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ensis,"s to be hunt of
pervades them totally incompatible with the ease which gives a charm to biography. Some parts have considerable merit; for instance, the account of the Birmingham riots, and of Warburton and Hurd. The author appears to be an amiable and candid man; and, as he had every opportunity of acquiring authentic information, we have no doubt his work is entitled to full faith. We could very well have spared “the biographical notices of all the friends, pupils and contemporaries,” known and unknown, of Dr. Parr, which add more to the size and price than to the interest of the work.
In looking over the Parriana, we no longer wondered that Blomfield withdrew his subscription from Mr. Barker's edition of the Greek Stephanus, on account of the extraneous matter stuffed into it. It appears to be a bad imitation of a bad model, “ Philopatris Varvicensis," and, judging from this specimen of his ability, we may say to the editor, in the words of Horace, “ Non si te ruperis par eris."
We might submit to paying for a collection of notices of Dr. Parr, taken from newspapers and magazines, without corrections or explanations, which Mr. Barker, a pupil of the Doctor, could readily have given; but it is presuming on the good nature of the public to give us histories of Bell's Dreams, the Quarrels of Dugald Stewart and Mr. Fearne, &c. which have no possible connexion with the subject, and add one third more to the volume. A continuation of the Parriana is promised; but, if the forthcoming volume or volumes is to resemble the present one, we really think, that, like the pills in the “ Honey Moon," one's a dose.
We observe, in the Memoirs and Parriana, a number of words scattered about, which, a few years ago, were called Americanisms, such as grade, based, progressed ; and but a single glance evinced that both works are English manufacture. Indeed, we could not look at them, without sighing over the freckled paper and ricketty binding, to which we are condemned by the farfamed " American System.”
ART. VII.- The French Cook. By LOUIS EUSTACHE UDE.
Ci-devant Cook to Louis XVI. and the Earl of Sefton, and Steward to his late Royal Highness, the Duke of York. Bro. Carey & Lea. Philadelphia. 1828.
Cook to Louis XVI. and the Earl of Sefton!
“ And thou Dalhousie, the great God of War!
Lieutenant-Colonel to the Earl of Mar! Peace to the manes of Hannah Glasse and Mrs. Raffald: even the Domestic Cookery by a lady, is sunk in oblivion ;-the fair sex are now deprived of the command of their ancient domain, and yield it, however reluctantly, to male intruders. What satisfied Quin, that former prince of gastronomers, will no longer satisfy the modern Amphitryon of more refined palate ; and the chymistry of the kitchen, even as expounded by Dr. Kitchener, that oracle of the Bourgeoisie, is regarded as a science too profound for female intellects to comprehend. Indeed, we are not sure, that however recondité this science may be, no great credit would accrue to one of the fair sex who would wish to compose a sauce, avec laquelle on mangeroit sa grand-mère. Nor is it merely necessary for an English or American cook, in modern days, to be minutely skilled in the French language; he (for we dare not make lise of the feminine) must be acquainted with the domestic habits and tastes of all nations, as well as with the past and present customs of his own: nay, more, he must have a decided taste for, and apprehension of the trope, metaphor, allegory and simile of cookery; and its sublime effusions must be congenial to his habitual conceptions.
For instance, when a dish is to be dressed à la St. Menehould, or when he serves up his Cotelettes à la Maintenon, or a composition à la Richelieu-or when he condescends, by way of variety, to compose a sauce à la Robert, or borrows an idea from the Cuisine à la Bourgeoise-when he treats us à la Venitienne, or à l'Italienne-or even when, by way of variety, he honours the English kitchen hy a plumbuling, a Wouelche rebette ou Lapin Gallois, or a misies-paes, ou paté Anglais, what in English we vulgarly call a mince-pie; a bif-teak, with pommes de terre à l'Anglaise, dites mache-potetesse, (2 Beauvill, 119, 121, 213) in preference to the same or similar articles à la Lyonnaise, or à la Bretonne-more especially when they are to be washed down (not with the Regent's punch, which has not yet travelled orer to Paris, but) with the Ponge au Thé, or the Ponge à la Rhom, or à la Rac à l'Anglais, it is manifest, he must be au fait dans les mæurs et coutumes des nations dans les salles à manger et les Cuisines, not only of the by-gone times of his own country, but of the modern tastes and improvements of the civilized foreigners around him; it being well known that ruin punch and arrack punch are in great request among all the upper classes of society in England! Nor is the language of this sublime science less recherché ; putting in requisition, as we have seen, all the higher orders of intellect. A good cook must have his craniological indications unexceptionable: bis organs of upper and lower individuality, of causality, locality, time, order, constructiveness, strongly marked; nor less so, the organ of selfapprobation. Indeed, we doubt whether we ought to dispense with strongly-developed combativeness ; inasmuch as he must rule despotic master of his own domains, and over all his liege subjects therein. Destructiveness, is of the very essence of cookery; though it need not extend the savage propensities of former days, to the “Anthropophagi who each other eat,” or even to the later times, when the eye-lids of a fowl were sewed together, the feet of a turkey nailed to the floor ; when a goose was roasted alive, a pig whipped to death, or a bull tortured into fever by incessant baiting. Nor must he be less alive to the poetic and figurative phraseology of his art. He must have a tact for a puit d'amour, an Epigramme d'Agneau, or du Veau à la tomate; a Vol au Vent in each of its innumerable forms; a Coqutte au Velouté; or à Sauté à la Supreme, so distinctly and luminously eulogized by our author, M. Ude. “The beauty of a Sauté (says he, note to p. 7) is the perfection of its nicety!" An oracular decision that removes all doubt. In the same page, we are informed by our learned author, of new analogies and communities