Review: The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook

downtonabbey cookbookThe Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook: From Lady Mary’s Crab Canapes to Mrs. Patmore’s Christmas Pudding – More Than 150 Recipes from Upstairs and Downstairs

by Emily Ansara Baines

Hardcover: 256 pages
Publisher: Adams Media
ISBN-10: 1440538913
ISBN-13: 978-1440538919

(Barry’s score 4 stars out of 5)
Buy the book @ Amazon
The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook: From Lady Mary’s Crab Canapes to Mrs. Patmore’s Christmas Pudding – More Than 150 Recipes from Upstairs and Downstairs

Product description:

Bring Upstairs and Downstairs Fare to Your Table

Nibble on Sybil’s Ginger Nut Biscuits during tea. Treat yourself to Ethel’s Beloved Crepes Suzette. Feast on Mr. Bates’ Chicken and Mushroom Pie with a room full of guests. With this collection of delicacies inspired by Emmy Award-winning series Downton Abbey, you’ll feel as sophisticated and poised as the men and women of Downton when you prepare these upstairs and downstairs favorites. Each dish finds its roots within the kitchen of the grand estate, including:

Mrs. Isobel Crawley’s Smoked Salmon Tea Sandwiches
Filet Mignon with Foie Gras and Truffle Sauce
Walnut and Celery Salad with Pecorino
Decadent Chocolate Almond Cake with Chocolate Sour Cream Icing
Very Vanilla Rice Pudding

You will love indulging in the splendors of another era with the snacks, entrees, and desserts from this masterpiece of a cookbook.

My thoughts:

I love the show Downton Abbey. When I first picked up this book, I expected it to be a collection of recipes of the show’s era. The cookbook, I believed, would be for little more than entertainment value. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the recipes were updated for modern ingredients, modern techniques, and modern palates. I think the book will be something that steampunks, Neo-Victorians, and Downton Abbey fans can embrace.

The book is broken into two sections with the first eight chapters belonging to the “DINING WITH THE CRAWLEYS” section:

  • HORS D’OEUVRES VARIÉS
  • FIRST AND SECOND COURSES: SOUPS AND FISH
  • THIRD COURSE: ELEGANT ENTRÉES
  • FOURTH AND FIFTH COURSES: JUICY JOINTS AND SUCCULENT STEAKS
  • SIXTH COURSE: RESPLENDENT ROASTS,GORGEOUS GAME, AND ACCOMPANYING SALADS
  • SEVENTH COURSE: THE NECESSARY VEGETABLE
  • THE FINISHING TOUCH: SWEETS AND DESSERTS

The wannabe foodie in me couldn’t help but drool while reading recipes like “Lobster Thermidor” and “Lobster with Mornay Sauce”, but the realist in me knows that “Part 2 SUSTENANCE FOR THE STAFF” would most likely be the things found on my table.

  • HEARTY BREAKFASTS TO START THE WORKDAY
  • A QUICK LUNCH BETWEEN BUSINESS
  • DOWNSTAIRS SUPPER
  • DESSERTS FOR THE SERVANTS’ SWEETTOOTH

The font used gave a sort of charm of the era and the brief anecdotes were excellent.”Most teas offered by the ladies of Downton Abbey are cream teas, and thus Mrs. Patmore would be quite skilled at making — and storing — clotted cream.”

On the downside, the book would have benefited from some pictures and art. Not only would pictures give the readers an idea of what the finished product should look like, but the settings would be beautiful. All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed it and I give it 4 stars out of 5.

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