Taste: The Story of Britain Through Its Cooking
There is nothing new under the sun. As Kate Colquhoun’s utterly fascinating Taste proves, this nation has always been fascinated by food and cookery, even though it's the more recent explosion of media interest that has made the subject seem omnipresent. Subtitled The Story of Britain through its... show more
There is nothing new under the sun. As Kate Colquhoun’s utterly fascinating Taste proves, this nation has always been fascinated by food and cookery, even though it's the more recent explosion of media interest that has made the subject seem omnipresent. Subtitled The Story of Britain through its Cooking, Colquhoun’s brief is to take us on a mesmerising journey from the Roman era right up to the age of bullying TV celebrity chefs. The book arrives emblazoned with recommendations from such august cookery figures as Marguerite Patten, and mixes sharp social history into its examination of 2000 years of culinary experimentation and achievement. The early Britons enjoyed wild boar feasts, and such delicacies as olive oil and spices were introduced in Roman Britain, and there have been few periods when the English have not been trying to tickle the taste buds in new and inventive ways (even in the straightened times of wartime rationing, great invention could be found in utilising what few ingredients were available). Colquhoun poses (and answers) a massive range of intriguing questions such as: what was the common factor between roast meat and morality in the 18th century? And why did the Black Death inaugurate new conditions for rural baking? Colquhoun set herself a daunting task with this ambitious book, but Taste succeeds triumphantly in both entertaining and informing. If you read it, you'll be able to enlighten (or bore) friends with a million and one arcane facts about food and cookery. But the thing that most of us will take away from the book is the realisation that the novelties of modern cooking that we pride ourselves on are not quite as novel as we thought -- our ancestors were very imaginative in the kitchen. --Barry Forshaw
Publish date: 2007-10-30
Pages no: 460
Edition language: English
, European Literature
, British Literature
, Food And Drink
, Food History
On the surface, a book about British cuisine may seem to be an exercise in culinary trivia. Yet as Kate Colquhoun demonstrates, the study of what Britons ate can provide considerable insight into the history of their society and culture. Starting in the Iron Age, she traces the changes in both the B...
An absolutely fantastic history of food in England, beginning in the Stone Age up through the ages as the British learned to cook and refine ingredients.