Real vegetarian food, served in an imaginary world...

Wednesday 17 October 2018

Fantasy Veggie Dinner Guest - D H LAWRENCE

David Herbert Lawrence, one of England's greatest novelists, was born just a few miles from Zelda's present location, in Eastwood.

She loves to visit the little terraced house of his birth which is now a museum. 

Here she is outside it with her friend, Julia.

Eastwood  is (unnecessarily) dominated by businesses which capitalise on Lawrence's reputation such as The Lady Chatterley pub where Dave enjoyed a pint.

Sons and Lovers has always been Zelda's favourite of all his novels; she loved it even before she could walk up Castle Boulevard in Nottingham or see the remains of the mining headstocks at Brinsley.

Zelda would like to prepare him a meal, taking as her inspiration - and hopefully improving - one mentioned in Sons and Lovers
Miriam was moving about preparing dinner. Paul watched everything that happened. His face was pale and thin, but his eyes were quick and bright with life as ever. He watched the strange, almost rhapsodic way in which the girl moved about, carrying a great stew-jar to the oven, or looking in the saucepan. The atmosphere was different from that of his own home, where everything seemed so ordinary.
"I'm ready for mine," said the young man, taking up the newspaper and reading. Presently the rest of the family trooped in. Dinner was served. The meal went rather brutally. The over-gentleness and apologetic tone of the mother brought out all the brutality of manners in the sons. Edgar tasted the potatoes, moved his mouth quickly like a rabbit, looked indignantly at his mother, and said,
"These potatoes are burnt, mother."
Here is a recipe for a lovely stew, taught, step by step, to Zelda by her Mum, Sandra.  Just make sure you don't burn the potatoes! 


Ingredients  (Vary quantities to suit the number of people to be served. This makes enough for 4 to 6)
For the stew:
2 large carrots 
1/2 large swede
5 medium potatoes
2 leeks 
salt and pepper 
about 1pt stock made with 6 vegetable Oxo cubes
For the dumplings:
250g self raising flour
125g vegetable suet
2tsp salt

First prepare the vegetables:
Peel and chop the carrots and swede.
Wash and slice the leeks.
Place all in a large saucepan.
Make up the stock and pour over the vegetables. You may need to add more water to keep them all covered, now or at any time during the cooking process. Season, bring to the boil and then simmer over a low heat.
Peel and half the potatoes, placing in a bowl of water until later.
Simmer for at least half an hour (and up to an hour if possible). Stir every now and again to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom. 
To prepare the dumplings:
Mix the flour, salt and suet together and then add enough water to bring it all together.
Shape into balls (You should have about 12)
Add the dumplings to the stew. 
Simmer for about 45 minutes. (The dumplings will also thicken the stew.)

25 minutes later, add the potatoes.

Simmer for 20 minutes. The stew will now be ready to serve. If you want, you can turn it off at this point and re-heat it later.

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