Essex is a county in the south-east region of England, and these are a collection of local and regional recipes handed down within families who have lived and worked in the Essex area. All of the recipes below are regionally authentic, originally coming from recipe books published in the 1800s or 1900s, with the weights and measurements adjusted (alongside the old standards) where appropriate for the modern kitchen.
Water, 4 oz (115g) suet, 8 oz (225g) plain flour, chopped sage and onion, pepper and salt, dices of streaky pork.
Make a suet crust from the suet, flour and water and roll out. Spread with layers of diced pork, onion and sage, and season. Wet the edges of the crust, then roll up. Wrap the roll in greaseproof paper brushed over with melted fat, twisting the ends of the paper like a sausage, and put the roll in a pudding cloth. Boil in boiling water for 1 1/2 hours or steam for 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Make a gravy from the pork trimmings and serve pork plugga hot with gravy.
AUDLEY END SAUCE
1 pint (600ml) boiling milk, 1/2 gill (75ml) cream, 1 1/2 oz (45g) white sugar, 2 oz (60g) butter, 2 oz (60g) cornflour, 1 beaten egg, 1 tablespoonful moist brown sugar.
Mix the cornflour to a paste with a little of the milk then stir this paste into the boiling milk; add butter and sugar and boil for 4 or 5 minutes. Beat up the egg with the cream and add it very slowly indeed to the thickened mixture which you must allow to cool a little otherwise the egg will curdle. Beat up the mixture with an egg whisk, pour into a buttered dish, sprinkle brown sugar on top and caramelize under a hot grill.