Beef mayonnaise

I’m not sure that beef mayonnaise sounds very enticing for today’s foodies, but maybe it sounded exotic and delicious to cooks in 1935 when the National Mark Calendar of Cooking was written by Ambrose Heath and Dorothy Cottington Taylor. If it was described as beef salad, or beef with mayonnaise it might sound a little more appetising.

The little cookery book was divided up into months with seasonal recipes for each; I  like the sound of a lot of them but August’s don’t appeal quite as much… tomato ice, tomato jelly salad, stuffed cucumber (cooked) and beef mayonnaise… hmmm. The other recipes are more interesting, marrow soup (creamy and herby) fricassée of chicken in a lemon, parsley, butter and nutmeg sauce, plum batter (a little like a clafoutis) raisin brown bread and cider cup… I reserve judgement on stuffed cauliflower.

Beef mayonnaise

  • ½ lb cooked beef (presumably roast)
  • 2 lettuces
  • 1 cucumber sliced
  •  lb tomatoes, chopped, reserving a few slices for decoration
  • 1 hard-boiled egg, sliced
  • mayonnaise made from 2 egg yolks, ½ tsp each of salt and pepper, ½ pint olive oil, juice of ½ a lemon or 2 tsp vinegar
  1. arrange a few large lettuce leaves at the bottom and around the sides of a salad bowl,
  2. break up the rest of the lettuce, (reserving the two hearts) and tear into small pieces
  3. put the shredded lettuce, tomato cucumber, beef in a bowl with the mayonnaise and blend
  4. arrange the beef mayonnaise in the bowl with the lettuce leaves
  5. garnish with tomato slices, egg and lettuce hearts

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