You may not be able to return to the days of Jane Austen, to ball suppers and exquisite Regency manners. But for a weekend you can at least create the food an 18th Century cook would have cooked with the pots, pans and jelly moulds they would have used, and roast your ribs of beef on a spit turned by a clockwork jack.
If this appeals, sign up for a Historic Food weekend with Ivan Day at his farmhouse in the Lake District. We (or rather, mostly Ivan) cooked syllabubs, pork roasted in front of an open fire, and tamarind ice cream (tamarind readily available in the 18th Century, as were all kinds of herbs and spices).
We ground mustard seed in the authentic 18th Century way, by rolling a cannon ball on a board, and soaked up foodie info from Ivan – sponge fingers so named because, dipped into wine, they soak it up like a sponge.
The four rib joint of beef turned gently on the spit before being served with 18th Century batter pudding, to be followed by a kind of pancake pie with candied peel and wine.
And if you fancy learning about Victorian or Tudor food, how to bake a raised pie or make exquisite ice creams in moulds shaped as swans, baskets of fruit and flowers, asparagus, even an anarchist’s bomb - Ivan’s your man at www.historicfood.com.
For more titbits, join Pie Crust to Upper Crust, Ann’s next foodie walk on Saturday September 14, 10.45 at Embankment tube.
A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.