‘Downton Abbey’ fan creates show-inspired cookbook



AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE

Published — Monday 4 February 2013

Last update 3 February 2013 11:01 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

Sizzling British hit “Downton Abbey” has stolen the hearts of its legions of avid fans, but one viewer hopes the television show will steal its way to their stomachs as well.
Canadian culinary historian Pamela Foster has crafted a cookbook based on the early 20th century British cuisine featured in the show — though she’s given it a modern, and more healthful twist.
So don’t expect to find a recipe for kidney souffle in Foster’s book, no matter how much Downton’s lords and ladies — and their maids and footmen — may have enjoyed it.
“Some of the food, people nowadays just wouldn’t like it,” she said of the dishes that use “parts of animals that most people aren’t used to eating anymore.”
Foster also reduced the fat content and amended the cooking methods so the recipes could more easily be replicated by today’s cooks. And she took out some of the butter to lighten up the rich pastries served with tea “to make them healthier.”
“There are some recipes (Scotch eggs or fritters) I wouldn’t touch because they’re fried,” Foster said in a telephone interview from her Toronto-area home.
Foster, whose blog DowntonAbbeyCooks.com chronicles her thoughts on the show with recipes to fit the mood, started the project last year after a marathon viewing of the first season.
“Each episode, I paid close attention to what was being served. Some was just mentioned, and some you saw on camera,” Foster said.
The author told AFP she had long been interested in the cuisine of Britain’s noble elite, because her husband traces his roots to a family like Downton’s Crawleys. Foster’s blog turned into an e-cookbook “Abbey Cooks Entertain” and now, due to its huge popularity, a print version is being considered.
She explained that the cuisine of the Edwardian period was influenced by both French and Indian foods.
“Edward VII loved food, sauces and curries in particular, and people did then as (royal watchers) do now: They did what the king did and his food passions spread,” Foster explained.
Many of the recipes are easy even without kitchen staff, she said, because French chef Auguste Escoffier simplified them at the end of the 19th century.
However, she cautioned that Downton’s fans probably won’t want to eat exactly like the aristocracy did back then.
The English aristocracy, wary of fresh vegetables they believed caused scurvy, ate a lot of meat and fish bathed in French sauces in the upstairs dining rooms, while servants ate mostly vegetables downstairs.
Moreover, “if you were the king, you ate five or six times a day, multiple courses... and then had a midnight snack. To eat like they did, you’d spend all day eating,” she said.

Her cookbook includes 220 recipes, including the roast chicken Mrs.Patmore dropped on the floor in the first season of the show and the apple charlotte that she refused to make.
“I tried to give a flavor of the cuisine,” Foster said. “It’s nice to give British cuisine a boost in popularity and respect. They were known as the worst cooks in the world, except for the Scots and their broth.”

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

RIYADH: Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman briefed the Cabinet, on Monday, about the message he sent to the Kuwaiti emir and the messages he received from the Moroccan king and the Qatari emir.The king also spoke about the outcome of his m...
RIYADH: The Eastern Mediterranean Office (EMRO) of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday announced that the region is considered a Zika virus-free zone.Dr. Alaa Alwan, the regional director of EMRO, said that it does not mean that Middle East...
JEDDAH: The Saudi Health Council is working to establish an electronic system to prevent manipulation of sick leave holidays.Dr. Yaqoob Al-Mazrouh, secretary-general of the council, disclosed this during a seminar on Sunday. He did not elaborate on h...
RIYADH: Specialized Clinics Arabia (SCA) treated a total of 9,220 Syrians at the Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan during the month of January 2016, according to Dr. Hamid Mufalana, SCA medical director.“Many of the patients were children who were given...
JEDDAH: The Jeddah police have solved the mystery surrounding the thrashing of a man by another, the video clip of which had gone viral.It was a Herculean task for the police to search for the victim, who had not bothered to lodge any complaint. The...
JEDDAH: The Cutoms Department at Yanbu’s Prince Abdul Mohsen bin Abdul Aziz Airport recently foiled an attempt to smuggle 64,165 Captagon pills found hidden in four boxes.Saad Al-Buqami, director-general of Customs at the Airport, said: “During our c...
AL-AHSA: Plans are afoot to turn the Al-Ahsa dates festival into an international event by adopting top standards in the manufacture, packaging and marketing of the product, Adel Al-Mulhim, the general supervisor of the festival, has said.Speaking du...
RIYADH: A gang comprising two women and youth has been arrested for allegedly looting cash from pharmacies and snatching women’s handbags in malls.Col. Fawaz bin Jameel Al-Maiman, police media spokesman of the Riyadh region, said the arrests were mad...
RIYADH: Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar on Sunday called for conservation of water and electricity, even as the Water and Electricity minister said Saudi Arabia will need an investment of SR500 billion for power projects over the next 10 years t...
RIYADH: More than 200,000 people accused of various crimes were investigated by the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution (BIPP) in the financial year of 1435-1436 A.H.Among the 218,000 who were investigated, around 30 percent or 65,000 were...
RIYADH: Thousands of Saudis have visited the German pavilion at the Janadriyah festival since it was opened by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman last week, in the presence of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and German Amba...
DAMMAM: The cold wave in many parts of the Kingdom over the last week caused a decline of between 30 percent and 50 percent in farm production. This decline in turn drove prices of agricultural products at wholesale markets up by 30 percent.Farmers s...
RIYADH: The Ministry of Commerce and Industry warned on Monday that heating devices should have a voltage of 220 volts with a capacity not exceeding 2,500 watts.The announcement was made when MCI inspectors seized more than 3,000 substandard heating...
ALKHOBAR: Nearly 100 leading figures in the government and private institutions have completed training programs specializing in integrity and anti-corruption provided by the Saafah Foundation for Good Example in Riyadh, Jeddah and Alkhobar.The secre...
JEDDAH: Iraqi authorities executed in Baghdad on Sunday a Saudi prisoner, Abdullah Azam Al-Qahtani, 35, on charges described by his family as fabricated.Al-Qahtani had spent almost 13 years in the Iraqi prisons.Rumors about the execution of Al-Qahtan...

Stay Connected

Facebook