The second of the three rabbits/rarebits that appear in English Food (the third being English of course). After the appearance of Welsh rabbit in the early eighteenth century, and its subsequent popularity, meant that it diversified. Griggers finds this recipe in Hannah Glasse’s 1747 book Art of Cookery. Scotch rabbit seems much easier (and cheaper, natch) as the only ingredients are cheese, toast and butter. The recipe is in fact just lifted directly out of her book, so that is what I’ll do:
‘Toast a piece of bread nicely on both sides, butter it, cut a slice of cheese about as big as the bread, toast it on both sides, and lay it on the bread.’
Easy? Let’s go through it again:
Toast a piece of bread nicely on both sides, butter it. Check.
…cut a slice of cheese about as big as the bread… Yep, good, done that.
…toast it on both sides… Say what now? How the hell are you meant to toast a piece of cheese on both sides!?
This is what I did: I cut the cut and laid it on a piece of buttered grease-proof paper in the hope it could grill it and turn it over. This was not the case as you can see by the photo!
#183 Scotch Rabbit (Rarebit) – 2/10. What a pathetic sight it was. The cheese just stuck to the paper and ended up a big mess. What I don’t understand is that normal good-old cheese on toast is better, tastier and above all easy to make. There is no wonder at all why the Scotch rabbit never took off.
3 thoughts on “#183 Scotch Rabbit/Rarebit (1749)”
Hi, I know it is an old post and since published you might have learned more on the subject but I though I’d leave a comment on the second toasting. I believe that the second toasting was done with a salamander or similar object that was heated in a hearth and hovered over different things to brown them (just like we do nowadays with ovens grilling or broiling setting). I think there are references in the 18th century cookbooks for that but I can’t cite any. My memory is often like a sieve, only being able to retain what I am researching at the moment. 🙂
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Ah yes the old salamander. I keep meaning to write a post on grilling now I know a lot more about the subject!