Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Darwin recipes for Christmas

Original recipes from the wife of Charles Darwin have been brought together in a new book to offer an insight into a Victorian Christmas. Mrs Charles Darwin’s Recipe Book by Dusha Bateson and Weslie Janeway includes 40 dishes from the notebooks of Emma Darwin, including Lady Skymaston’s pudding, cranberry sauce, and compote of apples and Italian cream. Cambridge University Library, which houses Emma Darwin’s original notebook in its archives, released the recipes to the authors. A proportion of the book sales will go towards the University’s Darwin Correspondence Project.

Dr Alison Pearn, assistant director at the Project, stated: ‘Darwin built up an impressive network of correspondents who provided him with data about plants, animals, and peoples from all over the world, and with whom he discussed his ideas as they were developing. The letters are a remarkable window onto his life and mind, and a chance to eavesdrop on conversations between some of the leading thinkers of the 19th century.’

See History Today articles on Charles Darwin at www.historytoday.com/Darwin

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