Chester Canal Heritage Trust


Canal Recipes

Lock Keeper's Casserole

  • 4-6 joints of rabbit
  • Seasoned flour
  • 2oz of butter
  • 2 medium onionschopped
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 medium apples, peeled, cored and thickly sliced
  • 8oz mushrooms sliced
  • 8 oz streaky bacon, de-rinded and cut in to 1 inch pieces
  • pint vegetable stock
  • 2 teaspoons tomato puree
  • Sprig of fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt & pepper

Heat half the butter in a large saucepan and cook the onions, carrots and apples for 5 minutes, stirring well. Remove from the pan and set aside. Coat the rabbit joints in seasoned flour. Heat the remaining butter in the pan and brown the rabbit joints on both sides. Lower the heat, add the mushrooms and bacon pieces and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Add the stock slowly and then ad the apple/vegetable mixture, the tomato puree and thyme, stirring all the time, and season. Bring to the boil, cover, lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour or until the rabbit is tender. Stir occasionally and add more stock or boiling water if required.

Serves 4-6.


Fried Eels

  • 2lbs eels
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Seasoned flour
  • 1oz butter

Wash and skin the eels and cut into chunks about 2 inches thick. Coat with beaten egg and dust with seasoned flour. Melt the butter in a large frying pan until it is really hot and sizzling. Fry the eels very gently, turning once just to seal them; it is important not to brown them or they will over cook. Then turn down the heat, cover the pan and continue cooking, until flesh is tender. As eels can be rather oily, fresh crusty bread goes well with this dish.

Serves 4.

Chicken & Leed Hobbler

  • 6 chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons wholemeal flour
  • 2 tablespoons porridge oats
  • 1 tablespoon of oil .
  • 2 medium onions,sliced
  • 2 medium leeks, chopped
  • 2 rashers streaky bacon, chopped
  • 6oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons of yeast extract
  • Salt & pepper

Set oven to 350F or Mark 4. Mix flour and oatmeal together in a large bowl and season well. Coat the chicken breasts evenly with this mixture. Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole dish and brown the breasts on both sides. Remove and set aside in the bowl of flour mixture. Re-heat the oil, adding a little extra if necessary, and cook the onions, leeks, bacon and mushrooms, covered, over a medium heat for 5 minutes stirring to prevent over browning. Replace the breasts with the remaining flour mixture, stir well, add the yeast extract and sufficient water to cover the chicken. Stir, bring to the boil, cover and cook in the oven for about 1 to 2 hours until chicken is tender. Alternatively, simmer on top of the stove for about 1 hours.

Serves 6

Wood Pigeon with Mushrooms

  • 4 woodpigeons, prepared
  • 2 oz butter
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 8 oz mushrooms, halved
  • 1 large cooking apple, peeled, cored and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons cranberry jelly
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pint chicken stock
  • 1 cup cider
  • 1 heaped dessertspoon Cornflour
  • Salt & pepper

Heat the butter and oil in a large, flameproof casserole dish and brown the birds all over. Remove and set aside. Lower the heat and fry the onions until lightly browned. Remove from the heat and add the mushrooms, apple slices, cranberry jelly and bay leaf and season well. Place the pigeons on the mixture and pour over the stock and cider. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 2-2 hours, stirring occasionally. When the pigeons are tender, remove and set aside. Drain off the liquid into a pan, remove the bay leaf and stir in the cornflour, already mixed with a little water. Bring to the boil, stirring until the liquid thickens. Return to the casserole with the pigeons; stir well and heat finally through gently.

Serves 4.

All recipes can be found in...

Compiled by Cass Best