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Worcester Lampreys


Lampreys in a sauce highly seasoned with anchovies and spices, the precursor of 'Worcester Sauce'

The river and sea lamprey of the Severn are both protected species of the Severn Estuary European Marine Sites therefore there is no harvestable surplus. The City of Gloucester have a tradition to send a lamprey pie to Queen for special occasions, which are now sourced sustainably from Canada.

Original Receipt in 'A New System Of Domestic Cookery' by 'A Lady' (Mrs. Maria Eliza Ketelby Rundell) (Rundell 1807);

After cleaning the fish carefully, remove the cartilage which runs down the back, and season with a small quantity of cloves, mace, nutmeg, pepper, and allspice; put it into a small stewpot, with as much strong beef gravy, and madeira or sherry, in equal quantities, as will cover it. Cover close: stew till tender, then take out the lamprey and keep hot, while you boil up the liquor with two or three anchovies chopped, and some flour and butter; strain the gravy through a sieve, and add lemon juice and some made mustard. Serve with sippets of bread and horse-radish. When there is spawn it must be fried and put round.
Note.- Cider will do in common, instead of white wine.

Worcester Journal - Thursday 19 April 1810

Original Receipt in 'The Cook's and Confectioners Dictionary: Or, the Accomplish'd Housewife's Companion.' by John Nott (Nott 1723)

Sauce for Lampreys
Take Oil, Vinegar, Salt, Pepper, and a little Mustard, shred Parsley, an Anchovy, and a few Capers, and beat them all well together in an earthen Vessel or Porringer then put it into a Saucer, place it in the middle of the Dish, and lay the Lampreys round it.

'Worcester Herald' - Saturday 10 December 1836

See: Worcestershire Potted Lamperns

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