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British Night: Toad in the Hole

I knew it was going to be a good night at Cooking Club when my friend Darren brought me a steaming cup of Peppermint Hot Chocolate before dinner. What a scrumptious way to warm up before our feasting began!

I was too sick to make it to my British Night birthday dinner last week, but my lovely friends did a repeat for me and it was marvelous.

While the others cooked and bustled in the kitchen, I served up a few nibbles to tide us over: dilled green beans, Kalamata olives, and artichoke hearts.

Cameron unwrapped the cheesecloth-bound, salt-cured pork he made and sliced it into delectable little morsels of salty goodness. It went perfectly with Don’s mild Swiss cheese slices and glasses of red wine.

Soon the British portion of our feast was piping hot and ready to be eaten. We dug into Cameron’s herbed mashed potatoes…

…Robin’s peppery mashed turnips…

…Jen’s Toad-in-the-Hole, and drenched everything in beef gravy. Mmm, comfort food at its finest.

We ended the meal with a bowl of roasted chestnuts which we peeled and devoured as we visited happily around the dining table. It was a fabulous birthday dinner.

What is comfort food to you?

I’m delighted to have a new article up at The Travel Belles today! Click here to see pictures and read about a boat ride around a Croatian island. I’d love to hear what you think!

This is my contribution to Wanderfood Wednesday at Wanderlust and Lipstick.

Jen’s Toad in the Hole – click here for the recipe.

Robin’s Mashed Turnips


turnips, peeled and diced
salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place turnips in pot and cover with water. Bring to boil and simmer until tender. Drain.
  2. Add butter, milk, salt and lots of pepper. Mix until smooth.

Cameron’s Salt-Cured Pork Loin


salt (several cups)
pork loin, cut into 2-3 inch strips


  1. Add salt to water and stir until dissolved. Keep adding until it won’t dissolve anymore.
  2. Add meat to salt water and make sure it’s covered. Let sit 24 hours.
  3. Remove meat from water and pat dry. Dip in cognac, salt, wrap tightly in cheesecloth, and hang in cool, dry place for 3-5 weeks. (Can also be smoked lightly before wrapping in cheesecloth)
  4. Unwrap, slice thinly and serve.
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Chaya - Robin’s mashed turnips should be prohibited from being shown. I could stare at them for hours. They are more healthy than potatoes, I would think even with the gravy. Sigh. I want some.

bellini - Comfort food for me is still a piping hot bowl of macaroni and cheese. Now that I have Beechers recipe it is my ultimate comfort food…all I need is the Beechers cheese, although I am sure I could substitute.

Nancie - Everything looks and sounds amazing. Thanks for the recipes.


Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella - When I saw the picture of the toad in the hole with the gravy I thought to myself “Mmmm comfort food”! 😛

Ayngelina - Have to say I do not like turnips, even when I add bacon to them. The rest looks delicious.

el - Amazing. I especially love the mashed potatoes. Comfort food? I’d have to say grilled cheese sandwiches.

Anna Johnston - Ohhh, haven’t had a toad in the hole since visiting the UK…. (funny about that huh). Just popped on over to the Travel Belles… awesome. Lovin’ the pics of Croatia.

wandering educators - oh, yum – i love ALL of these foods in your super scrumptious dinner. happy birthday!

Andi - I couldn’t move past the pic of the peppermint hot choco LOL. YUM!!! What an awesome meal. Popcorn is comfort food to me.

ielra - I am quite tempted to make mashed turnips. Sounds pretty delightful Krista !

Sarah, Maison Cupcake - I love toad in the hole and I don’t cook it often enough. Definitely something I would like for dinner in this cold weather.

Breanne - Love the British theme, all that sounds like wonderful comfort to me.

I loved reading your comment, Krista, on my post. It made my day and was such a boost! =) Thank-you. You are incredible.

Tweets that mention British Night: Toad in the Hole » Rambling Tart -- Topsy.com - […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by The Travel Belles, Krista Bjorn. Krista Bjorn said: British Night: Toad in the Hole http://bit.ly/eeltks #food […]

Nicole - Peppermint hot chocolate could easily comfort me! I love the British theme to your birthday dinner. And how fun to share a dish called Toad in the Hole. Happy birthday, Krista! 🙂

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