BOOK REVIEWS

The Secret Garden Cookbook: Recipes Inspired by Frances Hodgson Burnett's THE SECRET GARDEN Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-01-04 
Review Score: 4 out of 5 star From 5 user ratings
ISBN:0060277408
LANGUAGE:English

" This book is telling me so much I didn't know about Victorian dining habits, tea, kitchen gardens, Yorkshire favorites, so much! And so well organized and appealingly designed. I am thoroughly enjoying this book. " said.

" This was a nice,quick read. It had very easy recipes along with some history and class differences in diets and meal planning. This would be a good supplimentary book to use when reading The Secret Garden with children. " said.

"I picked up this cook book since it is a tribute to one of my favorite books and authors. There are some vegetarian recipes, but most are traditional Victorian era fare. Not to say that the ingredients are going to be hard to come by!

It has the perfect menu for a garden party, Lemon Curd Tartlett,Cucumber Tea Sandwiches,Summer Pudding and of course a dish named Two Fools.

The book has many passages from the book as well as blurbs on the Victorian era , what Dickon and Mary would have eaten based on their economic class as well as Mary & Collin. This is a nice addition for the person who likes to make food based off their favorite childhood stories. It goes well next to my Peter Rabbit Cook Book :)
" said.

"Written in 1999, this book embodies the sense of both time and place from the Victorian era book that inspired it: Frances Hodgson Burnett’s “The Secret Garden.” Following Burnett’s theme of good food nourishing mind and body, author Amy Cotler excerpts activities from “The Secret Garden’s” plot and writes a series of Victorian era recipes to suit each situation. All of these recipes can be prepared in a modern kitchen.

The book format includes not only recipes but quotes from “The Secret Garden” and short descriptions of relevant Victorian activities such as the first use of tea in the UK, the invention of baking powder, the Victorian garden, the shifting of the breakfast hour due to industrialization, the influence of Indian foods, and changes in eating habits inspired by Queen Victoria. Hand-drawn illustrations by Prudence See lend a Victorian authenticity and help organize the material into a useful format for both reading and cooking. Throughout, a theme of contrast in diet between rich manor residents and poor cottage dwellers is prevalent and points up the romanticization of this contrast in Burnett’s book, gently giving readers a more realistic view of food distribution during Victorian times.

Like the book on which it is based, this cookbook will appeal to both children and adults. Some of the recipes, like coddled eggs, fruit lassi, spring peas with mint, dough cakes, Welsh rabbit, cocoa, and cucumber sandwiches can be easily prepared by children. Others, such as Cornish pasties, crumpets, currant buns, and Yorkshire pudding, are more appropriate for adults. Older children may want to prepare such recipes as scones, parkin (old fashioned gingerbread), little sausage cakes, and jam roly-poly. Other recipes are of historical significance and perhaps better imagined than made, for example pease porridge, roasted fowl with bread sauce, kedgeree, and cabinet pudding. I’ve prepared the scones, fresh mango chutney, coddled eggs, glazed carrots, and spring peas with mint, and all are excellent.

This book is fairly hard to find. I located it in my local library’s juvenile section.
" said.

" Although this cookbook is shelved in the Juvenile section, it is definitely a find for adults who like to cook and connect with a favorite childhood read. The references to historical cooking in the Victorian era and descriptions of the English garden are fascinating, as well as many simple English recipes to try: Scones, Lemon Curd Tartlettes, Peas with Mint, and many types of Pudding. " said.

"
An unexpectedly deep look at some tough subjects for a juvenile cookbook. Cotler starts things right off the bat admitting that the Secret Garden takes place in a Never-Never Land version of England, addressing the fact that the Industrial Revolution left the country with some serious social issues, among them, poverty and starvation. Also, classism was a wee bit of a problem.

The book includes histories about different foods, recipes for all occasions, discussions of who ate what and when, where the food was coming from, and what menus were typical for different age and social groups. Cotler gets into how the foods tie into the themes of the book of growth and health as well as covering the fact that the foods all represent a cuisine that is not just British but distinctly Yorkshire in its flavor, with discussion on that particular culture.

Then, in a completely unexpected bonus at the end, she includes some British-Indian dishes while discussing the oppressive colonialism that lead to some opportunitive cuisine.

My one point of disagreement was the fact she is so insistent The Secret Garden is set in the late Victorian age, while I would argue (admitting perhaps to influence from some of the film adaptions) that the book has a much more Edwardian feel to it.

Hoping to try my hand at ‘summer pudding’ this weekend. :-)
" said.

" This book is telling me so much I didn't know about Victorian dining habits, tea, kitchen gardens, Yorkshire favorites, so much! And so well organized and appealingly designed. I am thoroughly enjoying this book. " said.

" This was a nice,quick read. It had very easy recipes along with some history and class differences in diets and meal planning. This would be a good supplimentary book to use when reading The Secret Garden with children. " said.

January 2018 New Book:

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