Abbey Cooks Entertain: 220 Recipes with Photos to Help You Entertain the Downton Way
Written by a Downton Abbey fan for Downton Abbey fans, this is a cookbook for all of those cooks who wish to bring a touch of English tradition to their own Abbey. Inspired by the fine cuisine served at the fictional Downton Abbey and other grand English country houses at the turn of the century, this book combines food, history and healthy eating.
Great food has a history. Imagine food from a historical perspective, from an era where food held special meaning, denoting wealth and influence. Dine on dishes from the Titanic and remember the lives affected by the tragedy. Imagine entertaining guests in your own Abbey with a little more class and elegance.
If you’re like me and most of the other 8.2 million viewers of the third season finale this past Monday night, you’re now suffering from Downton Abbey withdrawal. What to do? Cook! (Of course.) Don’t cook just anything, however. Why not cook some of the food and meals that would have been enjoyed not only by Lord Grantham and Cora Crawley, the Dowager Countess, Matthew Crawley, and Ladies Mary, Edith, and Sybil but also by Carson (the Butler), Mrs. Hughes, Anna Smith, John Bates, Mrs. Patmore, Daisy, Thomas, O’Brien, and others at the grand abbey?
Abbey Cooks Entertain is your guide. Pamela Foster, a culinary historian, has prepared and published 220 recipes and color photos providing ideas for brunch, afternoon tea, cocktails, and elegant dining “upstairs” as well as for servants hall gatherings “downstairs.” The extensive cookbook (400+ pages) also includes sections that cover entertaining at a traditional outdoor garden party and throughout the year: Christmas, Easter, Guy Fawkes Day, Halloween, Hogmanay (you can Google that one), and St. Patrick’s Day. A final section will help you stock your own abbey larder.
I got no farther than the brunch recipes before deciding to cook, but I’m sure Abbey Cooks Entertain will keep me busy through season 4 (at least). Foster’s joy in both cooking and history shines through in her recipes and also in her recipe headnotes and photos. The section on afternoon tea, for example, includes several pages on the origins, history, and etiquette of tea.
Be sure to check out the Downton Abbey Cooks website, which includes even more recipes, Downton tidbits, and historical info on Edwardian England. This is also where you can order your signed copy of the cookbook, available in PDF, Kindle, and ePub formats.
C&B&R next-to-try recipes: Filet Mignons Lili (from the Titanic menu); Mrs. Patmore’s Raspberry Meringue Pudding; London Cocktail