Next morning they would go over the dishes – the soup, the salmon; the salmon, Mrs Walker knew, as usual underdone, for she always got nervous about the pudding and left it to Jenny; so it happened, the salmon was always underdone. (Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway)
However much I love cooking – or perhaps because I love it so much – I often get anxious when cooking, particularly when cooking for others. Will there be enough food? Will my guests like it? Will it be perfectly cooked, perfectly seasoned? Will I impress as a cook? Continue reading “The Anxious Cook”
I don’t usually reread modern fiction – classics are quite a different matter – but this week I’ve been rereading Kate Atkinson’s Life after Life.
Continue reading “A literary compendium of 20th century English food”
One of the starters at the First World War Supper Club has a long and distinguished history in literature. Pea soup – which appears in May Byron’s Pot-luck, our source recipe book for our 1914-inspired menu – is mentioned in the Ancient Greek play, The Birds, by Aristophanes (first performed 414BC). The servant of Tereus, an Athenian prince who has been turned into a bird, explains how he must serve his master and bring him all types of food: “Again he wants some pea-soup; I seize a ladle and a pot and run to get it.”
Continue reading “Pea Soup”