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Loads of events are held across Liverpool to pay tribute to scouse, the meat or veggie stew that is synonymous with the city.
Bars, cafes and restaurants in Liverpool – and around the world – put scouse on the menu for the day it’s also served in schools and hospitals!
In more recent years Global Scouse Day has grown to include music, art and cinema events across the city.
Global Scouse Day began with a “scouse supper” held by a group of friends every year on Liverpudlian adventurer Graham Hughes’ birthday. When he left the country in December 2008, Laura Worthington (of Laura’s Little Bakery fame) thought it would be fun to continue the tradition in his absence.
As time went by, it grew from a small gathering to an event that captured the city’s imagination, getting support not just from bars, restaurants and cafes, but from venues, the Lord Mayor of Liverpool – and Liverpool and Everton Football Clubs.
A fund-raiser too, it’s collected cash for R Charity, The Whitechapel Centre and Clatterbridge Cancer Centre so far.
Scouse is really easy to make, and it’s an adaptable dish that anybody can enjoy. There’s a traditional version with meat, and a veggie version called ‘blind scouse’ – and, even better, it’s 100% vegan and gluten-free!
2 large onions
500g* beef or lamb, cubed
Oxo stock cube
Serve with pickled beetroot or pickled red cabbage, and crusty bread
Laura says: “You can play with the quantities depending on how many hungry mouths you have to feed, just try to keep it at a ratio of around 1:1 for the meat and the potatoes and half that value for any other vegetables you want to throw in.”
Method: Peel the onions, potatoes and the carrots, and cut the carrots and onions into nice big chunks. Cut most of the potatoes into similar-sized chunks, but pick a few to slice very thinly so they’ll break down and thicken the gravy.
Dust the meat with flour. Get a big pot on the hob, add a drop of cooking oil and then add the onion and heat for a minute or so until soft. Then, add the meat, stir and heat for a few minutes until it’s sealed. Sprinkle in an Oxo (stock) cube or two, add the rest of veggies, and seasoning to taste.
Add enough water to cover the meat and vegetables. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and allow to simmer gently for around three hours, stirring occasionally and making sure there’s sufficient liquid. Don’t let the food stick to the bottom of the pot!
If you wish, add a dash of Worcestershire sauce for extra flavour.
2 large onions
250g sweet potatoes
“Again,” says Laura. “You can play with the quantities depending on how many you have to feed, just try to keep it at a ratio of around 1:1 for the swede and the potatoes and half that for any other vegetables you want to throw in.”
Wash your vegetables well – you’ll be using the skin. Peel the onions, potatoes, carrots, swede and sweet potatoes. Put the peel into a pan with around 500ml of water and boil vigorously for 15 mins (this will be your stock).
Cut the onions, carrots, swede and sweet potatoes up into nice big chunks, cut most of the potatoes into big chunks but slice a few thinly to break down and thicken the gravy.
Get a pot on the hob, add a drop of cooking oil and then the onion to heat for a minute or so until soft. Add the rest of the veggies.
Separate the boiled water from the peel using a sieve or colander, add that water to the pot. Season with salt and pepper as desired. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
This year GBS is supporting The Paper Cup Project, a Liverpool-based volunteer group which offers food, hot drinks and a listening ear to the homeless.
Anyone celebrating Global Scouse Day can support The Paper Cup Project by pledging a percentage of any proceeds made by selling scouse on the day, or directly via their GoFundMe page.
With such a variety of creative independent retailers and restaurants at the dock, there’s plenty of scope for different takes on the scouse theme.
This Global Scouse Day restaurants putting their own twist on scouse include Madre, who are serving a scouse taco with beef brisket, carrot salsa and pickled beetroot, Pie Port who are baking a scouse pie in honour of the day, and Smuggler’s Cove which has Mother Redcap’s signature scouse – a hearty lamb stew with a side of bread, pickled beetroot and brown sauce – on its menu.
Tate Liverpool, Merseyside Maritime Museum and Peaberry Coffee House are also joining in the celebration, and Lunyalita will be offering a Catalan scouse made with chorizo and morcilla.
The Nest will be hosting craft sessions from Friday to Sunday outside its shop where visitors can choose a Global Scouse Day recipe illustration to colour in and take home – plus there’ll be a gift voucher prize for one shared on social and chosen at random. They’ll also be partnering with social enterprise Alchemic Kitchen who’ll be making Liverpool-themed chutneys as the perfect side for any scouse.
Katherine Caldwell, who runs The Nest, has designed a new logo for this year’s event and says they’re looking forward to welcoming everyone to the dock.
“We wanted to get lots of restaurants at the dock involved this year because it’s about more than just a traditional bowl of scouse, it’s about pushing the boundaries of what scouse can be as well,” she says.
“Liverpool is such a multi-cultural city, what’s why it’s good to have other cultures getting involved and really exploring the possibilities – everyone can share their own heritage, so it isn’t just a bowl of stew, it’s something that connects us all.”
Food might be the star of the show, but there’s more to Global Scouse Day than just the stew, especially when Scouse Bird is in charge.
Steph is hosting a night of all things Scouse at the Palm House in Sefton Park on Friday, bringing together all the things we do best … music, food, and just having a laugh.
