A Christmas Interlude

As Christmas approaches, I thought it would be fitting to take a break from my chronological journey through literature and come up with something a little festive. Obviously Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (1843) has the Christmas meal par excellence, but with the school term having only ended on Friday I don’t think I really have time to roast a goose or make a plum pudding in order to replicate the meal enjoyed by Bob Cratchit and his family.  Continue reading “A Christmas Interlude”

The Civilizing Effects of Food

When I first blogged about food in Robinson Crusoe I promised that I would – like the eponymous protagonist – try cooking with goat, as soon as I sourced some goat meat.  Well, goat meat has arrived at my local farmers’ market, so I couldn’t resist the opportunity to try it out.   Continue reading “The Civilizing Effects of Food”

The Luxury of Time

One of the most interesting features of Daniel Defoe’s novel Robinson Crusoe is the detailed accounts of how the protagonist learns to survive on an uninhabited desert island.  Once he has built and furnished his shelter, he begins a journal (using paper and ink that he has found on the wrecked ship) and, through this, documents his attempts to build his own version of English society on the island.  He describes making different shelters, building a boat, civilizing a savage – Man Friday whom he rescues from cannibals – and, most importantly for my purposes, growing and cooking food. Continue reading “The Luxury of Time”