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The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook

3.71  ·  Rating Details ·  454 Ratings  ·  92 Reviews
Nibble on Sybil's Ginger Nut Biscuits during tea. Treat yourself to Ethel's Beloved Crepes Suzette. Feast on Mr. Bates' Chicken and Mushroom Pie with a room full of guests. With this collection of delicacies inspired by Emmy Award?winning series Downton Abbey, you'll feel as sophisticated and poised as the men and women of Downton when you prepare these upstairs and downst ...more
Hardcover, 254 pages
Published September 18th 2012 by Adams Media (first published June 1st 2012)
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(showing 1-30)
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Dec 30, 2012 May rated it it was ok
Shelves: cookbooks, read-2012
While I don't expect to find Downton Abbey trivia or production stills from the series in this book, I do expect to find at least several PICTURES of recipes from a cookbook. While these recipes look inviting and quite simple in some cases, the lack of photos makes this a very dull looking cookbook. Apparently all you need to do is take some classic British recipes and add a Downton Abbey character to it's title so fans of the show will buy this cookbook with hopes of finding more but will ended ...more
Oct 07, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was ok
Shelves: library-books
This book contained some interesting recipes, and I don't doubt that they would be most delicious. The main reason that I rated the book so low was because it is very loosely related to Downton Abbey. The only things that connect the two are (some) period appropriate recipes, and others that are named after characters from the program. It seemed to me like the author was just trying to cash in on the success of Downton.
May 05, 2013 Desiree rated it did not like it
There were numerous things I hated about the book, and a few that I like. I enjoyed the little snippets of etiquette lessons as well as the history lessons on each page, but I was not enchanted by many of the recipes. I probably only bookmarked about 30 out of the 150 there were. I also love reading cookbooks and looking at the pictures, which there are none, which I find a bit of a rip off. There a lot of typos, which I'm sorry if it's snobbish, I expect a book to have perfect grammar if it's b ...more
Feb 03, 2016 Sallee rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Found this book delightful and the recipes unusual to our current times. There were several that I will try as they are simple to make. The recipes are for both "upstairs" and "downstairs". It was fun to read all the accompanying information on the etiquette of those times and the rules that insured that a stately home ran smoothly.
Naomi Young
May 26, 2013 Naomi Young rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, aclib, 2013
I read cookbooks the way some women read romance novels -- to have a pleasant fantasy about things I cannot actually imagine DOING.

This is a just-barely-not-shameless attempt to cash in on the popularity of Downton Abbey by collecting authentic (? -- I assume but I don't know) Edwardian recipes, sorting them into two sections for the family and the servants, and then dividing the larger family section into the courses of the "service a la Russe" popular at the time of the series.

Each recipe is
Jun 12, 2015 Kate rated it it was ok
Three stars for the recipes but my, how odd this book is. There are so many exclamation marks! And weird insistent ties to episodes! Although, I could swear some of the ties are to Upstairs Downstairs (although the series so often lifts plots from UD it's tough to say.) Some of the historical notes are interesting and others are...wrong. Editor missing, I think, because weird statements about Escoffier being the most famed chef of the 21st century are more typos than inaccuracies, but there are ...more
Danielle Hartzler
Mar 21, 2013 Danielle Hartzler rated it liked it
Shelves: contest
First, I won this from Goodread's First Reads.

This book is a great time period cookbook. It gives the reader some insight into a time long passed. It shows the disparity of upstairs and downstairs meals. I would have liked to see photos of the finished products, as it is marketed as a cookbook. I do like that the author modernized the dishes to meet with today's availability of food.

This book however really has nothing to do with Downton Abby. The characters names were used more as a tool to d
May 24, 2015 Kirk rated it liked it
Shelves: abbey-of-downton
This might have been a two star but for the mention of Mr. Mason under Yorkshire Pudding! As a Mr. Mason super fan(Facebook and Twitter)....I overjoyed he received a mention. The recipes are too difficult for this simple "farmer".
Joanne Wiggins
Sep 22, 2012 Joanne Wiggins rated it it was ok
Shelves: cooking
It's okay but mostly just a compiliation of English/Irish/Scottish recipes. No connection whatsoever to the program.
Debra Williams

