After posts on 19th century complaints about plagiarism and the evolution of recipe writing style, we finally get to the recipe that originally attracted me to William Kitchiner’s 1818 book, The Cook’s Oracle: Mock Tomata Sauce [sic]. When I first saw Mock Tomata Sauce on my screen, I had a few thoughts. First: ????. Next: I need […]
In a scene in the 1953 film The Band Wagon, a cast member offers Fred Astaire “some pizza pie.” Could this be one of the first mentions of pizza in a Hollywood movie?
I don’t like celery, so it might have been a defense mechanism when I started noticing it on menu after menu from the late-19th and early-20th centuries. As I looked through the Buttolph Collection of Menus for food conservation messages on World War I-era menus, it seemed that nearly every menu included celery as a […]
As I’ve discussed before, in the olden days, catsup/ketchup was about much more than tomatoes. Cookbooks from the 18th and 19th century are ripe with recipes for catsup/ketchup that contain ingredients that are decidedly non-ketchup ingredients, like walnuts, anchovies, and oysters. In the early 19th century cookbook The Cook’s Oracle, author William Kitchiner shares seven […]
Last time, I wrote about an important 19th century cookbook, The Cook’s Oracle, by William Kitchiner and noted that his book was published during an era of significant cookbook evolution. One of the most important was how recipes were written: the structure and style of recipes.
The following Receipts [Ed. note: recipes] are not a mere marrowless collection of shreds, and patches, and cuttings, and pastings, from obsolete works, but a bona fide register of practical facts, accumulated by a perseverance not to be subdued, or evaporated, by the igniferous terrors of a roasting fire in the dog-days. The Receipts have […]
This recipe for carrots simmered with cumin, mint, and vinegar is really old: it’s derived from a book written more than 1,700 years ago, around the days of Caesar, Augustus, and Tiberius.
Reports about seasonal food from the farmers market are common today: for example, KCRW’s Good Food has a weekly farmers market report, the San Francisco Chronicle covers seasonal produce in the Sunday Food and Home section, there are apps about seasonal produce for your phone, and guides printed on paper. I have been following these reports for a […]
Kale salad — superfood in a bowl, a nutritional powerhouse, a bold canvas for bold flavors — has been a major trend in recent years. A recent article in Food52 — A New Genius Salad from the Chef Who Started the Kale Salad Craze — notes that it was introduced to a wide audience in late […]
I’d like to conclude my celery trilogy by looking at the ngram for celery (the first two parts of the trilogy were about celery on restaurant menus and celery vases). Ngrams show the popularity of a word or phrase throughout time and are especially useful for slang, grammar, and spelling preferences (like ketchup and catsup). An ngram is […]