The Fifth Edition of the Glasgow Cookery Book (1919)

Published nine years after the first edition, the recipes in the fifth edition are somewhat different to those in the first edition. There are 24 recipes in the fifth edition compared to 23 in the first. Some of the differences between the two books are just down to the ordering of the recipes in the cookbook, whereas some recipes are missing, and some are new, like the ‘Milk Toast’ recipe that comes at the end of the fifth edition.  This recipe called for three slices of toast to be covered with a cup of boiling hot ‘rich milk’, seasoned with a saltspoonful of salt.

The recipes of the fifth edition are ordered as follows, with the recipes in bold marking ones that appeared in the first edition of the Glasgow Cookery Book:

  1. Beef Tea (Slow Way)
  2. Beef Tea (Quick Way)
  3. Raw Beef Tea
  4. Beef Essence
  5. Invalid Mutton Broth
  6. Chicken Jelly  
  7. Raw Beef Sandwiches 
  8. Steamed Filleted Fish (Sole, Plaice, Whiting, etc)
  9. Minced Chop (Steamed)  
  10. Lemonade
  11. Apple Water
  12. Toast Water
  13. Beef Tea Custard
  14. Gruel 
  15. Linseed Tea
  16. Egg Flip
  17. Irish Moss Jelly
  18. Sago Cream
  19. Breadberry
  20. Invalid Jelly
  21. Cup of Arrowroot and Arrowroot Pudding
  22. Wine Whey  
  23. Chicken Panada 
  24. Milk Toast 

Eighteen recipes have been transferred from the first to the fifth edition, and presumably these recipes were also in the second, third, and fourth editions too. Some of the recipes have slightly different titles: ‘Meat Essence’ becomes ‘Beef Essence’, and ‘Arrowroot Pudding’ becomes ‘Cup of Arrowroot and Arrowroot Pudding’. The content of the recipes has stayed the same, however, and those these choices are centred around the presentation of the text rather than the dishes described. Some of the recipes are slightly tweaked, so that the ‘Grilled Chop’ from the first edition is a ‘Minced Chop (Steamed)’ in the fifth. ‘Barley Water’, ‘Baked Custard’ and ‘Custard (Steamed)’ were three recipes that didn’t make it from the first edition. 

You’ll also notice that many of the recipes in the 1919 edition that have been brought forward from the first edition are arranged in a different order. In the Invalid Cookery chapter of the fifth edition, the three beef tea recipes are no longer found amongst other beverages like ‘Lemonade’ and ‘Apple Water’, but instead they open the chapter alongside the ‘Beef Essence’. This ordering is more in line with cookbooks like Black’s Household Cookery, as well as Plain Cookery Recipes, a pamphlet published by the GWSCDS in 1911 which also opens with three beef-based recipes: ‘Beef Tea Custard’, ‘Beef Tea’ and ‘Beef Tea (A Quick Way)’. Beef tea is therefore at the forefront of the chapter in the fifth edition, and just as in the earlier cookbooks published in Glasgow, these recipes are the first that readers come across when they turn to the section on invalid cookery. This corresponds with the beverage’s important place in invalid cookery, which you can read more about in regard to Margaret Black’s writing here.

In general, the ordering of recipes in the fifth edition seems more logical than the ordering in the first. Starting with the all-important beef tea, the chapter moves to meat-based dishes that would constitute the main part of a meal, before turning to beverages, and then puddings and dishes like ‘Gruel’ or ‘Chicken Panada’ that were either sweet, or would have been eaten as part of a lighter diet given their soft texture. In contrast to the sequencing of recipes in the fifth edition, the first edition does not seem to follow any ordering principle. More substantial dishes like ‘Grilled Chop’ and ‘Steamed Whiting’ are separated in the 1910 text from other similar recipes like ‘Steamed Filleted Fish’ (indeed, the fifth edition has amalgamated these two fish recipes into one for clarity, which saved room and the need for repetition).  

From the ordering of the recipes, it therefore seems that more thought has been put into the organisation and structuring of the cookbook between subsequent editions. The recipes are largely consistent between these two texts, however, and the ingredients familiar to invalid cookery can be traced throughout: milk, eggs, arrowroot, sago, etc. These recurring recipes speak to a consistency around the practice of invalid cookery which is explored in reference to other Glaswegian cookbooks hereand the recipes seemingly stood the test of time between these early editions of the Glasgow Cookery Book.

Turning to some of the new recipes in this edition is illuminating. Chicken Panada was a sort of soup made from cooked chicken meat and bread, that was ‘the consistency of a thick gruel’. This texture is presumably why the Panada was not included earlier in the chapter with the other meat dishes: rather than a more substantial main course, it was to be eaten as a soft, but protein rich, meal replacement.

Indeed, it is interesting that the fifth edition contains two chicken-based recipes (Chicken Panada and Chicken Jelly), whereas the first did not mention chicken at all. Chicken was a common meat to consume in Scotland for centuries before the publication of the Glasgow Cookery Book, and there’s a very long history of people keeping chickens both rurally and in the city for their eggs and meat. The fact that chicken was included in the 1919 edition and not the 1910 edition may have indicated that chicken was lower in price or more readily available, or simply that new invalid recipes had come into the cookery school’s repertoire and were reflected in print. 

The gallery above also shows that this edition contained a wealth of personal, handwritten recipes and newspaper clippings collected by the book’s owner. Some of these recipes show a distinct interest in health and remedies. Underneath the short hand practice in the first picture are directions for an ankle massage, while the next two pictures have recipes for a poultice and a rheumatism cure. The owner of this cookbook clearly used recipes not just for the preparation of food, but also for homemade remedies that could be applied to the outside of the body as well as consumed. The interconnections between food, health and recipes are therefore visible in both the printed matter of this edition of the GCB, and in the handwritten material it contains.

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