Tuesday 26 January 2016

Buttered Eggs - courtesy of Mrs. Charles Darwin (deceased)

creamy, buttery buttered eggs   

I love eggs; who doesn't?  Well vegans I guess.  I was just reading that you can use apple sauce instead of eggs in recipes.  Maybe not when you are scrambling them though :=)  I love brunch dishes too so when I got hold of Mrs. Charles Darwin's Recipe Book, I just couldn't go past this lovely little recipe for buttered eggs.  No worries about cholesterol in the Darwin household my friends.

So basically you take as many eggs as you want, add to cream and butter, and heat over a double boiler till you have a deliciously soft, creamy, luscious eggy delight which you pour over your buttered toast.  Yep, more butter.  Are you still worrying about cholesterol?

Serves 2 generously


5 eggs

for each egg - use 5g. of butter and 1 tbs of cream so I used 25g. butter and 5 tbs of cream

salt and pepper to taste

2 slices of toast per person


Whisk those lovely eggs till well mixed

Add the salt and pepper and whisk in

Grab a double boiler (or a bowl over a pan of simmering water)

Tip in the butter and cream

Heat very gently till the butter is melted and the mixture is bubbling sweetly round the edges

Pour in your whisked eggs and keep stirring till you have a lovely, smooth consistency - or if you really have to, till it gets well done and rubbery:=)

Spoon over the buttered toast and throw on a handful of chopped herbs if you have them

easy on the bank balance - just a few ingredients    

ready for action  

whisk the eggs

tip the eggs into the warmed butter and cream   

take it off the heat just before it starts to set too firmly  

very delectable  


Maybe 2 eggs per person is plenty!  They're very rich, and even Mr P. was getting full. 

You may need to take the bowl/pan off the simmering water every so often so the eggy mix doesn't get too hot.  Just take it off, let it cool while stirring then put back over the water.  Make sure not to let it get too rubbery; it will keep cooking once you lift it off the water

I really enjoyed flipping through Emma's recipes.  They would have had access to their own animals for meat, eggs and milk; thus we see instructions like - "cut up the pig's head and cut off ears, tongue and cheeks".  Her husband Charles (yes he of  'Origin of Species' fame) had a poor digestive system so the recipes had to be for wholesome, family food.  

Emma had a busy houseful of children and servants, so feeding them all well would have been quite a task.  I love her handwritten recipes throughout the book, and the botanical illustrations. Recipes come under headings such as Dairy, Fish, Meat, Puddings etc. There are also sections on Preserves and even a cold cream recipe - as in beauty cream made with spermaceti which is a fatty substance found in the head of a whale.  Mm, don't think I will try that one:=)

A really enjoyable read if you are at all interested in food history.  

Emma Darwin née Wedgwood
  (artist George Richmond-public domain)

     can't you guess?  it's a bowl of eggs!


  1. Love, love, love eggs. I never knew she had recipes printed! How bizarre. Big fan of her husband :)

  2. Me too. Eggs are so useful. She had a notebook of recipes which were edited by a couple of women recently and published.

  3. I didn't know much about her so thanks for enlightening me! :D And hehe I'm just imagining replacing the eggs in scrambled eggs with apple sauce ;)

    1. now that would be a laugh lorraine. apple scramble! eek.

  4. I enjoyed this post very much Sherry. Good to see Emma not hiding behind Charles' achievements. He's a bit of a thief actually, claiming ownership of the concept of evolution and natural selection for himself when there was a co-author, Alfred Wallace.

    1. thanks so much fiona. i had fun writing it. yes there was apparently a third fellow who came up with the theory of evolution before either Darwin or Wallace. can't remember his name tho. darwin won out cos he had the money and the contacts. it's all about who you know in this world:)


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