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How to Cook: The Victorian Way with Mrs Crocombe

by Annie Gray, Andrew Hann

Books of the Month Cookery, Food and Drink History

LoveReading View on How to Cook: The Victorian Way with Mrs Crocombe

Sparked by the gargantuan global popularity of English Heritage’s The Victorian Way YouTube series, How to Cook the Victorian Way presents the life and recipes of the real Mrs Crocombe. Head cook at Audley End House from 1878 to 1884, her handwritten cookery book was passed down through her family and uniquely reveals the tastes and dining habits of Victorian Britons.

With context on Audley End House, “one of the greatest houses of Jacobean England”, and absorbing detail on the kitchens of Mrs Crocombe’s era (the book is co-authored by Andrew Hann, head of the historians’ team at English Heritage), her recipes have been modernized by food historian Annie Gray, yet retain their authenticity. Some of them are familiar - pancakes, ginger beer, macaroni cheese, trifle and spotted dick - then there are more outlandish dishes too (to modern tastes, at least), such as mock turtle soup, larded sweetbreads and squab pie.

This beautifully presented, meticulously researched compendium is a true treat for gourmands looking to expand their culinary repertoire - perfect for inspiring flamboyant Victorian ‘Come Dine with Me’ dinner parties.

Joanne Owen

How to Cook: The Victorian Way with Mrs Crocombe Synopsis

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.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781910907429
Publication date: 24/09/2020
Publisher: September Publishing
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781910907429
Publication date: 24th September 2020
Author: Annie Gray, Andrew Hann
Publisher: September Publishing
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 272 pages
Genres: Books of the Month, Cookery, Food and Drink, History,
Categories: General cookery & recipes, TV / celebrity chef cookbooks,

About Annie Gray, Andrew Hann

English Heritage cares for over 400 historic monuments, buildings and places - from world-famous prehistoric sites to grand medieval castles, from Roman forts on the edge of an empire to a Cold War bunker. Through these we bring the story of England to life for over 10 million visitors each year.

More About Annie Gray, Andrew Hann

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