The sale will be held at Forum Auctions, and its vice-president, Rupert Powell, praises both the passion and the knowledge of the collector. Caroline Crisford is interested not only to food, but also to drinks taken from the British“, he notes. She also had a particular taste for France and Italy. ” These books and manuscripts, spanning five centuries, take us from raw materials (places in the vegetable garden or the farm) to recipes that transform and trace the evolution of food.»
All the pieces are valued at between £60 and £80,000 – a straw, therefore, of the kind you would put in a goat’s cheese.
Funny thing, we still find the first edition of Hannah Glass’s book – published under the pseudonym of A Lady – The art of simple and easy cooking . It would be, more or less, the ancestor of the works signed Cyril Lignac, Home madeeven even Simplepublished by Jean-François Mallet.
We discover, for example, the original recipe for one of the most popular dishes in England: the Indian Curry. This compilation was released in 1747 and remained for more than a century during a veritable Bestseller.
Exciting and French cuisine
Another rarity,The French cook, attributed to the founding father of French cuisine, François Pierre La Varenne (1615-1678). It is to him that we owe the bisque, the béchamel or even the mille-feuille – as well as the introduction of the bouquet garni in the kitchen. He will have literally revolutionized the stoves: his work thus remains one of the most important in France, and will remain in use until the French Revolution.
The version up for auction is a second edition, Italian, estimated between £2,000 and £3,000. But none the less valuable.
Others are yet to be discovered, such as the work of Dr Daniel Duncan, Salutary advice against the abuse of hot liquors, especially coffee, chocolate, tea, brandy and strong waters, dated from the 17th century. In fact, these drinks, which appeared in the middle of the period, from China, North Africa and South America, were perceived as exotic – therefore an outward sign of wealth.
Or, the good doctor warned his contemporaries against the abuse of these drinks, likely to alter the humors of the human body. Indeed, the great theory of the time was that blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile balanced body and mind. Introducing stimulants such as caffeine or alcohol would therefore disrupt the smooth running of life.
Finally, Louis-Auguste II de Bourbon, Prince of Dombes (1700-1755), was the grandson of Louis XIV and his mistress Françoise-Athénais de Montespan. But he was also an accomplished amateur cook, author of theGascon cook. He also dedicated it to himself, in an attempt to conceal the true identity of the author from readers.
Recipes appreciated by her contemporaries, because they are easy to follow, but particularly tasty. An edition dating from 1740, reporting experiments during dinners with the aristocracy of the time.
The sale will be held this June 23, from 12 p.m. – feet under the table, therefore.