Horse’s doovers

From The Better Hostess Series: Hors d’Oeuvres & Appetizers, 1978

Emboldened by the success of the salmon mousse (well, it looked right even if it tasted like crap) we decided to tackle a mixed appetisers plate with not one but three tasty morsels – hopefully raising the odds of finding something edible.

The plate included stuffed mushrooms, stuffed artichoke hearts and pastry carrot boats. We hit our first flaw in the plan when we realised we had no pastry, carrots or boats.  But not to worry! We found a recipe for scotch eggs which would make a handy substitute.

Here’s the book it all came from:


Making the scotch eggs was pretty easy; we  just wrapped boiled eggs in sausage meat and deep fried them. As you can see, they were as surprised as we  were to find that they tasted quite nice.


Surprised scotch eggs

If you look closely you can see the bits of slightly uncooked sausage meat near the centre, but I’m pretty sure that somewhere in the world they eat raw sausage meat so we just covered that up with mayonnaise and pretended it was supposed to be like that.

By now we were pretty confident that we had this retro food thing nailed, so moved on to the mushrooms. Here we hit our second stumbling block.  The picture of the final result showed mushrooms stuffed with a green paste, but there was no way we could work out how to combine the ingredients (cream, lumpfish caviar, lemon juice)  so that they were green.  We blended, whipped and mashed, but the best we could manage was grey wobbly stuff with black blobs.

Shrugging it off, we moved on – baking the artichokes and whipping up cheese sauce for the stuffing.  At this point the recipe called for some serious crafts. We spent hours painstakingly cutting bits of tomato with pinking shears, making funny shaped croutons and slightly obscene little mushrooms out of boiled eggs.  We attacked this with gusto:


Perhaps going a little bit too far:


We braced ourselves, poured a Singapore Sling (well, beer) and dug in.  Here’s the verdict:

Emma: This was awful. They were all awful. 1 out of 5 Sloe Gin Fizzes.

Sarah: You could sell this as a weight loss diet because so far pretty much everything is inedible.  The mushrooms were cooked in port and you can almost taste the mushroom and the cream filling curdling in your mouth while you eat it.  The artichokes were also surprisingly revolting given that the individual ingredients were ok. 2 out of 5 Sloe Gin Fizzes (and they were both for the scotch eggs)

Alister: I think you missed the arti because they just made me choke. At least the scotch eggs finally got the taste of the mushrooms out of my mouth.  1 out of 5 Sloe Gin Fizzes.

Anthony: Civilisation as we know it would not have survived if they ate like this. 1 out of 5 Sloe Gin Fizzes (and that’s for effort)

2 thoughts on “Horse’s doovers

  1. I’m surprised to see scotch eggs on a retro food blog – they’re readily available in shops and widely consumed round here (Scotland, admittedly). When made with good-quality meat, they can be very tasty. I expect being partially-cooked doesn’t help them, though…

  2. Mar03 Sloe gin’s one of my favourites too but I haven’t had it for years. My mum used to make loads of the stuff on our big old khectin table, then a couple of months later she’d start testing the bottles. It longer she left it, the better it got. Elderberry wine and elderflower champagne (because it’s quick) were other hederow favourites one of the bonuses of living in the countryside I suppose.

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