I found this cool little cookbook, published in 1974, by the name of English Food by Jane Grigson recently in a second hand book store. I know of Jane Grigson from other books I’m sure used to be (and might still be) a part of my Mum’s cookbook library. I’m not sure why I haven’t even chosen to read any of them, particularly since I managed to devour this volume cover to cover over a few days of train travel to and from work. It was published in the day when there was no such thing as food photo’s to whet your appetite and celebrity chef’s were few and far between. Cooking as we know it now in the public sphere was really only starting to take off. It was the era of Elizabeth David and Betty Crocker. What I love about it though is Jane Grigson is very honest and earnest about the quality of food that does exist in England even back in the 70’s, and despairs at the poor reputation it has gained, even then, as a consequence of supermarkets, mass production and dwindling local farms. She gives great insight into the history of some recipes, and great English ingredients, sharing the originals in the language of the past, and modernising them to suit the palate and kitchen of her audience. Given that history, culture and food are all strong interests of mine, its little wonder that I was engrossed very quickly in the pages of this book.
This leads me to my next food challenge, but this time its with a twist as its a challenge for us all, if you choose to be a part of it.
English Food by Jane Grigson is officially going to be the first in a new monthly series of shared cooking experiences that we will be having here on Sharing The Food We Love, called the Cookbook Guru. Check out the details here.
What do you have to do to join in?
- Select a recipe from this great little book (there is plenty of versions online if you don’t own or can’t access the book in hard copy).
- Create a write up on your blog about it in the month of November and add your link to this link party site.
At the beginning of December there will be a round-up discussion hosted by Sharing The Food We Love to bring all of our recipes and ideas together.
I’m excited to see what everyone creates and brings to the English Food Party. Feel free to share this amongst your food blogging friends. Like every meal, shared together at a table is always more satisfying that dining alone.
Happy Exploring, Happy Cooking & Happy Eating,