How do I Branston Pickle?
November 9, 2018 3:47 PM   Subscribe

Having lately discovered the joys of Marmite, I became interested in trying that other seminally British condiment, Branston Pickle. I have obtained a jar. Now what do I do with it?

So, after a little searching on Amazon, I ended up with two quite large jars (720g I think) of Branston Pickle, one of which has been passed on to my father. Now we need ideas. The only thing I know to do with it is: cheese sandwich. But this jar would take a lot of cheese sandwiches to get through. What other ways do you typically use Branston Pickle? Non-typical ways? I like experimenting in the kitchen and trying new things, so I’d like to hear about both classic ways to serve it, and whatever weird ideas you’ve come up with.

Also, how long is it good for once the jar is open?

Other unusual-in-the-US food things I should try?
posted by catatethebird to Food & Drink (27 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
By the spoonful.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 4:09 PM on November 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

I really love it on Roast beef (not pot roast) or any roast meat really. It's amazing in a roast beef sandwich. It's also great with sausages. Or mix it into a meatloaf. My mum used to eat it with apple pie, but then she used to eat aged cheddar with fruit cake so make of that what you will. Mix it with cream cheese and a dab of mayo for a dip.

As an Aussie I'd be remiss if I didn't suggest trying either Vegemite if you like Marmite. The
posted by wwax at 4:11 PM on November 9, 2018

In my experience, it is pretty much only ever typically used on cheese sandwiches or on the side of a Ploughmans. Which is why its third use is as a semi-permanent fridge decoration. I want to say it lasts forever, but that's only beause I've never yet reached the bottom of a jar before getting to the point I thought "I don't even remember buying that, maybe I should sling it," because of its relatively limited uses. (Clearly I should get more imaginative, it never even occurred to me to try and expand the repertoire...!)
posted by penguin pie at 4:25 PM on November 9, 2018 [9 favorites]

I know you've tried it with cheese but... take a thick slice of bread, toast it, spread BP on top, add a slice or two of good ham, top with a generous amount of mature cheddar (sliced or grated) and grill until the cheese melts and starts to brown. Oh boy.
posted by humph at 4:25 PM on November 9, 2018 [10 favorites]

Oh and it goes especially well with pork pies but I can't help with US equivalents, sorry!
posted by humph at 4:27 PM on November 9, 2018

Yeah, ham is the other standard partner, and as humph says, you can Branstonise a croque monsieur or a breville toastie. It also does well with braises or (British-style) casseroles or stews if you want a bit of sweet zing.

(There is actually a website for this.)

It is one of those items that can hang around in a kitchen cupboard for a long time, though I'd suggest putting it in the fridge. It is always treated as somewhat indestructible.
posted by holgate at 4:27 PM on November 9, 2018 [3 favorites]

This is really just an extension of the cheese sandwich concept, but I use Branston Pickle on cheese & crackers.
posted by mhum at 4:31 PM on November 9, 2018

Get some toast, top it with a good white cheddar, put the Branston on top of that, ten devour.
posted by mibo at 4:31 PM on November 9, 2018

Oooh, cottage pie with branston? Great idea, thanks for that holgate - I've done something similar with minced lamb and Pataks brinjal pickle and it was delicious.
posted by humph at 4:35 PM on November 9, 2018 [1 favorite]

I’ve never done it before but I just had the idea to try it with Indian food, like a spoonful on top of dal. I realize this is a bit against the spirit of the question but I’m going to try it, anyone who wants an update when that happens can drop me a memail :)
posted by SaltySalticid at 4:54 PM on November 9, 2018

Not against the spirit at all, SaltySalticid, any ideas welcome. That actually does sound good.

Also, what’s the consensus, does BP go over the cheese or under the cheese?
posted by catatethebird at 5:31 PM on November 9, 2018

I’ve never done it before but I just had the idea to try it with Indian food

Oh yeah, of course! Branston Pickle is a chutney. Chutney that shit up.

