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Annie Gray is an historian, cook, broadcaster and writer specialising in the history of food and dining in Britain from around 1600 to the present day, conducting her research both in libraries and in kitchens. She has worked at Audley End amongst other historical kitchens, and gives lectures all over the country. She presents history documentaries including Victorian Bakers, and appears on BBC Radio 4's The Kitchen Cabinet. She lives in East Anglia.
What does it mean to eat like a queen? Elizabeth gorged on sugar, Mary on chocolate and Anne was known as 'Brandy Nan'. Victoria ate all of this and more. The Greedy Queen celebrates Victoria's appetite, both for food and, indeed, for life. Born in May 1819, Victoria came 'as plump as a partridge'. In her early years she lived on milk and bread under the Kensington system; in her old age she suffered constant indigestion yet continued to over-eat. From intimate breakfasts with the King of France, to romping at tea-parties with her children, and from state balls to her last sip of milk, her life is examined through what she ate, when and with whom. In the royal household, Victoria was surrounded by ladies-in-waiting, secretaries, dressers and coachmen, but below stairs there was another category of servant: her cooks. More fundamental and yet completely hidden, they are now uncovered in their working environment for the first time.
Avis Crocombe really did exist - she was head cook at Audley End House in Essex from about 1878 to 1884. Although only a little is known about her life, her handwritten cookery book was passed down through her family for generations and rediscovered by a distant relative in 2009. It's a remarkable read, and from the familiar (ginger beer, custard and Christmas cake) to the fantastical (roast swan, preserved lettuce and fried tongue sandwiches), her recipes give us a wonderful window into a world of flavour from 140 years ago. How to Cook the Victorian Way is the definitive guide to the life, times and tastes of the world's favourite Victorian cook. The beautifully photographed book features fully tested and modernised recipes along with a transcription of Avis's original manuscript, plus insights into daily life at Audley End by Dr Annie Gray and Dr Andrew Hann, and a foreword by the 'face' of Mrs Crocombe, Kathy Hipperson. It showcases the best recipes from Mrs Crocombe's own book, alongside others of the time, brought together so that every reader can put on their own Victorian meal. It's a moreish smorgasbord of social history - an absolute must for fans, foodies and anyone with an appetite for the past.
'Zingy, fresh, and unexpected: Annie Gray, the queen of food historians, finds her perfect subject. A book to devour.' - Lucy Worsley This is the story of a woman who was not a royal, not rich, not famous, simply someone who worked hard and enjoyed her life. Beginning in 1882, she ranged through life in the country, life in the town, life in her own house, and in that of others. She travelled, married, had children and a highly successful career. For while Georgina Landemare saw herself as ordinary, her accomplishments, and the life she lived, were anything but. She started her career as a nursemaid, and ended it cooking for one of the best-known figures in British history, Winston Churchill, a man to whom food was central, not only as a pleasure by itself, but as a diplomatic tool in a time when the world was embroiled in a worldwide war. Victory in the Kitchen is a culinary biography: a life lived through food, ranging from rural Berkshire to wartime London, via Belle Epoque Paris and prohibition-era New York. Through one eager eater, and one skilled cook, Annie Gray contextualises twentieth century food through two figures who were both intimately involved with it. Recipes include Georgina's German Kougelhof, Curried Brains, macaroons, Boodles Orange, Mousse de Maple and 'Chocolat Cake Good'.
In official partnership with Downton Abbey and with 50 stunning photographs featuring stills from across the series and right up to the latest film release, this collection of 70 delicious cocktail recipes is a lavish toast to the glamorous world of the Crawleys. With a foreword by Julian Fellowes, the writer and creator of Downton Abbey, and an introduction by food historian Annie Gray, this curated selection of recipes spans the world of Downton, from drawing-room party drinks to downstairs hangover cures and more. In addition to classic concoctions like a Mint Julep, Prince of Wales Punch and Ginger Beer, this collection features character-specific twists such as Downton Heir, Turkish Attache, The Valet and The Chauffeur. Photographed using the original lead crystal used on set, each cocktail is guaranteed to raise your spirits, whether by channeling the verve of Lady Mary, the wit of Violet Crawley or the plain speaking of Mrs Patmore. With a brief history of each drink and peppered with quotes from Downton characters, the recipes are organized by the places the drinks were served: The library (stirred drinks and after-dinner drinks) The grounds (refreshing drinks) The great hall (party drinks) The drawing room (pre-dinner drinks and hangover helpers) The village (everyday drinks) With these cocktails, relish the rich traditions and flavours of Downton Abbey without end.
The Official Downton Abbey Cookbook presents over 100 recipes that showcase the cookery of the Crawley household - from upstairs dinner party centrepieces to downstairs puddings and pies - and bring an authentic slice of Downton Abbey to modern kitchens and Downton fans. Whether adapted from original recipes of the period, replicated as seen or alluded to on screen, or typical of the time, all the recipes reflect the influences found on the Downton Abbey tables. Food historian Annie Gray gives a warm and fascinating insight into the background of the dishes that were popular between 1912 and 1926, when Downton Abbey is set - a period of tremendous change and conflict, as well as culinary development. With a foreword by Gareth Neame, executive producer and co-creator of Downton Abbey, and featuring over 100 stunning colour photographs, many taken on the set of Downton Abbey and using the original glassware and china, The Downton Abbey Cookbook also includes a special section on hosting Downton-themed dinner parties, and includes stills from across the TV series as well as the latest film. Notes on the etiquette and customs of the times, quotes from the characters and descriptions of the scenes in which the foods appear provide rich context for the dishes. The recipes are grouped by occasion, which include breakfast; luncheons and suppers; afternoon tea and garden parties; picnics, shoots and racemeets; festivities; upstairs dinner; desserts and canapes; downstairs dinner; downstairs supper and tea; and the still room. From the upstairs dinner menu: Caviar Croutes Chicken Vol-au-Vents Cucumber Soup Trout in Port-Wine Sauce Quail and Watercress Champagne Jelly From the downstairs dinner menu: Toad-in-the-Hole Beef Stew with Dumplings Steamed Treacle Pudding Jam and Custard Tarts Gingerbread Cake With these and more historic recipes, savour the rich traditions and flavours of Downton Abbey without end.
From Dr Annie Gray, presenter of BBC2's Victorian Bakers What does it mean to eat like a queen? Elizabeth gorged on sugar, Mary on chocolate and Anne was known as 'Brandy Nan'. Victoria ate all of this and more. The Greedy Queen celebrates Victoria's appetite, both for food and, indeed, for life. Born in May 1819, Victoria came 'as plump as a partridge'. In her early years she lived on milk and bread under the Kensington system; in her old age she suffered constant indigestion yet continued to over-eat. From intimate breakfasts with the King of France, to romping at tea-parties with her children, and from state balls to her last sip of milk, her life is examined through what she ate, when and with whom. In the royal household, Victoria was surrounded by ladies-in-waiting, secretaries, dressers and coachmen, but below stairs there was another category of servant: her cooks. More fundamental and yet completely hidden, they are now uncovered in their working environment for the first time. Voracious and adventurous in her tastes, Queen Victoria was head of state during a revolution in how we ate - from the highest tables to the most humble. Bursting with original research, The Greedy Queen considers Britain's most iconic monarch from a new perspective, telling the story of British food along the way.