This is a recipe that is as old as the hills. Necessity being the mother of invention and all. In the old days wash day took up a considerable time and effort on the lady of the household's part.
It could take hours and hours . . . with the water needing boiling in the copper . . . boiling and stirring the clothes . . . beating and rinsing . . . pushing them all through the mangle, etc. There was little time for much else on wash day . . .
Hence Wash Day Dinner . . . and there are probably as many versions of this as there are homes . . . and families.
Basically an oven bake which involved layering vegetables, grains and meats into a casserole dish, covering with a liquid of some sort and then baking until everything is tender and flavourful.
Essentially a hot pot . . . but without the lamb! And a tad bit fancier. It left a wife and mother's hands free to do all that she needed to do on the day without having to worry about tending to supper.
A few crusty rolls and dinner is complete. It may not be that pretty, but what it may be lacking in looks, this simple dish more than makes up for in flavour! (You could add a layer of thinly sliced cabbage too if you wish. Today I added a layer of sliced chard. Scrummy yummy and oh so colourful. You can also scale it up or down according to your need. It's delicious!)
*Wash Day Dinner*
Easy to make, painless and so delicious.
3 medium potatoes, thinly sliced (peel or not as you wish)
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced into rings
3 medium carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 small handfuls of uncooked rice (or a rice,spelt and barley mix Nom Nom!)
2 mugs of frozen peas
1 pound of good quality pork sausages (you want a nice and spicy one)
1 tin of tomato soup
240ml of boiling water
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp summer savoury
Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter a deep casserole dish.
Layer the ingredients into the dish in the order given, beginning with potatoes and ending with sausages, and seasoning each layer lightly as you go. Whisk together the tomato soup, water and summer savoury and additional seasoning if desired. Pour this mixture over top of all. Cover and place into the oven. Bake for 2 hours, until all the vegetables are tender. If you like you can remove the lid for the last 15 minutes of cooking time to lightly brown the sausage.
Spoon out onto hot dinner plates to serve.
Over in The Cottage today, some delicious Oatmeal Raisin Cookies!