Friday, March 27, 2009


This is a favourite of mine - I have known the dish for many years, but not by this name. It is supposedly a welsh dish, but the Irish lay claim to one variant and the famous Lancashire Hotpot is yet another. The name 'Lobscouse' became familiar to me after reading Patrick O'Brian's superb Aubrey/Maturin seafaring series (on which the movie "Master and Commander" was based). Originally from the Norwegian 'Lapskaus', the welsh adopted both the dish and the name with only slight changes.

Yes, its a stew, and just in time for winter. My version is not exactly traditional, but it is tasty, filling and warming. Can be consumed with wine, mead or ale.

  • 300 g Carrots, chopped
  • 300 g Lamb or beef (or both!), sliced
  • 300 g Potatoes, diced
  • 300 g Pumpkin, diced (it will thicken the lobscouse)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 cup of green peas – to be added at the end
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa
  • 200ml dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • Pepper to season
  • Salt to season


Dice the onion and add it with the oil to brown lightly in a deep heavy based pot - a big Le Creuset is ideal if you have one.

Add the meat along with the chopped garlic and brown until the first touch of caramelisation can be seen. Season with salt and pepper and add the white wine and tomato paste.

Stir until it thickens and add 3 cups of water and the chopped pumpkin. Sprinkle the cocoa over the top then cover and leave on a low heat for 30 minutes stirring occasionally and adding water to maintain the volume.

Add the potato and carrot and allow to simmer covered for a further 30 minutes - again, check every 10 minutes or so, taste and add seasoning as required.

When the meat pulls apart easily the lobscouse is ready - add the peas and simmer a further 5 minutes.

No comments: