ISBN-10 1-903018-08-0

ISBN-13 978-1-903018-08-8

Published Mar 2003

168 pages; 187×138 mm; paperback; illustrations



Eileen White


Here we reprint recipes from the classic period of English cookery, approximately 1660 to 1890, as a handy compendium for the curious, saving them the need to own a complete shelf of antiquarian books. Soup was never intended as a stand-alone dish. At its first showing it was merely the broth from a stew: the meat served in one dish, the liquid in another – we are familiar with the idea from the French ‘pot-au-feu’ or ‘bouillabaisse’. And the very word ‘soup’ referred to the ‘sops’ of bread put at the bottom of the dish to soak up and thicken the liquor. These are just two of the intriguing facts to be learned from this anthology of writings and recipes from the heyday of English cookery up to the end of Victorian times. What’s more, the myriad flavours of modern soups are something truly new: brown soup, green soup and white soup were just about the limit of invention in the eighteenth century, even if they did know about ‘portable’ or ‘pocket’ soup cubes, anticipating our packets and our pots. Eileen White has selected texts that explains the place of soup in our diet, and which offer recipes which can be tried today (and just a few that are better to read than to cook).Eileen White is an historian who has worked mainly in the fields of early English drama and the history of food. She edited ‘Feeding a City: York’ and ‘The English Cookery Book: Historical Essays’, also published by Prospect Books, and she is closely involved in the Leeds Symposium on Food History. She lives in Yorkshire.

See Chapter 1 as a PDF. Note, these may take a while to download and the graphics are not as good as in the book.

A PDF of the preliminary matter of Soup, the earliest chapters and the glossary, bibliography and index.