This book had been sitting on my Grandma's bookshelf for a number of years, and now she passed away recently at the ripe old age of 95yrs old, it's ended up in my possession.
It's an extremely good cookery book, I'd say it was mainly aimed at the more advanced hobby cook (my Grandma had a "Corden Bleu" cookery certificate, and used to run a cafe that could seat 300 people, back in the 1950's)........ think of the classic English TV cookery series Two Fat Ladies - Entire Series - 4-DVD Box Set [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.2 Import - United Kingdom ], and you'll get the idea of what this book is along the lines of.
Cobbled together by the Reader's Digest Association in the early 1980's, and no ISBN number printed inside to help with tracking the thing down either here on Amazon or over at Google Books.
The book is wonderfully illustrated, and is quite chunky at 400 pages or so, and worded in ways such that "Chapter 1" is titled "Part the First", and so on (think titled screens to Black Adder III, and you may get the idea), but goes back to normal modern speak when reading the actual details in the chapters.
Chapter1 starts out with details on
- The Medieval Peasant's Kitchen
- The Elizabethan Country-house Kitchen
- The Victorian Rural Kitchen
Chapter2 (aka "Part the Second") contains the actual Farmhouse recipes that gives the books it's title, and runs from pages 16 to 365. It's broken down into the following sections (which I've translated into normal speak):
- Winter and Summer soups & broths
- Potted Meats & Fish
- River, Sea & Shellfish
- Roasts, Stews and other meats
- Poultry & Game
- Savoury Sauces, Forcemeats & Dumplings
- Egg & Cheese Dishes
- Root, Green & other vegetables
- Savoury Pies, Puddings & Pastries
- Hot & Cold Sweet puddings
- Breads, Cakes & Biscuits
- Marzipan, Toffess and other Sweetmeats
- Possets, Punches & other beverages
- Jams, Pickles & Preserves
All measurements are given in imperial (english) + metric measurements.
The bulk of the recipes are old fashioned English, Welsh & Scottish... old classics like: Scotch Broth, Cock-a-Leekie Soup, Potted Pigeons, Brawn, Potted Beef, Potted Herrings, Fish & chips, smoked trout, smoked salmon, smoked eels, kippers, bloaters, Pot Roast of Beef, Shepherd's Pie, Bubble & Squeak, Roast Beef & Yorkshire Pudding, Lancashire HotPot, home made sausages, Toad-in-the-hole (sausage baked into a yorkshire pudding), Tripe & onions, haggis, roast stuffed chicken, Farmhouse Chicken, Braised Turkey country style, Yorkshire Stuffed Goose, Roast saddle of venison, Jugged hare, Roast Grouse, Quail casserole, Parsley Sauce, cranberry sauce, Horseradish sauce, Apple Sauce, Sage & Onion Stuffing, Chestnut Stuffing, Scotch Eggs, Curried Eggs, Macaroni Cheese, Pease Pudding, Steak & Kidney Pudding, Melton Mowbray Pie, Cornish Pasties, Jam Roly-Poly, Bread & Butter Pudding, Old English Trifle, Blancmange (from scratch, rather than a packet), Summer Pudding, Treacle Tart, Yorkshire Curd Cheesecake, Apple Pie, Baked Stuffed Apples, mince Pies, Christmas Pudding, Devonshire clotted cream, Custard Sauce, Brandy Sauce, Brandy Butter, crusty White bread (proper old fashioned style, not that supermarket pish), Irish soda bread, Doughnuts, Hot Cross buns, chelsea buns, Sally Lun Loaf, Simnel Cake, scottish shortbread, Yorkshire Parkin, scottish Oatcakes, madeira cake, Marshmallows, Treacle Toffee, Peppermint creams, Toffee Apples, Marzipan, Chocolates, Sloe gin, Mead, Potato Wine, Dandelion Wine, Nettle Beer, Ginger Beer, Iced China Tea, Old fashioned Lemonade, Blackcurrant Jam, Raspberry Jam, Strawberry Jam, Redcurrant Jelly, Green tomato Chutney, Tomato Sauce, Piccalilli, pickled onions, mincemeat (like you find in mince pies), marmalade, Irish Stew & much more.
Each recipe section also has a few international recipes thrown in towards the end, such as:
USA: New England Clam Chowder, Boston Brownies, Apple Butter, American Cheesecake, Baked Alaska
Poland: Black Cherry Conserve
Caribbean: West Indian Pickle, Jamaican Banger
Spain: Sangria, salted almonds, Gazpacho soup
Holland / Netherlands: Orange Gin
France: Rich Chocolate Truffles, Croissants, Brioches, Ratatouille, Mayonnaise, Hollandaise Sauce, Onion Soup
Mexico: Peanut Brittle
Russia: Blini, Piroshky, Borshch
Italy: Zabaglione, Braised Fennel, Fresh tomato sauce, Golden Fried Rabbit, Veal Escalopes
China: Watercress Salad, Deep-fried Pigeon
Morocco: Cous Cous
Greece: Moussaka, Taramasalata
After all that, we finally get to Chapter3, or "Chapter the Third - country fayre".
This is split into the following sections:
- 5,000yrs of Britain's Food
- Eating habits through the centuries
- Herb Gardens in History
- Food from the wild
- Calendar of Feasts & Festivals
- A Compleat map of the British Isles
"Chapter 4", aka "Part the Fourth"......... that's just the index section.
Quick sum up... get this book, it's an absolute must if you're a serious food nerd and like watching cookery shows on the TV. It's also an absolute must if you just want to advance your cooking skills from the absolute basics to doing serious cooking.