{24/09/2010}   "The Kenya Settlers’ Cookery Book and Household Guide" 11th Edition 1951 – Eye-opening recipes, household tips and "Orders to Servants"!
My £2, taped together, pages falling out copy

I bought this book in July 2010 for £2.  It’s been a source of entertainment ever since.  It’s outrageous and shocking to read today.  Here’s part of the preface to set the scene:

“The first edition of this book, published in 1928, was compiled with the hope that it would prove of some assistance to newcomers to the Colony, to young or inexperienced housekeepers, and to bachelor settlers in Kenya, who must often find themselves obliged to put up with incompetency on the part of untrained native cooks or houseboys.”

Anyone fancy an egg experiment, as detailed in this book (This doesn’t appeal to me, particularly the toast soaked in milk aspect!):

Eggs Daisy
4 or 6 eggs
4 or 6 rounds of toast
salt and pepper
a little milk

Butter toast and place in oven.  Separate white and yolks of eggs and beat up whites until very light and stiff. Pile them on the slices of toast, which should be previously dipped in milk.  Make a hollow in the white and drop in the yolk of the egg.  Bake in quick oven till yolks are set and whites a light brown, dust with pepper and salt.  Serve very hot.

“Three Hints to Bachelors”:

“(1) Explain to your boy the danger of using damp bed linen and clothing, and see that after ironing, he airs all these in the sun, or by the fire, before putting them away in boxes or drawers.  Many an illness has been traced to carelessness in this matter.
“(2) Tell your boy that socks are not washed in the same way as khaki clothes, but must be washed in warm soapy water, rinsed in warm water, and hung up to dry.
“(3) Avoid chill as you would poison.  If you come in wet, have a hot bath at once, then put on dry clothing, and take 5 grains of quinine, with a hot drink, preferably tea or coffee.  Unless you can sit by a fire, go to bed and keep warm.”

Cure for hiccups:

“Drink 1/2 a teaspoonful of vinegar, and keep the arms in an upright position for a minute or so afterwards.”

“Orders to Servants”

Useful orders to servants (English – Ki-Swahili – Ki-Settler):

“Dust well, do not flick with the duster.”
“Every day the bwana wants hot water for shaving.”
“I do not allow strange boys near the house.”
“Make tea and bring it here now.”
“You are insolent!  You must look pleasant (or) pleased.”

Some Kikuyu sentences (many of which are put into idiom) to give orders:

“When you dig have a basket besides you, into which to put small stones which you find when digging.  Stones may stop a flower finding food or room for its roots.”
“Cut the edge straight like the top of a table.”
“Do not forget to give the poultry much water to drink every day.”

I got sidetracked looking through recipes.  I’m going to choose one, make it and see how it turns out.  Which of the following shall I go for:

Apple Balls, Delicate Cakes, Silver Cake, Lemon Queens or Apple Amber?

My first challenge is set!


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