I remember my friend telling his mum he didn’t want to go to the library anymore because all the books had been coloured in. She understood, hardly surprising as she thought bookies were librarians and she thought the same of bookkeepers too. Having said that, she knew how to cook a wonderful Sunday lunch without referring to Mrs Beeton’s recipe book. The only thing she ever read was a raffle book in the hope of winning a Christmas turkey at the butcher’s shop.
The interesting thing about renowned cook, Isabella Beeton, born in 1836, is that despite the image of an old lady in a scullery passing down her lifelong recipes, she died at the tender age of just 29. She wasn’t a country woman either, having been born in Marylebone in London and brought up in Islington, North London, facts that demolish the image we see of an old woman.
To continue reading this chapter click on this absolutely stunning picture I painted not unlike Constable.