There’ll be bowls of scouse as well as drinks on sale, Scouse Bird will be firing off questions in a big Liverpool quiz (expect forfeits as well as prizes … you’ve been warned!) and there’ll be fabulous Liverpool music chosen by Global Scouse Day founder Graham Hughes.
It’s on from 7pm to midnight, for over-18s only, and the quiz starts at 8pm. Tickets are £5.50 inc. admin fee.
If it’s good enough for The Hairy Bikers who enjoyed a bowl of scouse at the famous freehouse, then it’s more than good enough for us. It serves a classic bowl with beef and lamb, served with pickled beetroot and a bread roll for £9, and it recommends it’s washed down with Belgian Dubbel or Flagship Ale. They also do a Mini Scouse without sides for £5.
Visit their website here.
Promising ‘homemade grub just like ya ma does’ head down for a vegan dish of blind scouse with potatoes, root veg and homemade seitan pieces, served with bread and sliced beetroot (£9).
Visit their website here.
Go the whole hog and enjoy The Scouse Experience for £12.50, starting with peawack soup with chunky bread, a big bowl of scouse – there’s a choice of mutton, chicken and blind scouse (vegan) – with red cabbage and beetroot, followed by wet Nelly pudding.
There’s ‘All You Can Eat’ scouse for £11.50, or a single bowl for £6.50.
You can even choose a pot of tea or a filter coffee which is included with each.
See their website here.
Sit in or takeaway, Mrs Danvers Café is doing three scouse options on Friday from 12-2.30pm – homemade scouse, suet scouse pie or blind scouse, all served with a chunk of tiger bread, beetroot or cabbage for £6.95, with £1 from each dish going to Macmillan Cancer Support.
See their Facebook page here.
Chef Dave Critchley is promising a hot and spicy Lu Ban-inspired Chinese scouse, aka Jiang beef, which is made with braised beef and packed with lots of spices including star anise, cinnamon and fennel seeds. It’ll cost about a tenner, there’ll be a blind version too, and Lu Ban will donate £5 for every customer who orders off the GSD menu on the day to the Big Help Project in Knowsley.
Visit their website here.
Bold Street Coffee will be serving up its hearty scouse special from Friday and then all weekend. £6.95 will get you a bowl of deliciously slow-cooked beef, with potatoes, carrots, turnip and onions, served with braised red cabbage and a warm bread roll.
Visit their website here.
Now in the lobby of C&F, Scandinavian specialists SKAUS obviously has a very decent authentic scouse on its small plates menu, served 12-6pm. Choose from 24-hour beef brisket scouse served with beets for £7 or a vegan blind scouse, also with beets, for £6.50.
More info here.
Maggie May’s uses beef in its scouse, but you’re guaranteed a nice big bowl with beetroot, red cabbage – or both – for the great price of £6.45.
Find out more here.
Its signature scouse dish, Mother Redcap’s Signature Scouse, is named after the Mother Redcap tavern that guarded the Mersey shore in the 18th century. Its owner, Poll Jones, protected smugglers’ treasure while they were out at sea. Here it’s a hearty lamb stew with a side of bread, pickled beetroot and brown sauce for £11.95.
Visit their website here.
Warm yourself up after a blustery walk on the front with a bowl of piping hot scouse, served with pickled red cabbage and a crusty roll.
Find out more here.
Try Ma’s Classic Scouse, at £7: with beef, potatoes, carrots, leeks and cabbage, served with fresh crusty bread and pickled red cabbage. (GF bread available on request)
Chef Dave will be making scouse, scouse pie and scouse calzone pizza with £1 from each dish going towards The Whitechapel Centre homeless charity.
Ooh if you fancy a pie – you can get a scouse pie! The thriving community-run business will of course be doing its famous scouse pies and blind scouse pies with its classic tasty crust.
Head to the Mathew Street eaterie opposite the Cavern Club for a hearty bowl of Scouse. For £12.95 you get slow-cooked prime beef with mixed vegetables and potatoes. It’s served with beetroot, pickled red cabbage and crusty bread.
The Bluecoat, School Lane
Great food in great surroundings, enjoy an arty afternoon and finish it off with homemade beef scouse, served with crusty bread and pickled cabbage for £6.95.
You can normally only get it on a Monday, but Albert’s is making an exception for Global Scouse day so head over on Friday too if you want scouse with a Bavarian twist – a labskaus beef stew, with potatoes, haus pickles and white bloomer bread, £9.95.
Ooh we’re loving the sound of this one! A beef scouse with carrots, celery, onions and a secret ingredient – that we’re now going to reveal – of oxtail to give a richer, deeper flavour. For £8 you also get braised red cabbage, and fresh homemade bread from Little’s Shoe’s own bakery with spring onion butter.
Etsu plans to have traditional scouse cooked by one of its local lads and a Japanese version by its Japanese Chef. The Japanese version is a traditional Japanese dish called Niku Jaga, which is very similar to scouse but is much sweeter.
It will be making appetiser size portions so customers can still order their normal Etsu favourites -and so that more people might try them! The cost is expected to be around £5.95 with the full amount being donated to Pancreatic Cancer UK, following the sad death of owner David Abe’s father Takuji from the disease last September.
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