Old World Kitchen: The Rich Tradition of European Peasant Cooking

Old World Kitchen: The Rich Tradition of European Peasant Cooking

by Elisabeth Luard
     
 

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Within the ken of the kitchen, the most basic elements of history, economy, and geography are carried by hand through time; recipes are records of that transmission, keeping culture in seasoned anecdotes. Such tales, told through many generations, provide the contents of Elisabeth Luard's compendium of European peasant cooking. The more than 500 recipes Luard has

Overview

Within the ken of the kitchen, the most basic elements of history, economy, and geography are carried by hand through time; recipes are records of that transmission, keeping culture in seasoned anecdotes. Such tales, told through many generations, provide the contents of Elisabeth Luard's compendium of European peasant cooking. The more than 500 recipes Luard has collected are emblems of parochial lore and family tradition, of common wisdom and cunning necessity, and they treat every imaginable aspect of taste and appetite. The preparations described here are, as Luard writes, "the 'mother-recipes' from which all European cookery springs. . . . For most of us . . . they are as integral a part of our past, and of what shapes and nourishes us today, as our literature and songs, our paintings and technology." We couldn't agree more.

Editorial Reviews

Mark Bittman
Stands the test of time . . . . Filled with hard-to-find gems.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Exploring the culinary heritage of some 25 European countries, Luard offers 300 recipes that display a generous assortment of styles and flavors, organized here by basic ingredients. Italian risotto, French oatmeal soup and Spanish bean stew are characterized as ``corner cupboard dishes.'' Dough-based fare includes Italian fusilli with chili, Bulgarian milk noodles and British steak-and-kidney pudding. Meat recipes range from small game like rabbit with beer and prunes (Belgium) to roast pork and apple sauce (England), shepherd's stew (Rumania), cottage pie (England), spit-roasted lamb (Greece) and even reindeer stew (Lapland). Seafood is also offered in a number of forms from simple grilled prawns (Spain) to bouillabaisse with sweet-pepper sauce (France). Breads, vegetable and sweet dishes round out the offerings. Cooks will note some recipes not known these days for peasant associations, as, for example, hollandaise sauce. Other recipes, like the potato-laden and entirely authentic Irish stew, may seem more curious than useful to some readers. A professionally trained cook, Luard resides in London and is a columnist of the Field. Illustrations not seen by PW. (October 1)
Library Journal
Luard writes about the cultural and geographic influences upon European peasant cooking, and illustrates her text with appropriate recipes. Peasants usually structured their meals around ``a single dominant ingredient at a single moment.'' The author is clearly knowledgeable about the 25 countries represented, and wants to tell all she knows. ``Corner Cupboard Dishes'' and ``Shepherd's Meats'' are particularly interesting. Instructions are conversational and over-detailed and often digress. For limited purchase. SP
From the Publisher
"Through her eloquent writing and delicious recipes, Elizabeth Luard is able to bring us back in touch with the sources of real nourishment. This is a wonderful, inspiring and important book." —ALICE WATERS, founder and owner of Chez Panisse and the author of The Art of Simple Food

"The best at describing 'the cuisine of the necessary' in European peasant life. Filled with ... gems."
—MARK BITTMAN, author of How to Cook Everything

"This book is fascinating. I believe all cooking originates from family or peasant roots and this is a testimony to that belief." —JACQUES PEPIN, author of The Art of Cooking

"Puts other outpourings in the shade, such is its range, passion, erudition and downright deliciousness." —The Guardian

"One of the great cook books of all time." —The Mail on Sunday

"An awesome collection of recipes... Luard writes with authoritative enthusiasm." —New Statesman

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781888173505
Publisher:
Akadine Press, The
Publication date:
09/28/2000
Series:
Common Reader Editions Series
Pages:
538
Product dimensions:
6.92(w) x 10.00(h) x 1.62(d)

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Meet the Author

ELISABETH LUARD is an award-winning food writer, journalist, and broadcaster. She is the author of ten cookbooks, including The Latin American Kitchen, The Food of Spain and Portugal, A Cook's Year in a Welsh Kitchen; three volumes of memoir, Family Life, Still Life, and My Life as a Wife; and two novels. Her thirteen-part television series, The Rich Tradition, was broadcast on BBC2 and SBS Australia. She spent many years living in rural Spain, France, and Italy, and traveling across Europe collecting recipes, many of which are collected in The Old World Kitchen. Her work as a journalist appears regularly in The Daily Mail, The Scotsman, Country Living, Cambria Magazine, The Jewish Chronicle, and The Times Literary Supplement. She is currently Trustee Director of The Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, contributes a monthly column to The Oldie Magazine, and is a member of the team at online culinary magazine Zester Daily.

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