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The Unofficial Downton Abbey Cookbook

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  622 ratings  ·  105 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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Average rating 3.76  · 
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 ·  622 ratings  ·  105 reviews

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Dec 30, 2012 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
May 05, 2013 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
Oct 15, 2012 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. ...more
Becky R.
Oct 23, 2012 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
Naomi Young
May 10, 2013 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
Feb 03, 2016 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. ...more
Dec 29, 2014 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". ...more
Anne Twiss
Jan 28, 2020 rated it liked it
I actually tried three recipes from this book and they turned out very nicely. The treacle tart was especially good and was a hit at my English themed book club get-together. The cucumber sandwiches were ok, the flaw in the directions was they didn’t say where to put the finely chopped cukes, and I just mixed them in with the cream cheese and mayo. The Cornish Pasties I made were very good with a leftover beef roast and spuds. My crust was all butter, no lard, a wise choice I believe. I ignored ...more
Mar 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have wanted to see Downton Abbey for a long time. I plan on binge watching it soon though.

Until then, I picked up this book for a peek at the foods served in the series. There were some interesting items in here - some I would eat, some I would not, but then that's true of any cookbook. I mostly enjoyed the tidbits about the program included with some of the recipes. I think I will enjoy it more after I get to see the series.
Dec 31, 2014 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
Jan 04, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: home
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
Joanne Wiggins
Sep 22, 2012 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. ...more
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While I enjoy cooking and reading recipes that are outside of my norm. These recipes contained things I was unable to find at my local grocery store. How many stores do you know have duck in the meat section. There were no images of the recipes so I was unsure of how they would look afterwards which helps me decide on what meals to make and helps my boyfriend accept new foods lol. I expected a little more from this cookbook and was a little disappointed, but I will try some of the recipes that I ...more
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cooking-baking
This cookbook is kept very simple without any pictures. The majority didn't sound appealing and in some cases outright gross such as the Mock Turtle Soup that calls for 1 calf's head. There are many classic recipes such as Meatless Mince Pie, Colcannon, Bubble and Squeak, Yorkshire Pudding or Black Pudding which are also the kind of dishes that would have been served in the servants quarters and would be my choice of dishes rather than most of the main courses for the aristocratic families. ...more
Urvi Shah
Mar 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
An interesting book that showcases the foods that were made at Downton Abbey. It’s obviously more meat-based with traditional English dishes, especially from that era, but it also has a few interesting vegetarian dishes that I could see myself trying.

If you’re a fan of the show, you’ll find the blurbs about the dishes and preps interesting as it is based entirely on what all characters in the show ate during various meals.
Mar 09, 2020 rated it did not like it
Firstly, I LOVE Downton Abbey. It is not anything against the recipes except that I can't fathom eating some of the things they used to back then (my taste is so different). So I didn't find that I would actually be cooking but one or two things. For the novelty of it - it is great. Or, if you are adventuresome or enjoy that style of food that it is right up your alley. ...more
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was ok
It was fun to see what one of my favorite tv shows might possibly make during that time period. I'm not so sure I would actually try most of the recipes. ...more
May 02, 2020 rated it it was ok
The recipes are absurd. This book is a novelty but I won't cook anything out of it. ...more
Rene M. Lafayette
Dec 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed reading this cookbook for several reasons. From a technical point it was straight forward and the recipes were not terribly complicated. Historically, I enjoyed the insight into the late Victorian/Edwardian periods. The footnotes were well considered as well.
Sandra - ReadsbytheSea
I loved the recipes but I don’t think they’re are very practical for my lifestyle. If you were having a theme party and wanted to make these on special occasion though, this is the book! Love downtown! 😍
Barry Huddleston
Feb 08, 2013 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 12, 2014 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
Jan 07, 2013 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
Jan 08, 2013 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 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 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 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
Jan 06, 2013 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
Katrina Sutton
Jan 07, 2013 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
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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

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