Regional Recipe: Whitley Goose

March 25, 2014

Whitley Bay is a coastal town overlooking the North Sea, not far from Newcastle. When I first came to Newcastle I used to hop on the metro at the weekend and go for a wander along the coastline. There is a stretch of golden beach that runs to St Mary’s lighthouse in the North. When the tide is out you can walk across and visit the lighthouse. My son spent many a happy hour investigating the rock pools when he was a child. If you walk to the South you pass the dome of Spanish City, immortalised in the Dire Straits song “Tunnel of Love”. It was a funfair, but is now being redeveloped. Further along the coast, past Cullercoats you reach Tynemouth and the ruins of the castle and priory overlooking the sea. There are plenty of shops to call in and fish and chips in the sea air are always welcome.

Whitley Bay LighthouseWhitley Goose is a traditional recipe from Whitley Bay, which actually has nothing at all to do with geese. It is a simple dish of boiled onions mixed with cheese and cream which can be served alongside a roast dinner as a side dish or with bread as a simple tasty supper. It reminds me of another traditional Northumberland dish, Pan Haggerty which is more filling due to its use of potatoes.

Whitley GooseI would love to know more about the origins of the name, Whitley Goose. I am sure there must be a colourful  story behind it.

Read more: Pease pudding recipe

Whitley Goose


  • 4 Onions
  • 110 g 4 oz Cheddar cheese
  • Black pepper
  • Butter
  • 450 ml ¾ pint single cream


  • Peel the onions and place them whole into a pan of water. Bring to the boil and boil for 15-20 minutes until the onions are soft. Drain and allow to cool.
  • Preheat the oven to 200C 400F Gas Mark 6.
  • Grease a casserole dish with some butter.
  • Chop the onions into rough segments and add to the casserole dish with half the cheese. Season with black pepper.
  • Add the cream and top with the remaining cheese.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden.

13 responses to “Regional Recipe: Whitley Goose”

  1. What a brilliant name for a dish, I love quirky things like that, and England is certainly good at it.

  2. sarah hill wheeler (@hill_wheeler) says:

    Gutted Boy doesn’t like onions as this would be really good for him! I am going to substitute potatoes for half and do a half and half! #TastyTuesday.

  3. Chris says:

    This pleases the cheese-lover in me. I like the photo with the lighthouse, too. Thank you for joining in with Bloggers Around the World.

  4. Ooh, I’d never heard of this one ! 🙂

  5. Galina V says:

    I have never come across this dish, what a lovely name! Beautiful photos, Alison!

  6. Honest Mum says:

    Oh wow this looks delicious, I would dip warm baguette in their and mop up all that tasty sauce! Yum! Thanks so much for linking up to #tastytuesdays x

  7. Karen says:

    My grandmother used to make this, as well as Panackalty too, and Stotty cakes with cheese savoury! All my mum’s family come from the North East…..I miss it a lot…..Thanks for sharing a very familiar recipe with me, Karen

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