Tag Archives: Book of Household Management

English breakfast

25 Mar
English breakfast

English breakfast in London circa June 2010. Is it that different from what Isabella Beeton is proposing?

Never know what to serve for breakfast? Think cereal is ok? Maybe toast and jam? Isabella Beeton, that 19h century doyenne of all things cooking, would think you were a jelly short of a proper luncheon. Here’s what she recommends for the “comfortable meal called breakfast”:

Broiled fish, such as mackerel, whiting, herrings, dried haddocks, &c.; mutton chops and rump-steaks, broiled sheep’s kidneys, kidneys à la maître d’hôtel, sausages, plain rashers of bacon, bacon and poached eggs, ham and poached eggs, omelets, plain boiled eggs, oeufs-au-plat, poached eggs on toast, muffins, toast, marmalade, butter, &c. &c.

I wonder if it’s low GI…

Btw if you have any interest in Mrs Beeton at all, and even if you don’t, be sure to read Kathryn Hughes’ biography – once you’ve read it, you’ll never think of Isabella in the same way again.


What to do when you run out of milk

18 Feb

Don’t have any milk for your morning coffee or tea? Mrs Isabella Beeton, in her classic 1861 Book of Household Management, solves the problem easily and, in her opinion, excellently:

An excellent substitute for milk or cream in tea or coffee

1815. Ingredients. – Allow 1 new-laid egg to every large breakfast-cupful of tea or coffee.

Mode. – Beat up the whole of the egg in a basin, put it into a cup (or a portion of it, if the cup be small), and pour over it the tea or coffee very hot. These should be added very gradually, and stirred all the time, to prevent the egg from curdling. In point of nourishment,  both these beverages are much improved by this addition.

Sufficient – Allow 1 egg to every large breakfast-cupful of tea or coffee.

Call me crazy, but I never thought to have my morning egg in my morning coffee.