William King's How To Eat (1698)
I'll teach what's choice, what plentiful, what waste,
And lead you thro' the various Maze of Taste.
The Edible Art
Unless some Sweetness at the Bottom lye,
Who cares for all the crinkling of the Pye?
The child who nightly to the larder skulks
Will grow a Belly of unwieldy Bulk.
Eat Beef or Pye-crust if you'd serious be.
A Shell-fish'll raise Venus from the Sea.
Some Sauces act as Friends, and others Foes:
The Roguish Mustard, dang'rous to the Nose.
May clouds of Pigeons round about thee fly
But condescend sometimes to make a Pye.
Where Love of Wealth and rusty Coin prevail,
What hopes of sugar'd Cakes or butter'd Ale?
In private draw your Poultry, clean your Tripe,
And from your Eels their slimy Substance wipe.
Many a Man who falls out with his Wife
With soft'ning Mead and Cheese-Cake ends the Strife.
May Beef with carrots and with brown Ale join
And may you knight, with knife, the bold Sir Loin.
If you like tasty snacks then have you try'd
A Turkey Poult, from Egg, in Batter fry'd?
Your guests possess big Stomachs, bigger Souls –
Prepare you Muttons swol'd, and Oxen whole.
Before you chop, to Paris you must go,
That you might taste French Soups, and Mushrooms know.
Crowd not your Table, let your Number be
Not more than sev'n, and never less than three.
In days of old, the food a soldier got:
Fowl, Bacon, Cabbage, Mutton, and what not.
A gentle Lamb has rhet'rick to plead:
She sees the knife, she intreats, and she bleeds.
The humorsome child will make great clutter
Till she has Windows on her Bread and Butter.
On Empire's gilt all Delicates are seen,
And what was Earth before becomes a rich Terrene.
Only the Mad lard Pork with Orange Peel –
Like garnishing Lamb with a Spitchcockt Eel!
If the huzzah-ing Mob on you prevail
Swell them with fat Beef soup and Stoop of Ale.
When sallading go out, fresh leaves to seek:
The poynant Water-grass or sav'ry Leek.
If Horace came as Cook, he'd soon rehearse
A labour'd Work, and every Dish a Verse.
Dessert is crown: let Creams incircl'd be
With swelling Fruit just ravish'd from the Tree.
"it will be naturally supposed that his poems were rather the amusements of idleness than the efforts of study" - Samuel Johnson
[#] William King's Art of Cookery (Google Books)
[#] Other etchings