I had an interesting phone conversation with my aunt yesterday. She has been finding the recipes I share on this blog very hard to resist. It has been great fun showcasing some of the food of the Edwardian era, and finding ways to update them to suit a healthier lifestyle. I look for classics which can be lightened up, but for some of the Titanic desserts, the only option might be portion control.
Edwardian cookery is noteworthy because it personifies an era where extravagance was an art form and the formal dining room table its canvas. But somehow the women of Downton Abbey –with the exception of Mrs. Patmore–maintained their girlish figures. Corsets helped a great deal for the ladies who lived upstairs, and we can imagine how many calories were burned by the below stairs workers. Instinctively it seems, servants ate heartier meals for stamina, like a breakfast of steel cut oats (that was what we had this morning) which we now know helps fuel the body for the rest of the day.