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Saturday, 25 October 2014

Diet in 18th Century Western Europe

In 18th century Western Europe cookery and nutrition were improving as a result of the greater range of foodstuffs available. More vegetables and meat were being eaten as farming and preserving techniques got better and many new kinds of tropical fruits were being introduced from abroad.

French cuisine was influencing cooks throughout Europe who tried to enhance the taste of foods by using spices in a subtler way. For wealthy Europeans food and cookery had become an important part of their lives. They would compete against one another to employ the best cooks who produced new recipes and beautiful dishes that increased their employer’s social status.

In Britain venison was the superior meat. If a person could serve venison, it meant that he was of the highest social status. Only a very select group of wealthy people could afford fruit and many of the British feared uncooked fruit; they thought it would give the person who consumed it indigestion or even the plague.

Source Food For Thought by Ed Pearce

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