Cookery for Seamen.
QUINLAN Alexander &; MANN N.E. (1894.)
£950.00 [First Edition]
SAILORS SUPPERS - NUTRITION AT SEA
First edition. Square 12mo. Publisher's cloth-backed printed boards, toned, a little shaken, title also a little brown. 34, 34a, 34b, 35-75, [1ad]pp. Liverpool, C. Tinling & Co.,
Issued under the direction of the Committee of the Liverpool Training School of Cookery, this scarce work was designed to improve "the fare on board trading steamers and ships". It was a direct result of the cooking classes that had been established for seamen, who then wanted "a supply of recipes, a book form being preferred".
Although the importance of diet at sea was confirmed through the eradication of scurvy at the end of the eighteenth century, it wasn't until 1906 that the Board of Trade required any training was required to become a cook at sea. Of course, there were substantial concerns over maintaining the health of any crew, and morale also had to be maintained. This work, published a decade before the act, would have been a welcome addition onboard any vessel.
The book opens with instructions on the difference between, roasting, baking, frying and grilling etc, but becomes immediately more interesting with notes on keeping livestock onboard followed by a chapter on "The Killing and Dressing of Live Stock", which features pigs, sheep, bullock, and poultry. The recipes included here range from the luxurious "Curried Lobster" to the spartan "Gruel" and "Beef Tea", to the heroic "Sea Pie (for ten men)". There are also recipes designed specifically for invalids (custard, lemonade).
Nonetheless evidence that nutrition at sea was still somewhat in its infancy can be seen as the introduction divides food into three sections: flesh forming, heat-giving, and bone-making. It then states: "It may soon be decided which of these classes must be placed first in order of value, according to the changes of climate to which a seaman is subjected, and an intelligent cook will endeavour, with the materials at his command, to follow the necessity of the case in providing meals."
Scarce: OCLC locates eight copies.
Stock Code: 233733