Wednesday, November 12, 2008

My Little Wish Book!

I know that Sears is famous for their Christmas Wish Book but has become my little trove of treasures. My Wish List on has accumulated quite the titles over the last year and its newest addition if French Cooking in 10 Minutes. This little gem was written in 1930 and it has an undeniable charm. The book is filled with humour and wit and the common sense approach to life that is really refreshing to read. He advises you to cook soufflé potatoes only for your closest friends: in all likelihood, "either you will spoil the potatoes or you will spend your evening apologising for neglecting your guests". The author Edouard de Pomiane writes in an almost extinct verbal way, the way your Grandmother would teach you. Here is a sample from his book La Cuisine en Dix Minutes ou l'Adaptation au Rhythme moderne


Buy a dozen snails from a concientious tradesman, that is to say, a man who will use good butter for stuffing his snails. Arrange the twelve snails on a large fireproof dish. It is not as easy as it sounds. The opening of the shell must face upwards. Otherwise as soon as the butter melts it runs out of the shell and the snail becomes dry and tough. When you have arranged the shells properly, pour a little water into the dish. Put the dish on the fire for three or four minutes, just long enough to warm it. Then put it under the grill. In five to six minutes the butter has melted and the snails are hot. Eat them as long as they burn your fingers.

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