Also, what’s the consensus, does BP go over the cheese or under the cheese?

For cheese and crackers, I personally alternate. Munch a couple with BP on top, then a couple underneath. If it's inside a cheese sandwich, I guess you can just flip the sandwich over?
posted by mhum at 5:39 PM on November 9, 2018 [3 favorites]

Welsh Rarebit! It's so so good with Branston's.

4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
Fresh tomatoes, chopped (about ¼ cup or so or about one roma tomato)
2 tablespoons Branston Pickle
½ cup porter or other dark beer
¾ cup heavy cream
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Any kind of hearty bread

In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and then whisk in the flour. Cook for a couple of minutes until foamy but don’t let it brown. Then whisk in the mustard, worcestershire sauce and the beer. Pour in the cream and whisk to combine. Gradually add the cheese, stirring constantly, until the cheese melts and the sauce is smooth. Add a couple of spoonfuls of Branston Pickle and chopped fresh tomatoes to taste. Then pour over toast and serve immediately.
posted by belau at 5:44 PM on November 9, 2018 [3 favorites]

By the gods, I love that stuff. I haven't experimented much with it, though; just give me some good fresh crusty bread and some real sharp cheddar and I'll eat it daily until the jar is empty.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:31 PM on November 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

I use it in Curries. And serve it with the same curry. I called these English curries. Usually chicken or turkey, with carrots onions a little garlic potatoes, curry powder obviously. I also add raisins and Apple. A couple of good spoonfuls of Branston. It makes a sweet Curry, spicy but not hot. Served over rice and another spoonful of Branston.
posted by Ftsqg at 6:32 PM on November 9, 2018 [4 favorites]

I was introduced to it at a British pasty shop in Northern Virginia, USA and had it as a condiment with their meat pies. It is so wonderful that I can remember the name of the condiment and not the flavor combos in the pastries, which won prizes at the British bake-off...
posted by childofTethys at 6:54 PM on November 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

posted by poffin boffin at 7:12 PM on November 9, 2018

I love Branston pickle on baked potatoes with lots of sharp cheddar cheese. NOM!
posted by netsirk at 7:39 PM on November 9, 2018 [3 favorites]

It doesn't make many cheese sandwiches when you use more of it than cheese. Or bread.

It's a pickle. I have no idea how long it used to survive being eaten in my parents' house, but short of drying out I can't imagine what would go wrong with it.
posted by How much is that froggie in the window at 8:34 PM on November 9, 2018

Chop it up very fine and use it for stuffed eggs, mixed with mayo and the egg yolk.
posted by zorseshoes at 8:42 PM on November 9, 2018 [2 favorites]

One of my favorite pasta sauces is Branston Small Chunk Pickle & diced shallots & sardines.
posted by Homer42 at 11:38 PM on November 9, 2018

It goes on the cheese.

(Next one you should try Gentleman's Relish, or brown sauce.)
posted by lokta at 3:28 AM on November 10, 2018 [1 favorite]

I've put a dollop of it on a baked potato, and that was pretty good.
posted by pykrete jungle at 7:11 AM on November 10, 2018

This is a question, not an answer, but zorseshoes' response gave me the impetus to ask: alongside scrambled eggs?
posted by kate4914 at 10:38 AM on November 10, 2018

On top of the cheese, always on top. It’s got to contrast with the creamy cheesiness, you don’t want it muddling up with the similarly-earthy taste of the bread or cracker. </science>
posted by penguin pie at 3:06 PM on November 10, 2018 [1 favorite]

I said it here first


screw chilli sauce.

Branston is the perfect foil both for fried and steamed meat-rich dumplings.

While jiaozi, pelmeni, mandu, wonton etc all could benefit from Branston's Brilliance, I say MOMOS.
posted by lalochezia at 5:35 PM on November 10, 2018 [2 favorites]

It's great on a burger, IMHO.
posted by macdara at 5:08 AM on November 11, 2018

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