Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management
Scarce lithograph from “Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management,” which aimed to be a comprehensive guide of all aspects of running a household during the Victorian era in Britain. It was first published in 24 monthly parts from 1859 - 1861 by S. O. Beeton Publishing (founded by her husband) and it continued to be published after her death in 1865. With an emphasis on mainly food, Beeton’s goal was to provide men with such well-cooked food at home, that they would be sated enough to not eat at out at their clubs and dining-houses. Yet interestingly, it appears that Mrs. Beeton, like many British people of her social class, had no real experience in cooking. This is evident in passages where she suggests boiling pasta for an hour and forty-five minutes. She was the first to create a user friendly formula by listing ingredients and even estimated costs of each recipe, whereas earlier publications employed more a more complex style with dauntingly long and confusing paragraphs.