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Yorkshire buck.

Craig Claiborne included this most British of recipes in a 1965 illustrated bagatelle published by The New York Times. The enigmatically entitled Cookbook for Booksellers includes only twelve recipes, all but one of them introduced by a literary quotation. A soothing dish for a night of foul weather. For four bucks.


  • 4 poached eggs on toast
  • 1 lb grated good sharp Cheddar or other pungent hard British cheese.
  • about ¾ cup pale ale, porter or stout
  • 2 Tablespoons heavy cream
  • a small touch of salt
  • about ¼ teaspoon or more cayenne
  • about ½ teaspoon mace
  • at least 2 teaspoons Worcestershire
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • pepper




  1. Dump the cheese, beer and cream into a heavy pot over medium low heat and cook, stirring, until the cheese melts.
  2. Throw the salt, cayenne, mace and Worcestershire into the pot, reduce the heat to low and stir to combine everything.
  3. Add the eggs to the pot, whisking them immediately and furiously to prevent them scrambling.
  4. Once the buck thickens to a creamy (not curdled) texture turn off the heat, pour the buck over the eggs and season it with pepper.


-Claiborne only specifies Cheddar, but other cheeses may be just as good.

-He requires stale beer but that is not necessary.

-He omits the cayenne, uses nutmeg (which is fine) instead of the even more traditional mace and specifies a mere teaspoon of Worcestershire.

-Splashes of hot sauce at Step 2 would do not harm.