The recipes are readily available on many cooking websites. The etiquette tips were fun. I wish there was a link to download the recipes.
Alice Ball
Jan 17, 2017 Alice Ball rated it really liked it
Shelves: coobooks
I love the downstairs recipes! Especially recommend the shepherd's pie.
Oct 17, 2016 V rated it liked it
Very entertaining snippets about how these recipes fit into the show along with etiquette for all. I found 4 recipes out of the whole book that I will try, most are quite detailed and/or require ingredients I may not be able to procure locally. A fun read.
Becky R.
Oct 23, 2012 Becky R. rated it really liked it
Set up in a pretty classic fashion, this cookbook is minus the glossy pictures we expect today. In the post-Edwardian era, the cooking was an interestingly sauced bunch of meats and "veg," with puddings and pastries for dessert and tea. The contents of the book are separated into two parts: Part 1, "Dining With the Crawleys"; and Part 2, "Sustenance for the Staff". From there, the book is separated into twelve chapters--eight for the Crawleys and three for the staff.

One of the things that I foun
Barry Huddleston
Feb 08, 2013 Barry Huddleston rated it really liked it
I love the show Downton Abbey. When I first picked up this book, I expected it to be a collection of recipes of the show’s era. The cookbook, I believed, would be for little more than entertainment value. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the recipes were updated for modern ingredients, modern techniques, and modern palates. I think the book will be something that steampunks, Neo-Victorians, and Downton Abbey fans can embrace.

The book is broken into two sections with the first eight chapter
Suzie the Foodie
Dec 29, 2014 Suzie the Foodie rated it it was ok
I made the Creamless Steak au Poivre and it was delicious but the Hollandaise Sauce was so salty, it was almost inedible and the Spinach and Feta Salad with Fresh Beetroot was horrid. Feta and beets do not go together. Goat cheese, however, would have been fine.

This cookbook is not consistent. I want to believe in it. I want to feel that it is accurate to the time period but frozen orange concentrate? If the flavours had worked I could forgive it but after this crappy salad, I was done. I could
Mar 31, 2013 dsneaks rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
I received The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook by Emily Ansara Baines for free through Good Reads First Reads giveaways. This cookbook is GREAT, I made some of the recipes for a few people and they loved them and kept asking me to make more. I have had many people asked to borrow the book for the recipes and run out and buy copies of their own. These are just based upon the recipes and many of them are not fans of Downton Abbey. Personally as a fan of the show I loved the recipes and the other ...more
Jul 02, 2016 Tima rated it liked it
Shelves: food
Filled with over 150 recipes from both downstairs and upstairs this book will be a favorite among Downton Abbey fans. The book begins with a little bit of history about the differences between recipes upstairs and downstairs. It is then divided into the different courses that would have been served at a typical Downton meal. This is followed by recipes for tea time and then the downstairs meals that would have been served at various times.

I'll be perfectly honest - I will probably never use the
Terri Lynn
Nov 25, 2014 Terri Lynn rated it liked it
I love Downton Abbey! This is the 2012 edition of the book. There are quite a few pretentious recipes for disgusting food. The good stuff doesn't begin until chapter 7 where we find the sweets and desserts. Oh my, there are Dark Desires Chocolate Cake, Creamy Chocolate Mousse, The Dowager Countess' Dark Chocolate Truffles, Sir Anthony's Apple Charlotte, Fancy French Meringues, Mrs. Patmore's Extravagant Parisian Eclairs, English Trifle,Raspberry Meringue Pie, Dark Chocolate Bread Pudding With Sa ...more
Catherine Gillespie
Feb 09, 2015 Catherine Gillespie rated it it was ok
As a fan of the PBS series Downton Abbey, I really and truly wanted to love The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook. After all, quite a lot of the series takes place in the dining room or during tea, and I love to read about different culinary traditions. However, the book seemed a little slapped together, didn’t have a lot to do with the show, and had some painfully contrived recipe intros that left me a little disappointed.

It was interesting to learn a bit about the way food was served (and I do
The book contains recipes for food likely eaten by the upper and serving classes of folks in the time period in which Downton Abbey is set. Interspersed are trivia about the time period and etiquette of the day.

