Pauper’s Broth

Paupers Broth

Pauper’s Broth

We’ve been to the seaside.  Brighton, actually.  What an amazing place.  We stayed at a rather “interesting” B & B.  Full of character, especially the owner and the plumbing.  (Note to self:  Beware of plumbing in stately, old properties;  beware of stately old owners of stately, old properties)

All was not lost, however, as we found some fantastic places to eat.  If you ever visit the English south coast then the vegetarian experience at is mind blowing.  But if you want a great British seafood supper, then you can’t beat  Most of the Labour Party Conference delegates were also enjoying its huge offerings when we visited.  And what a lovely bunch they were.  His Nibs wasn’t present, unfortunately.  Our Jeremy was probably nibbling on a simple sandwich or even sharing one with the rather extraordinary number of homeless people the town attracts.

But back to the food.  A barmaid in The Prince Albert started talking about home made broth and what a real broth should look like.  “It must have bits floating in it,” she stated.  “Bits of cabbage and stuff,  and lots of liquid, and pearl barley”

I agreed wholeheartedly with the floating issue but usually lose control when it comes to adding things to a soup.  My daughter  describes my soups as “crowded soups” and my son-in-law referred to them as resembling toxic swamp.  Huh!  What do I care!

Anyway, here’s my take on a broth.  I’ve called it Pauper’s Broth because  this is a really basic broth.  Flavour it with anything that takes your fancy.  I added a few odd bits that I found hanging around in the fridge (like beer!) but let your own creativity be your guide.  Just remember – everything should float.


  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • small knob ginger, finely chopped
  • small, mild chilli, finely chopped
  • two tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1 cup cabbage, chopped ( or about 8 brussel sprouts)
  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped
  • bunch of fresh mixed herbs (e.g. parsley, sage, thyme, rosemary) finely chopped
  • 1 cup of soup mix (lentils, barley, split peas)
  • 2 pints stock (mixture of vegetable, Marmite, Bovril and beer!)



Heat oil in heavy bottomed pan.  Add onion, garlic, ginger and chilli and sautee until golden and soft. Add all the remaining ingredients except the stock and continue to cook for 1 minute.  Add the stock, bring to the boil then turn down low, cover and cook for about 1 hour.  Taste and season according to own preference.


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