Preserving Food Preserves Life, or, Mutton in the Pot

I harbor a dirty little secret. I quite dislike the taste of mutton. For a writer who writes about food, that’s almost as bad as saying “I hate liver.” That’s also true and makes me quite suspect, especially when I mumble about French cuisine. Anyway, fortunately for me when I was kid, mutton never crossed the…

Dare Not to Speak the Name: The Foul Art of Plagiarism in Cookery Books

Poor Hannah Glasse. Literally! Except for Martha Stewart, Glasse may be one of the few cookery book writers who did hard time for financial woes. Author of The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy (1747), this eighteenth-century cookery-book writer lived a life that her contemporary Jane Austen might have invented for a character in one…

Strawberries, the Quintessential British Delicacy of the American South

They say that behind every recipe lurks a story. And that’s indeed true in the case of strawberries and the American South, where there’s a story, a big one. You see, Southerners in the United States like to point to strawberry shortcake and claim it as their own. Ditto strawberry pie. But strawberries, All-American perhaps, still…