Re: [pepysdiary] Food in Early Modern England 1500- 1760 -- review
Nice review of what seems to be a neat book -- another for Additional Reading?
The mere mention of fennel made my mouth water for certain Italian sausage,
and it's late morning.
At 07:52 AM 4/19/2007 +0000, you wrote:
>Food in Early Modern England
>Continuum, 396pp, £30, ISBN 9781852855383
>John Evelyn would find our agonies about food all too familiar. He was
>impressed with the modern `miracles of art' whereby plants were forced
>in hot beds and meats and fish were preserved for months or years; but
>nothing tasted better or was more wholesome than fresh ingredients. He
>was preoccupied by healthy diets, noting that `husbandmen and
>laborious people [were] more robust and longer lived than others of an
>uncertain, extravagant diet'. Others, from the 16th century through to
>the 18th, who were lucky or rich enough to be able to eat wild
>produce, rated their taste far above cultivated or reared foods. They
>hated that the seasons were being blurred by technological advances in
>preserving foodstuffs; that commercialisation of the food market led
>to bland standardisation; that man was losing touch with nature. With
>these boons came forgetfulness; in 1827 one writer noted that many
>former staples borage, burnet, fennel, caraway, mangetout, peas,
>saffron and sorrel were disappearing from the tables of the lower
>classes as tastes became homogenised.
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