Resurrection: 1936 spiced pickled pears

I’ve just come back from visiting an old university friend in Stroud, Gloucestershire. While down there we did a tour of the charity shops and I discovered a 1936 edition of Cookery Illustrated & Household Management for the bargain price of £1.50. There are two things charming about this book. The first is that it has chapters with titles like ‘Entertaining without a Maid’ which, considering when it was published and the growing clouds of war looming, seems a uniquely BritishRead more

Torrijas for Caleb via Milagros

I’d not cooked torrijas (luxury French toast, but from Spain) for nearly a quarter of a century but was reminded of them at a recent dinner to celebrate a friend’s birthday. I was taught how to make them by Milagros, my little old lady neighbour from Calle Cervantes in Zaragoza, northern Spain – a kindly dueña who took a shine to her rowdy English student neighbours. Caleb is like my partner Jarod – his job is to bring out theRead more

Grandma’s lamb with cinnamon gravy

My Grandmother was a genteel woman. I grew up in the northern home counties so a trip to the Sussex coast was always a highlight – sea, sun when it graced our presence and the promise of great food. Mabs was typical of her generation, born at the beginning of the 20th Century and lived through two wars; one as a child, the other as a grown up. Her approach to food was honest, and for her age, daring. SheRead more