I enjoyed the ride of these recipes, but doubt I will actually cook any of them. I don't cook fancy dinners that often and many of the recipes called for ingredients that I either wouldn't have around the house (wine, brandy, special spices) or seem impossible to come by (turtle meat, cal
Apr 14, 2013 Christina rated it did not like it
Shelves: cookbook
I bought this as a gift for a friend who very much enjoyed the show and is also a goodie. While the book maybe fun to look at and read, cooking anything from it seems to yield rather strange food. My bookclub (who likes the show) decided to have a tea party based on the recipes in the book. Each person took a recipe and prepared it. I had the shortbread. I followed the directions faithfully, start to finish---even letting the eggs sit out to warm them up to room temp. The result was nothing I wo ...more
Alice Wu
Mar 18, 2013 Alice Wu rated it really liked it
I won this book from the giveaway a few months ago and didn't get around to trying some of the recipes until now. What I love about this recipe book is the little snippets of information that the author has added to give some background on the dishes. It's a shame there are no pictures, but the entire design of the book reminds me of what a cookbook back then might've actually looked like. Another upside to this book is the separation between upper class and servants' foods and the different cou ...more
Dec 27, 2015 Catherine rated it liked it
I wouldn't actually cook anything in this cookbook (most recipes had way too many ingredients, a lot of which I don't keep on hand) but what was interesting about it was that the author included interesting etiquette tidbits and historical facts from that time period. What I could've done without is her comparison of when some of the Downton Abbey characters may have eaten some of these foods. It was like they were real people or something. For example, the author says about one recipe, "Even th ...more
Apr 13, 2013 Kristen rated it really liked it
I enjoy reading cookbooks, especially ones with interesting stories and/or anecdotes. As a Downton Abbey lover, too, this book is an excellent addition to my collection.

As other reviewers have noted, Ms. Baines does not include glossy photos of the included recipes, but I did not find that omission to detract from the value of the book. Anecdotes from the popular BBC series are included alongside the Edwardian-era recipes. While the recipes are heavy and may not make a regular appearance at my
I won this from a goodreads First Reads giveaway! I like it! The recipes are organized by courses and each recipe has a sweet little blurb/anecdote to go along with it such as telling us that the Traditional Bakewell Tart would be served to both the nobility as well as the servants since it is a traditional dessert. Some of the recipes have an additional little paragraph with a bit of history/legend regarding the food item.

There are no high gloss pictures of foods prepared; rather, this is a ga
Katrina Sutton
Jul 14, 2013 Katrina Sutton rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads-won
*Good Reads Winner*
The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook sounds delightful!
I can't wait until it arrives so I can try out the recipes. :)

I was pretty excited to have won my first cookbook and when I opened the package, I could not wait to look through it. What I found was a lovely layout free of images and also easy to understand. I love the subtle ornamental elements and the type hierarchy that kept the ingredients in it’s own column and the steps in another for each recipe. What is also great
Nov 09, 2014 Babs rated it liked it
A delightful read on a rainy afternoon while your own delicious dinner is cooking away. It will make you grateful not to be in Mrs. Patmore's shoes preparing all those courses!

To give you an idea of the book's range, it includes the simplicity of Noisette Potatoes to savory and sweet treats for an afternoon tea. And, covers 8+ courses showcasing different dishes within each course.

Enjoyed perusing the etiquette lessons rarely seen and long forgotten. If you are a scratch cook, the base ingredi
Liss Capello
Feb 11, 2014 Liss Capello rated it it was ok
For full disclosure, I didn't actually make any if the recipes in this book. They might have been really good! I don't know. I found the book in need of some significant editing, both for typos and to reel in the cheesy attempt to link every single recipe to the characters from the show in some way. Just tell me more about Edwardian cuisine, please. I also found it off-putting that so many of the recipes relied on extremely modern ingredients, like cheesecake pudding mix and frozen puff pastry. ...more
This expired from nypl before I had a chance to finish it.

The recipes were fun to read, and the "Etiquette Lessons" even better.

Some of the introductory paragraphs (to each recipe) were a bit hokey. See excerpt:

Lady Mary's Crab Canapes

While the Countess of Grantham might offer the Potatoes with Caviar and Crème Fraiche or her eponymous Moules en Sauce, she would likely offer more than one appetizer, including these delicious yet light crab canapés. However, Lady Mary, upon learning her entire i
Audrey Grant
Mar 26, 2013 Audrey Grant rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, won, historical, cookbook

What a lovely book! In more ways than one! I love that it is very English looking in the art plate used on the front! No skimping in a nice hard back to boot! Another sign of a quality British book!

The recipes sound just like the ones the at we used to wonder when we read as children if they REALLY ate things like that over there!

They do and now I
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Emily Ansara Baines is the author of two cookbooks: The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook and The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook. She has also worked as a professional baker and caterer throughout the East Coast, most recently in New York City.

She he graduated with honors from the University of Southern California where she studied creative writing under Aimee Bender and T.C. Boyle. Her short st
More about Emily Ansara Baines...

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