A variety of different social, economic and cultural conditions were responsible for the interest in gastronomy in nineteenth century France. This interest (in gastronomy) contributed to the emergence of gastronomic writing, which not only fed from, but also fueled and became an integral part of this new 19thcentury trend.
In the 19thnineteenth century in Western Europe particularly France, the way the higher social classes dined changed dramatically. There was movement away from the dining style of Service à la française into a more diner friendly style of service known as Service à la russe. This gradual change is of gastronomic significance in that it altered the way society perceived food and the role of the cook who also at that time became known as the Chef.
When the common question of country and food association is raised and the country in question is Scotland, two foods typically spring to mind – porridge and haggis. While these two foods converge at one end of the food spectrum, in that oats (in the form of pin-head oatmeal) are a primary constituent of Haggis; at the other they have diverged to a significant degree.
Ann Hope succinctly describes this divergence in Caledonian Feast – “Strange that, while porridge was easily accepted throughout the British Empire – some would say it as an integral part – haggis remains a curiosity outside of Scotland, an unfamiliar object which calls forth defensive ribaldry in its own country”
If you visit one of the many farmers markets in the western world you are bound to come across at least one of them. They could be driving a Range Rover looking for a wild pheasant for a BBQ, or they could be a tattoo-smothered biker casing ingredients for a biscuit recipe.
They are bound to be taking photos on their phone, coffee or organic chai latte in hand, probably sporting a hangover from visiting a ‘too cool for school’ sake or wine bar the night before. They are out there. Like an edible mold, the food movement is creeping around the world and gaining followers wherever it goes.
Super star chefs saturate the media. Kids as young as 14 are on TV, boning knife in hand showing us how to strip a bull carcass. If it’s naturally line caught, vine ripened, organically grass and walnut fed, free rang and locally grown – then it is a hit.