Author Topic: 1878 British Army cook book  (Read 4910 times)

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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1878 British Army cook book
« on: May 25, 2009, 01:51:28 pm »
Here is something which may be of interest to Victorian-era cooks and military re-enactors alike - a relatively slender volume (a bit over 50 pages) published by the British War Office in 1878, entitled "Instructions to Military Cooks in the Preparation of Dinners at the Instructional Kitchen, Aldershot". (Established during the Crimean war in the early 1850's, Aldershot Camp became the primary military training base for the British Army.)

Entire original volume, viewable and downloadable in PDF format - http://books.google.com/books?id=evIHAAAAQAAJ

Title page only, below -
Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier
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Offline Dr. Bob

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2009, 11:44:42 pm »
RJR,

Thanks!!  I shared this with several of my fellow re-enactors who do the 95th Regt. of Foot in the War of 1812.  When we do events, we eat period correct food.  I like PC food!! ;D  Well maybe, I like food! ::) ;D ;D
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Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2009, 01:06:15 pm »
Dr. Bob:

Here's another fascinating, albeit much too slender, booklet -
"Directions for Cooking by Troops, In Camp and Hospital, Prepared for the Army of Virginia and Published By Order of the Surgeon-General, With Essays on 'Taking Food' and 'What Food' by Florence Nightingale" (1861) - http://www.archive.org/details/directionsforcoo00nigh

For the War of 1812 time-frame, although not "army" cook books, you might find these of equal or greater interest -

"The Art of Cookery" (1802) - http://www.archive.org/details/artofcookerymade00moll2

"Receipts in Modern Cookery" (1806) - http://www.archive.org/details/culinafamulatri00huntgoog

"The Complete Confectioner" (1807) - http://www.archive.org/details/completeconfecti07nutt

"The Imperial and Royal Cook" (1809) - http://www.archive.org/details/imperialroyalcoo00nutt

"The Cook's Oracle": (1817) - http://www.archive.org/details/apiciusredivivu00kitcgoog

"Seventy-five Receipts for Pastry, Cakes, and Sweetmeats" (1830) - http://www.archive.org/details/seventyfiverece00leslgoog

Also, you 1812 types might perhaps have a use for these? -  ;D  - 

"General Regulations and Orders for the Army" (Adjutant General's Office, Horse-Guards, 1811) - http://www.archive.org/details/generalregulati01armygoog

"The Principles of War, Exhibited in the Practice of the Camp; and as Developed in a Series of General Orders of ... the Duke of Wellington ... in the Late Campaigns on the Peninsula" (1815) - http://www.archive.org/details/principlesofware00welliala






« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 01:31:00 pm by RattlesnakeJack »
Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier
Old West ClipArt & History Website:  http://rattlesnakejacks.com/

Offline Angel_Eyes

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2009, 01:53:41 pm »
Excuse me gents, but could you do the poor guys in the British Army a favor,,,,,SEND THE BOOK BACK!!!

I just knew they had lost something, I was enlisted from 1962-1973 and was convinced there had to be a proper cookbook, somewhere!! ;D ;D ;D

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Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2009, 02:10:33 pm »
Excuse me gents, but could you do the poor guys in the British Army a favor,,,,,SEND THE BOOK BACK!!!

I just knew they had lost something, I was enlisted from 1962-1973 and was convinced there had to be a proper cookbook, somewhere!! ;D ;D ;D

Yes ..... but have you actually read the recipes in it?  (See below ....)  :P   ;)
I suspect that the problem with current British Army cuisine is that they haven't changed anything since 1878!   ::)
(Actually I have a niece married to a British Army cook, currently stationed in Germany, who is a very nice chap ....  :) )
« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 02:15:11 pm by RattlesnakeJack »
Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier
Old West ClipArt & History Website:  http://rattlesnakejacks.com/

Offline Sir Charles deMouton-Black

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2009, 03:20:07 pm »
I was in Germany from 1967 to 1970.  We'd do about anything to avoid eating British army food.

Taking fresh steaks and veggies with us when attached to BAOR artillery units, and cooking them for ourselves where they could all smell the cooking and see us stuff ourselves;  PRICELESS!
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Offline Niederlander

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2009, 06:09:30 am »
Their field rations are pretty awful, too!  Pilchards in tomato sauce:  Yuck!  We loved working with the 7th Armored in the desert, but their food was pretty much criminal.  They loved trading for our rations until we figured out how bad theirs were.  It only took once!
"There go those Nebraskans, and all hell couldn't stop them!"

Offline Skeeter Lewis

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2009, 02:02:45 pm »
I remember, many years ago, as a cadet, having food poisoning half way up a mountain in a rainstorm from British Army rations.

Offline saddler

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Re: 1878 British Army cook book
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2009, 05:25:56 pm »
I've got an original WW1 British Army cookbook amongst my manual collection, but will check the website to see how the earlier one differs
Some of the stuff in the WW1 book sounds brilliant - may have to dig it out now to post examples

As an aside, I was at a Symposium at the Royal Armouries in Leeds a while back, and one of the snipers giving a talk said that "British Army cook" is the 3rd most difficult military qualification - after SAS at 1 and Sniper at 2....
He had this theory, as after several years on active duty he'd yet to meet any b*****d from the Catering Corps that could have passed the course