In the run up to Christmas (yes it has started, we have our Christmas cards out and we are only moments away from fake snow on the windows) I thought I might suggest some new releases for those seeking inspiration for the present list. Remember, a book is always welcome… well, it is in my house.
The first, A Book for Cooks, is a blatantly self-indulgent hint to any of my nearest and dearest looking to buy for me. Not history, you may think initially, however bear with me: history is about people and ‘we are what we eat’. (In my case this is clearly several fat capons and an awful lot of butter, I sometimes wonder if my attraction to the past is nothing more than a hankering after a more woman-friendly age when the pins-ups were by Reubens rather Hello magazine…) So first up is an unusual but lovely look at the historical development of food, eating, design and the cookbook. A Book for Cooks is Leslie Geddes-Brown’s list of the 101 best cookbooks of all time. In cookbook terms, all time dates from the early 16th century when recipes began to be written down and published. Prior to that it was an oral tradition where crucial ingredients and cooking times were passed on by a clip round the ear to the nearest scullery boy.