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About the Author: Peter Brears

Peter Brears was director of both York and Leeds' City Museums, is a consultant to the National Trust, English Heritage, the Historic Royal Palaces, the winner of numerous prizes including the André Simon award for his book, Cooking and Dining in Medieval England, the standard text on the subject, and Britain's leading authority on jelly. He has written extensively on traditional foods and cookery in Yorkshire, as well as a groundbreaking illustrated catalogue of domestic and farmhouse materials in Torquay Museum. He supervised the reconstruction of several important historical kitchens, including those at Hampton Court, Ham House, Cowdray Castle and Belvoir Castle.

Cooking and Dining in Tudor and Early Stuart England Cover Image

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Goodreads rating: 4.75

Hardcover, Published in Feb 2015 by Prospect Books

ISBN10: 1909248320 | ISBN13: 9781909248328

Page count: 670

What is unique about Brears’ book is that he combines an account of the cookery with a close look at the practical arrangements, the kitchens and dining halls, where that food was cooked and consumed. His prose is enlivened by his drawings – as accurate as can be – which lay bare to the modern reader just what was going on in places like Hampton Court palace, as well as in humbler homes throughout the land. There are plenty of recipes for those who like to try things for themselves, all properly tested by the author, who is a historic food consultant to TV and country house owners. The era begins with the near medieval styles of Henry VII and VIII, with special attention to Henry VIII’s propagandizing banquets and feasts for foreign monarchs; progresses to the reign of Elizabeth, the effects of new foodstuffs from America, and treats some the great houses of the Tudor aristocracy; and finishes with the first two Stuart kings, James I and Charles I under whose rule we began to move towards a more modern style of cooking and when we also started to produce cookery books in large number.

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