Fresh from the Past

Recipes and Revelations from Moll Flanders Kitchen

By Sandra Sherman; Karen Chotkowski; Henry Chotkowski
(Taylor Trade Publishing, Hardcover, 9781589790889, 300pp.)

Publication Date: November 2004

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Description
Did Defoe imagine what his scrappy heroine Moll Flanders ate for dinner? When he got hungry at his writing desk he probably did-and now we can too. Britain's kitchens were full of exotic ingredients in the 18th century. Cooks experimented with new imports such as pepper, pineapples, and pistachio nuts, combining flavors and textures in creative ways to produce delicious, sophisticated dishes. Hundreds of cookbooks appeared to bring these recipes to the average home cook and, in Fresh from the Past, Sherman and the Chotkowskis bring them to our kitchens. The hottest trend in food today is "fresh, local, seasonal"-the 18th-century cook would be shocked that it could be any other way. In Fresh from the Past, Sherman takes readers along on a wild ride back in time, describing how historic families learned to cook with the seasons. She tells us what they ate for regular meals and at fancy parties, what they ordered in restaurants, and what they got for takeout. From cookbooks of the day Sherman gives us 100+ original recipes, together with contemporary translations that give step-by-step instructions for cooks of any level. Illustrations and gems of fascinating detail sprinkled liberally throughout make cooking-whether for a quick weeknight meal or a special dinner party-a real adventure.

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