I’m enjoying consulting the little National Mark cookery book I came across; I think I must have acquired it at a second-hand bookshop I certainly didn’t inherit it from my mum or my mother-in-law. The National Mark was set up in the 1930’s to try and regulate food production and ensure that people were able to buy fruit and vegetables (including bottled and canned), meat dairy and other produce of a good standard and quality.
This little book of over two hundred recipes is organised as a calendar of cooking; at the start of each of the twelve chapters there is a list of fruit and vegetables in season:
- Brussel sprouts
- chicory (witloof)
- Jerusalem artichokes
- mustard and cress
- Savoy cabbage
- Scotch kale
- seakale (forced)
There are twelve recipes, including oxtail soup, fillets of beef Pompadour, Brussel sprouts au gratin, cold cheese creams and duchy toasts. I am going to try cooking some of these… and I will share the results with you!
What strokes me about these recipes is that they are practical, imaginative and wholesome; the writers, Ambrose Heath and Mrs Cottington Taylor seem to be as keen to get ordinary people (in this case housewives!!) cooking with an eye to their purses as well as the health of their families… very much as cookery and food writers are today, some eighty years later!