Monks have discovered a 200 year old curry recipe in a cook book in Somerset
The cook book, dating back to 1793, contains one of the first ever mentions of curry in England.
Similar to a modern cooking book, the document unearthed in the library of Downside Abbey was used to make a variety of dishes, including such culinary highlights as “calves head turtle fashion” and “fricassee of pigs feet and ears”.
The curry’s ingredients are a mix between spices that were common in the UK, like curry powder or sugar, and some rare seasonings, which came to Bristol via the slave trade triangle between Africa, Europe and the Americas.
Overall, the recipes found in the book are quite simple.
The book from 1793 boasts one of the earliest mentions of curry in England
After the list was painstakingly transcribed, the monks visited a nearby Michelin restaurant to see how world-class chefs would prepare the centuries-old dishes.
I think a lot of the chefs enjoyed how simple the recipes were to make
Frances Bircher, heritage officer
Frances Bircher, heritage officer at the abbey, said: "I think a lot of the chefs enjoyed how simple the recipes were to make."
People who would like to get a taste of the past will get a chance when the cooking book titled 'Downside Abbey Presents Bristol Georgian Cookbook' goes on sale.
The book will include original spellings and pictures of the handwritten script.
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The recipe is accompanied in the book by delights including ‘calves head turtle fashion’
The document unearthed in the library of Downside Abbey by monks
Mrs Birches said: "We have made a huge amount of different recipes and tasted them.
"There is a range of ingredients – there are things you can still pick up in supermarkets today, and there is a lot of veal which seems less acceptable.”