Vivienne Bate – A Childhood Recipe

I contribute this recipe in the full knowledge that not many people will like it, but I was born in 1932 and it is a dish from my childhood which I still enjoy today.   I only eat it when I am by myself, on a wintry evening, sitting by the fire spooning it up, accompanied by nice thick brown bread buttered so thickly I can see my teeth marks.  Truly comfort food.  It is easily digested and it is cheap.


This is to serve one and the quantities are not critical:


A pack of tripe (available from Morrisons at Hunslet, also there’s a tripe stall in Leeds Market)

A nice big onion or 2 or 3 small ones


Salt and Pepper

A rounded dessertspoon of cornflour (or flour but I find cornflour easier as it doesn’t go lumpy)

Milk  – and cream if you wish.

A sprinkle of dried tarragon (optional)


Cut the tripe into 4cm squares, put it in a medium saucepan and just cover it with water. Bring to the boil, then turn it down to simmer

Cut the onions into fairy big chunks and add them to the saucepan.

Simmer for about half an hour until the onions are tender

Mix the cornflour to a smooth paste with a little milk in a jug.   Add some of the tripe liquor, give it a good stir, then slowly add it to the saucepan, stirring all the while.  

Add salt and pepper to taste, and a little tarragon if using.

You can add a slurp of double cream if you like.


The result should be quite runny – like a thick soup.  


Try it – you just might enjoy it.


Vivienne Bate

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