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Lancashire Hotpot

Lancashire Hotpot

This is the way to do Lancashire Hotpot in the Manchester style: (It’s all in the assembly of the dish)

You need a large casserole dish with lid.

Some diced RAW Lamb, Leg or Neck would do, but not too fatty.

Plenty of Large onions

Plenty of Potato; any main crop

Lots of salt

lots of pepper

Some stock;  if for four people then a pint at most

Preparation

Cut the onion into rings (very important)

Slice the potato thinly (about 5cm or so thick) so that you end up with them the shape of thick crisps (very important).  No chunks like the Irish do.

Grease the bottom of the dish

Put a layer of potato.

Then a layer of onions,

Then some meat.

Salt and pepper over it all.

Then another layer of potato,

Then a layer of onion and some meat.

Salt and pepper it all again.

Repeat until the dish is full.

Finish off with a layer of potato, salt and pepper.

Pour the stock in.

Cooking

Put the lid on and put it in the middle of a hot oven (180C, 360F)

Turn the heat down to 140C, 280F and cook for at least three hours.

Take the lid off, turn the heat up to 160C, 320F and leave for half an hour so that the potato on top goes a bit brown and crispy.

Remember, for the authentic Manchester experience;  plenty of pepper, no herbs, no carrots or other healthy vegetables adulterating the dish. No ‘sealing’ of the meat called for.  You could serve a green vegetable like broccoli, but Manchester people do not go for such things.

When you eat it the onions provide lots of liquid and will flavour the potato and gravy, the meat should be very tender.  There should not be too much gravy and it should not be thickened with anything like corn flour.

The crispy potato on top is good.

It is a very simple, nutritious and tasty dish, easy to prepare and makes a nonsense of fancy messed about cooking.