The Dodo Book for Cooks

The Dodo Book for Cooks cover image

The Dodo Book for Cooks has surfaced a few times over the last few months. I keep pushing in the scribbled “weekly menu” that we create each week. The intention being that these menus will eventually be recorded in The Dodo Book for Cooks.

What I need to get over is writing in my book. That is, actually using the book.

The Dodo Book for Cooks is a souvenir from the Oxford University Museum of Natural History. Obtained when we ended up there as part of our History of Science Tour.

The subtitle is “Save your Recipes from Extinction”. It consists of chapters for each of the different parts of a meal or types of dishes, for example, Soups & Starters, Puddings, Fish, etc. Each chapter includes a card title page that includes a tab and pocket to save recipe clippings.

Each page includes a cartoon and or anecdote about food, dinner or company. The text and illustrations range from ‘oh hum’ to what I think is hilarious. For example, “Water’s all right, taken in the right spirit” attributed to Lord Dodo of Doodle. And, “Hors d’oeuvres have always had a pathetic interest for me; they remind me of one’s childhood that one goes through wondering what the next course is going to be like — and during the rest of the menu one wishes one had eaten more of the hors d’oeuvres.” — Saki. And, “I’m on a seafood diet — when I see food, I eat it!” Well I think they are funny. But then, I laugh at the jokes in the Children’s Corner of the Sunday paper ;-p

I plan not to fill it with recipes, but with references to recipes. H and I use a couple of favourite cookbooks and I don’t think it worthwhile to copy recipes into another book. Also, I think it is nice for cookbooks to be used and collect their own history, that is, splashes from ingredients or the cook’s prerogative wine.

Perhaps I’ll use pencil to start with …

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