a project ....of sorts

teresa_nc7April 17, 2012

A few days ago I embarked on a project to read all of Mrs. Isabella Beeton's Book of Household Management. I did skip the long reference to "putrid and spoilt meat" but I plan to read most of this tome. I am in Soups at present, but only 9% through the entire book on my Kindle.

Much of the book I find enlightening and very interesting; I read the section on paying and receiving calls with much interest. The section on the duties of the household servants I could easily identify with: too much to do and not enough time! Sounds like my job!! LOL!

The Apple Soup recipe I found recently on a YouTube video about Mrs. Beeton with Sophie Dahl. It didn't look very appetizing on video and it doesn't sound all that appetizing in the book. But some of the other soups do sound like something I might want to try.

Has anyone else read all of Mrs. Beeton? I can tell this will take me some time to complete. If I try some of the recipes I post them here.

Teresa

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lindac

Where can I get it?

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 2:25PM
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triciae

Is this one of the Amazon free Kindle downloads? If so, I'd like to get it.

/tricia

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 2:51PM
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teresa_nc7

It was free on Amazon Kindle. Your local library may have a copy or you might find it on Project Gutenberg.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 3:23PM
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teresa_nc7

"The modern Romans are merged in the general name of Italians, who, with the exception of macaroni, have no specially characteristic article of food."

~ Mrs. Isabella Beeton, who didn't live long enough to enjoy the wealth of Italian cuisine.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 4:29PM
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ynnej

Wow! I love Italian. Although I think I can see where she's coming from- up until recently I hadn't ventured too far past spaghetti and pizza. But it is a wonderful cuisine and well worth exploring.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 9:40PM
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momj47

You can download it from Project Gutenburg.

Here is a link that might be useful: Mrs. Beeton

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 9:53PM
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Tracey_OH

I first heard about Mrs. Beeton in Bill Bryson's book AT HOME. Quite an interesting back story, including lots of plagiarism! Now I really want to read Mrs. Beetons book)

Here is a link that might be useful: Bill Bryson's description of Mrs. Beeton

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 10:43PM
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bbstx

free at amazon

Here is a link that might be useful: Mrs. Beeton at Amazon.com

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 7:25AM
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teresa_nc7

What is the point of boiling a soup for three hours, taking it off the heat, adding some seasoning, then boiling it for another hour or so? Mrs. Beeton seemed to think that all food had to be cooked to death in order to be nutritious and tasty.

Teresa

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 8:11AM
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slowlane

Thanks for the link; I can't wait to read this! I have a collection of really old "marriage manuals" and home economics books, and they are always fascinating to me.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 9:15AM
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sally2_gw

I've never heard of her. Maybe I need to check out Bill Bryson's book.

I love Italian food, but I was surprised and amused to read in the bio of Julia Child, My Life in Paris, that she didn't like Italian Food, had no respect for it. Go figure. Maybe at that time it just wasn't well represented to the rest of the world.

Sally

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 9:18AM
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momj47

Soup sat on the hob all day, the cook started it in the morning, and over the course of the day added stuff. She would pull it to a lower heat area to simmer or keep warm and when it was time to eat, slide it back on the heat (if it was a hot soup, of course).

In a poor home, it would sit there all the time, the wife would add a bit of meat one day, some swedes or other root veggies another day, whatever they could find.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 3:45PM
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teresa_nc7

There are many referrals to "pounded sugar" in Mrs. Beeton's Book. Do you think this is meaning powdered sugar? For example: a good sauce for various boiled puddings calls for 1/4 lb. butter, 1/4 lb. of pounded sugar, a wineglassful of brandy or rum - the butter is beaten to a smooth creaminess, the sugar added along with the brandy and all stirred until well mixed, then serve with the pudding.

Teresa

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 2:32PM
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momj47

Here's an interesting site

Here is a link that might be useful: Being Mrs. Beeton

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 10:31PM
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lindac

The "pounded sugar" would be like confectoner's sugar without any cornstarch....and it would yield what we call "hard sauce".
Thanks for the link...it's now on my Kindle.
Linda C

    Bookmark   April 20, 2012 at 1:27PM
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jasdip

Great site Momj47. I just came across this:

"pounded sugar"- thanks, internet, because how else would I have known that this was a Victorian term for exceedingly moist brown sugar, and that I could make my own by adding a little molasses to regular sugar?

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 7:46AM
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jasdip

Whoops, on reading further on that link, I found that in the Victorian age, Pounded sugar is regular granulated white sugar. It was formed into hard cones, and had to be broken apart and pounded into usable sugar.

This very much reminds me of a series on tv a number of years ago. I was totally enthralled. It was a reality show where 4 couples volunteered to be taken to the country in Kansas or somewhere, and they literally had to dress and live like Pioneers. The wives learned how to bake cornbread, bread, using fire. They had to build their home, chop wood all summer to last them thru the winter, go to the country store once a month (I think it was) via horse and trailer and stock up.

One couple were millionaires in Silicon Valley, in their 40's with 2 teenage daughters. The wife never did adjust and hated it. At the end of the show when they came back, she hugged her washer and dryer, and the husband was outside sitting on a ravine, reflecting, and he said the he feels something is missing with his life. He completely embraced the simpler hard-working life.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 7:55AM
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teresa_nc7

If you like this sort of "living history" reality show, BBC4 has made some really great series now available for viewing on YouTube:

Tales from Green Valley, farm setting in Wales, c. 1600s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CapsH0RQgE8

Victorian Farm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NA1269IgGY0

Edwardian Farm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFjdpu4QoLo

Manor House

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z9DlV54l62g

1900 House

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdhqGUWGzjc

1940 House

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4x5drU9mAk

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 9:38AM
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