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The Bloomsbury Cookbook: Recipes for Life, Love and Art Hardcover – 17 Mar 2014

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Thames and Hudson Ltd (17 Mar. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500517304
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500517307
  • Product Dimensions: 18 x 4.3 x 24.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 31,536 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Unlike any other cookbook this year, this is a meticulous and lavishly illustrated account of the food of the Bloomsbury set. --The Sunday Times

Works well in both kitchen and armchair. Luxuriously produced, it is packed with entertaining stories of Bloomsbury eccentricities, and illustrations remind you of the considerable talents of Grant and Vanessa Bell. I'd sooner have this ancient haul from WC1 than any glossy new tome from a TV cook. --The Guardian

A compendium full of recipes, food-related paintings and biographical anecdotes ... casts the Bloomsberries in a new light and brings them to life. --BBC.com

Woolf it down. --Elle Decoration

A delicious glimpse of the gastronomy of the Bloomsbury Group ... a treasure trove of lunches, dinners, celebratory feasts, descriptions of gastronomic treats, and umpteen recipes. --The Independent

Exceptionally beautiful, filled with paintings and drawings by the Bloomsbury Group themselves ... This is the most endearing and enjoyable book yet about the Bloomsbury Group. --Country Life

An enticing blend of cultural and gastronomic history. --Times Literary Supplement

Delicious ... the literary equivalent of a fantasy dinner party with the writers, poets, painters and philosophers who comprised the Bloomsbury set ... offers a completely fresh insight into their characters and appetites both gastronomic and otherwise. --TwinFactory.co.uk

Casts a fascinating new light on Bloomsbury ... this book will enable you to create some simply splendid meals, which will encourage conversation today, just as they did when poets, philosophers and writers of yesteryear sat together to talk of cabbages and kings and put the world to rights. --Oxford Times

Civilization as they knew it seemed to be coming to an end - and with it, all the elegant meals, conversational dinners and epoch-making risottos that had fueled their discourse since the turn of the century, and which this richly entertaining book movingly chronicles. --The Independent

My find of the year so far is The Bloomsbury Cookbook ... I had not thought there was anything more to be said on the subject of the Bloomsburys and their habits. But Jans Ondaatje Rolls illuminates corners others have not thought to visit - the dark shelves of the pantry, the final blurry moments of a dinner party, the tray brought quietly to an invalid and as a result, they start to seem vastly more likeable. --Observer Food Monthly, Rachel Cooke

Her's is a sprightly approach - a social history, witty and erudite ... The Bloomsbury Cookbook is lavishly illustrated with works by the Bloomsberries themselves. --The Spectator, Henrietta Garnett

Luxuriously produced, it is packed with entertaining stories of Bloomsbury eccentricities. --The Independent

Glorious ... a feast of eccentric detail. --The New Statesman

A gorgeous illustrated cookbook which certainly deserves a place in any hall of fame where gastronomes worship ... if you enjoy comedy in the kitchen, this is the book for you. --Western Mail and The Birmingham Post

A witty and erudite social history which will appeal to lovers of food and literature alike ... exquisitely produced. --Sussex Life

Goes where no biography has gone before: into the kitchen. Jans Ondaatje Rolls gets to the heart of the group by looking at what they put in their stomachs, and the result is a smorgasbord of 300 recipes, scores of beautifully reproduced pictures, and zillions of extracts from their letters, diaries, and various books which describe tastes, ingredients and the joy of a good feed. In page after delicious page, 50 years of soup, salmon and friendship unfurl. --The Daily Telegraph

Need this book. --Nigella Lawson, Twitter

Need this book --Nigella Lawson, Twitter

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gail Cooke TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 21 April 2014
Format: Hardcover
What a joy The Bloomsbury cookbook is to read and to return to again and again. Relooking at the book is not only for copying the incomparable recipes but to be reminded of the wit and wisdom of the Bloomsbury Group. It is to hear their voices once more and be reminded of their unique personalities whether it be E. M. Forster, Virginia Woolf, Roger Fry, John Maynard Keynes, Lytton Strachey, T. S. Eliot or one of many others. These were important personages in the worlds of art, literature, politics who turned over the traces of the repressive Victorian era and encouraged others to do the same. They invited open communication, debate, argumentation, laughter and love. Thanks to the skill of Jane Ondaatje Rolls we are privy to their thoughts, letters and jottings accompanied by photographs and paintings - what a gift!

While much as been written about the Bloomsbury Group to my knowledge no one save Rolls has presented them at table where they conversed, solidified friendships, pondered and disagreed at length. We learn their favorite foods, which illuminates a side of their personalities hitherto unexplored. For instance, Lytton Strachey's favorite dish was rice pudding which he ate every day and was prepared by Dora Carrington who was a self taught cook all the better to care for him. Frances Partridge prepared "Tipsy Chicken" (the meat was marinated in gin). The group lingered long at table and like many of us had a fondness for chocolate cake. Further, we learn whose table was bountiful and whose a bit on the lighter side.

Readers may vicariously enjoy sharing ideas and breakfast with the Group at Monk's House, picnics (sometimes washed down with champagne), evening parties at Gordon Square and summer parties in Charleston.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By L. A. Ellett Iolite on 5 April 2014
Format: Hardcover
This book is amazing. Its somewhere between an academic piece, a story and a recipe book. I'm familiar with many of the places featured in the book as I work in Lewes and visit Charleston, Glyndebourne, etc now & then. This book brings the Bloomsbury set to life, plus I'm enjoying the recipes - which translate well to the modern age. Marinated beef fillet recipe is excellent. This book can be dipped in and out of, very interesting reading - a brilliant achievement to have researched and created such a treasure.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. E. Grissen on 25 Dec. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was far better than I ever expected. It is part cookbook with recipes, but also part biography, artbook and social history. I loved to read about the different members of Bloomsbury and what they liked to eat. The story is enriched with anecdotes and references from the novels they wrote or their letters.
The book is beautifully illustrated with photographs and paintings, the whole book looks very beautiful.
In short, this is one of the best non-fiction books I own.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mitch on 19 May 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Delighted with this very beautiful book, lovely illustrations and interesting text and recipes. Would definitely recommend this book to any Bloomsbury Set lovers.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Christine M on 26 May 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A beautiful Book , lovely to look at and fascinating to read . Have recommended it to several friends , who also love Charleston
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Graham on 30 Nov. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A treasure of a book to dip into time and time again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Miss A T Lingard on 24 Nov. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
beautiful book , more than just a cook book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael David Treacy on 13 Nov. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
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