Category Archives: 1860s

Victorian Berocca

A half pint of water First up in the lemonade trials: Mrs Beeton.

Reading through these recently posted lemonade recipes I didn’t immediately discern that good old Mrs Beeton (dead at 28, having apparently lived part of her childhood actually “in the grandstand of Epsom racecourse”, which may have had something to do with it) makes the same rookie lemonade faux pas of attempting to sweeten it with nothing more than granulated sugar stirred into cold water.

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Lemonade Recipes

Friend of The VCBT Tracer Hand recently asked us on Twitter if we have any recipes for lemonade. It turns out we do. Here they are:

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Eggs a la Dauphine

This was my most elaborate dish for the canape party, and the most challenging to construct. It’s from Francatelli’s Cook’s Guide of 1864, and is another egg dish. Although not strictly a canape the description appeared to be of a dish that could be easily divvied up into individual servings (note the ‘appeared‘!)


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Eggs a la Suisse

spineThis comes from the oldest of my cookbooks – a recent score from Help The Aged. It’s C.E Francatelli‘s Cook’s Guide, first published by Richard Bentley of London in 1860 (as far as I can tell), and this edition is from 1864. Part of me is incredulous  that I would find a  145 year old book for £1.50, but it appears I did. It’s a fascinating read, the vast majority of the dishes look like they would be pretty hard to make, for want of obscure or obsolete cuts of meat, brands of seasoning or kitchen equipment.  The end of the book does have a series of adverts, including one for Adams and Son, Kitchen Outfitters of Haymarket, and one for Crosse and Blackwell (‘Purveyors in Ordinary to Her Majesty’), both merchants advertising a staggering array of goods unfamiliar to modern cooks (see Flickr for images from the book).

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