The accomplisht cook or, The art & mystery of cookery

By:  May, Robert ,
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Source: http://gutenberg.org

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TO you first, most worthy Artists, I acknowledg one of the chief Motives that made me to adventure this Volume to your Censures, hath been to testifie my gratitude to your experienced Society; nor could I omit to direct it to you, as it hath been my ambition, that you should be sensible of my Proficiency of Endeavours in this Art. To all honest well intending Men of our Profession, or others, this Book cannot but be acceptable, as it plainly and profitably discovers the Mystery of the whole Art; for which, though I may be envied by some that only value their private Interests above Posterity, and the publick good, yet God and my own Conscience would not permit me to bury these my Experiences with my Silver Hairs in the Grave: and that more especially, as the advantages of my Education hath raised me above the Ambitions of others, in the converse I have had with other Nations, who in this Art fall short of what I have known experimented by you my worthy Country men. Howsoever, the French by their Insinuations, not without enough of Ignorance, have bewitcht some of the Gallants of our Nation with Epigram Dishes, smoakt rather than drest, so strangely to captivate the Gusto, their Mushroom’d Experiences for Sauce rather than Diet, for the generality howsoever called A-la-mode, not worthy of being taken notice on. As I live in France, and had the Language and have been an eye-witness of their Cookeries as well, as a Peruser of their Manuscripts, and Printed Authors whatsoever I found good in them, I have inserted in this Volume. I do acknowledg my self not to be a little A4v beholding to the Italian and Spanish Treatises; though without my fosterage, and bringing up under the Generosities and Bounties of my Noble Patrons and Masters, I could never have arrived to this Experience. To be confined and limited to the narrowness of a Purse, is to want the Materials from which the Artist must gain his knowledge. Those Honourable Persons, my Lord Lumley, and others, with whom I have spent a part of my time, were such whose generous cost never weighed the Expence, so that they might arrive to that right and high esteem they had of their Gusto’s. Whosoever peruses this Volume shall find it amply exemplified in Dishes of such high prices, which only these Noblesses Hospitalities did reach to