of language, with which we were not previously acquainted. Thus IX. Suetuise, Charlotte, of apples or fruit, apple fritures glazed, soufflées iniroton of apples, croquettes of rice, farcie d'abricots, croquettes of potatoes, panequets, are at once French and English: and bear the same names in Paris and in London-that is, we presume, in the Cuisine of Louis XVI. the Earl of Sefton, the Duke of York, and though last not least of this honourable society, the far-famed Mr. Crockford, the present Amphityron of gamblers, the protector and employer of Ude. In the fourth number of the American Quarterly, the very learned author of a paper on the Cookery of the Ancients, informs us, that in the age of culinary extravagance at Rome, a good cook would command four thousand dollars a year. Mr. Crockford, we believe, pays M. Ude at the rate of fifteen hundred pounds sterling. No wonder of what moment are the duties of our Secretary of State, or Secretary of the Treasury, compared to the arduous enterprizes of such a superintendent of the kitchen ; one who does not, like our mushroom politicians, become, by sudden intuition, without years of anxious labour, so perfectly au fait in all the sublime mysteries of his art. What are the whipt-syllabub speeches of our great dinner orators, to the exquisite productions of M. Ude?-who never excites the lips and the tongue to action, without producing unspeakable gratifcation ! Indeed, what is a Sauté à la Supreme, but “to spatch a grace beyond the rules of art ?" And what, indeed. are the speeches of our congressional representatives generally, but an inferior kind of Vol au Vent? And what are the ultimate results of their respective performances, but an humiliating commentary on the moral maxim, sedem properamus ad unam, bound to the same office, worshipping at the same temple of ancient renown;
Vanus uterque labor ; namque huic debebitur ædi,
Sive quid orator, seu coquus arte parat. It seems necessary also, that a cook should be a good phygician, and competent to correct the errors of medical men. Thus M. Ude observes :
“ Many persons, but particularly medical practitioners, have, from time immemorial, been the declared enemies of cooks and cookery. The determination of the latter [? cooks] to keep mankind under their despotic domination, has engaged them in a perpetual war fare against whatever might oppose their peculiar interests. But the author will dare affirm, that good cookery, so far from possessing any deleterious tendency is, on the contrary, highly conducive to the preservation of health, inasmuch as it protects the appetite against the disadvantageous monotony of plain food. ** The author, therefore, (p. xxvii.) would recommend à skilfully dressed dish, as in all respects more salubrious than simple fare. He does not mean to deny that a plainly roasted joint, well-done, is food of easy digestion; but he peremptorily proscribes all salted and under-done provisions. Pork, in whatever way it may be dressed, is always unwholesome.”
All this may be sound doctrine; but it will not pass as such in our medical schools, or at a southern dinner; and, if we may be permitted to judge according to our own feelings and erperience, even this would be Homer of cooks may nod sometimes.
As we proceed, however, we regret to find some confusion in our author's directions and definitions. Thus marquer, to mark; is 1st. To put or prepare, (p. vii.) 2ly. Mark, a French term which signifies, that all the ingredients requisite are to be put into a stock-pot. 3ly. (p. 7.) Mark, must be understood as a
term to put in all the requisite articles. 4ly. (p.4.) Mark, means to make each consommé with the trimmings of either game or fowl. 5ly. (Same page.) “ Mark, the various consommés with the bones and trimmings of rabbits.” However, the little nicety of plain and distinct meaning, and intelligible description, may very well be dispensed with in a book and in a writer of so much importance in other respects; we are not to exact too much. Yet, there are so many passages that require a commentator, that if one of the editors of a classic of two centuries past, had been employed on Mr. Ude's book, (such for instance as Peter Burman, the immortal commentator on Petronius,) we should have had an explanatory edition in ten quarto volumes. Thus to us, who are desirous that all the directions of this sublime science should be intelligible to its humble amateurs, the following recipe is not quite so plain as might be wished. (p. 249.) “ Members of duck, with the purèe of lentils.” “Poele the members as directed in No. 1. Drain them; and mask them with purèe of lentils.” (See Purèe of Lentils.) Now, we should have been pleased, if M. Ude had informed us, Ist. What members of a duck are thus meant to be marked. 2ly. What is precisely meant by “poele them,” as directed in No. 1, where no definition or description of the process is given. Zly. Are they to be drained from any kind of broth ? 4ly. As mask includes all the requisite ingredients, what are they? 5ly. A purèe of lentils is not included in the index, althoug referred to.
In other places, the language is dreadfully ambiguous, thus : “Vive grillée," Sea-Dragon. Sea-Dragon is a fish that is seldom eaten in England, although in France, it is frequently sent up to table. Toward the gills, there is a most venomous bone. We always boil it, [the bone ?] and serve up with butter of anchovies, à la maitre d'hotel, or à la provencale.” Mistakes like this, we are not inclined to treat with levity. Sometimes, as it appears to us, much pains are taken to direct us how to spoil a good dish, as in potatoes à la maitre d'hotel, fried potatoes, croquettes of potatoes, green peas, à la paysanne, where they are directed to be stewed with cabbage, lettuce, parsley and onions. How any mortal with a palate, can conceive that stewing peas and cabbage together can improve them, we know not. Many of his dishes are so vulgar, as to belong to the poorest table only ; as his muscles and his ray-fish. Sometimes his directions savour a little of hocus-pocus, as the various kinds of fromage, in which cheese is an ingredient quite out of the question. There are ices of various composition, so named, not in conformity with any analogy of language, nor dictated either by elegance or taste. To call a dish of high price and exquisite flavour, by