Scouse has been around for many, many years and is a popular dish throughout Liverpool. Countless locals in Liverpool will have their own version of the traditional dish which has been passed from generation to generation.
Since its popularity took off in the 18th century, Souse has become the name used to describe the local people, collectively and individually. It is also the name of the accent used to describe the way people in Liverpool talk.
Global Scouse Day is celebrated on the 28th February and see’s Liverpool natives celebrate their culture and food no matter where they are in the world. A number of pubs and restaurants in the city will be celebrating Global Scouse Day by putting the tradition dish back on the menu but there are a few who have the much-loved stew on their menu each and every day.
Origins of Scouse
Going back to the 18th and 19th century, Liverpool was a major shipping port where numerous cultures would meet. As well as many seamen settling in the city, others were simply there to berth as they waited for their return trip home.
Scouse derives from the name lobscouse which was the stew sailors used to make during their docking in Liverpool.
A majority of these seamen were Scandinavian and during the chilly nights, the visiting Norwegian seamen would cook up their local dish of Lapskaus to keep them warm and provide them with all the goodness they needed after a long day.
Originally, 19th-century sailors made lobscouse by boiling salted meat such as beef, lamb or mutton and slow cooking them with onions, peppers and carrots with ship’s biscuit’s to thicken the dish. The hearty meal was so popular the local seamen took the recipe home for their wives to make.
‘Pan of Scouse’ quickly became a common dish for the working class people of Liverpool and after becoming so popular in the city, the locals and their accents were named after the dish.
Modern Day Scouse
Scouse is still a widely used dish in many Liverpool homes and is a staple dish in numerous pubs, cafes and restaurants in the city.
The dish hasn’t changed that much from the original with lamb or beef being the meat of choice and vegetables including carrots, onion, potatoes accompanied by beef stock and Worcestershire sauce but some families have their own recipes which include adding rice, turnips, beer and red wine to name a few.
Scouse nowadays is served with warm crusty bread, beetroot and cabbage making it the perfect dish to warm the whole family on a cold winters evening.
For vegetarian’s who are wanting to try a taste of Scouse, you can get a meat free variation called Blind Scouse.
Scouse in Liverpool
Last week we ran a poll of the best Scouse served in Liverpool and here are the results;
The Ship and Mitre are famous for its Scouse dish with is loved by non-other than the Hairy Bikers themselves. The dish is served in the traditional way with beetroot and crusty bread making it a firm favourite in our poll. Each and every Wednesday The Ship and Mitre have “Scouse on the House” where punters can get a free taste of the homemade dish but it doesn’t last long so ensure you get there at 6 pm.
The Baltic Fleet is another strong contender for serving up a delicious homemade Scouse. The pub which is located on Wapping claims it was ‘probably’ the first to import the recipe and serve Scouse stew to the Norwegian sailors. The Baltic Fleet makes a stunning homemade Scouse dish accompanied again by beetroot and crusty bread and butter.
Located on Heathfield St just off of Bold Street lies the gem which is Bretta & Co. you can only get their homemade Scouse during lunch hours which are 12-6pm but you won’t be disappointed. Their Scouse consists of locally sourced beef, carrots and onions slow cooked in a rich broth served on a sour dough bread & wild beetroot.
The Elephant Pub & Bakehouse takes you out of the city centre and lands you in Woolton village. The traditional pub which was taken over by Simon Rimmer in 2014 creates their very own, modern take on the traditional dish in the form of Scouse Pie, which consists of slow cooked lamb & vegetables served with a puff pastry lid and spicy pickled beetroot.
Maggie May’s original Scouse is famous in this great city. not only does Maggie have a café on Bold Street she also supplies the local community with her delicious dish being stocked in Tesco and other retailers in microwavable pouches. Maggie has three future variations of the dish which include Blind Scouse, Pea Wack Soup and Wet Nellie Desert.
Global Scouse Day
A number of local Liverpool business are taking part in the Global Scouse day festivities where Maggie May will be hosting the main attraction. They are asking the public to get involved and if you think you’ve got the best Scouse then email Maggie May on firstname.lastname@example.org for your chance to take part and have your scouse judged by a celebrity panel with great prizes.
Business’s taking part include London Carriage Works, Liverpool Yacht Club, Lauras Little Bakery, Ego restaurant, Lunya and Side door bistro.