicised to "scouse" by the locals. The dish Scouse is still popular today in local pubs, and of course the term has now become a slang name for anything or anyone from the Liverpool area.

Serve with preserved beetroot or red cabbage, and white bread with butter.

Shopping List

Here's the list of what you need:

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 12oz diced braising steak
  • 12oz diced lamb (neck of lamb is traditional)
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 2lb potatoes, peeled
  • 1 pint beef stock
  • 2lb carrots, parsnips or swede, or a combination
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce* - to taste
*The Worcestershire sauce is not a traditional ingredient, but many modern versions of the scouse recipe include it.

What To Do

  • Preheat the oven to 160C / 320F / Gas 4
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Brown the meat. Add the onions and fry for a further 5 minutes
  • Transfer to a large oven-proof casserole
  • Cut the potatoes into 1cm thick slices, and arrange on top of the meat. Pour in the stock. Cover and cook in the oven for 90 minutes
  • Stir the scouse to break up the sliced potatoes
  • Mix in the root vegetables and thyme, cover and cook for a further 60-90 minutes, or until the meat is very tender
  • Season with salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce (if using)

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