Anyway, the thing about some vintage cook books is that the photos are few and far between and what photos there are tend to be a bit rubbish. Not only that but the recipes err on the side of too bloody complicated.
Fanny Cradock's "Adventurous Cooking" is a case in point:
Fanny and her hen-pecked hubby, Johnny:
|Famous in the 60s and 70s, Fanny was known to be bossy, snobby and a bit of a tyrant|
These are the instructions for "Savoury Swans with Hard-boiled Eggs" consisting of a hideous concoction of whipped cream coloured with green food-colouring piped on top of the egg with the addition of a pipe cleaner to form the head and neck of the swan:
I couldn't get what she was on about but then eureka! I found this picture on the internet of what they should look like. Erm, nice.
Remember what I said about rubbish photos? Well, I found this bizaare item under the cakes and puddings section. It clearly has a meringue base but what the topping is I know not. I think it's supposed to be chantilly cream but it looks horribly like raw mince or possibly spaghetti.
I thought about doing this little gem for the Retro Cook Off: the chequer board:
It consists of bread squares, buttered and then spread with alternating caviare and smoked salmon and finished off with a parsley border. Sorry chaps, but I was clean out of cavier.
Instead I went for the simplest recipe that Fanny could muster: Oranges a la Turque:
I took my one orange, peeled it and simmered in water for 15 mins. I then removed the orange and and added sugar to the water. I simmered for a bit and then I popped the orange back in and simmered for a further 10 mins, took it out and popped it on a plate. Meanwhile, I tried to cut the pith from the orange peel and then cut the peel into thin strips. Popped them into a pan of water, brought them to the boil, strained the water away and added a second lot of cold water, brought to the boil and did the whole damn thing again for a third time.
|A gratuitous pic of the peel boiling away furiously|
At last! I present to you Orange a la Turque:
|You know, I'm thinking that it doesn't look that bad|
Mr J and P tucking in:
|Mmmm, slightly chewy.|
|I think it's a thumbs down from Mr J and P|
After my efforts, I went on the internet to find more images of Fanny's delightful cooking. Hell, why didn't I do this? Banana Candles. Aren't they utterly brilliant? Covered in nuts, I think, and topped off with glace cherries.
They don't make them like that anymore.........