Friday, 11 May 2012

Victorian Kitchens - Sepia Saturday

I try to keep out of the kitchen as every time I go in there I'm either given a job to do or I'm told I'm in the way. Nevertheless I've found a couple of kitchens that I hope will interest you.

The Victorian Kitchen, Dalgarven Mill, Ayrshire
The house where I was born had a Victorian kitchen; we had a black leaded grate similar to this and we still have a mixing bowl like the one on the table. However the floor was made of stone slabs which didn't exactly generate a warm feeling.

My second kitchen is located in Lincolnshire where I went to school.

Replica of a Victorian Kitchen at the Museum of Lincolnshire Life, Lincoln 2011
We had a chair just like that but our tin bath was kept and used in an outhouse with a coal-fired copper to heat the water. We didn't have the luxury of a water pumped into the kitchen like in this replica.. Our stone flag floors were soften by rugs like the one shown here made by pegging scraps of cloth to canvas sacking,

These two pictures brought memories back to me as did the video below. It runs for 30 minutes but I've hope you have the time to view it as the old pictures it contains are worth looking at. When you've watched it perhaps those of you who think 'those were the days' will have changed your minds.


This is the first of a series of videos about Victoria Kitchens of You tube)

For more kitchen utensils don't forget to check Sepia Saturday 125




Attributions:

  • The Victorian Kitchen, Dalgarven Mill, 2008; author Rosser1958 - Roger Griffith
  • Replica of a Victorian Kitchen, Museum of Lincolnshire Life 2011; author Green Lane; Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike  3.0 unported, 2.5. 2.0 and 1.0 Generic licenses.

25 comments:

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

Bob, these are wonderful photos and I enjoyed your memories. Too think of taking a bath in an old portable tub like that one!

I'll come back and watch the video soon.

Kathy M.

Little Nell said...

These are superb examples of kitchens as they were; so full of detail. I couldn’t get the video to work in situ so went along to You Tube to watch it. Of course it’s now bookmarked to watch the other episodes. I’d forgotten what a lovely gentle informative programme it was. Amazing to think it’s over 25 years since it was first aired. I’m still not sure about the kitchen ‘lore’ of the direction of which way to stir your stock!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Bob .. we certainly had some of those things - the coal or coke scuttles ring big bells .. always filling the boiler up, or the Aga - as we had an early one of those .. and those wonderful mixing bowls ..

Great pictures and good reminders - cheers Hilary

Karen S. said...

Okay, I confess I'm drawn to the kitchen! These of course are more the glad I don't have to work this hard! But they are very awesome to see, and I try to catch as many of these as possible. Thanks for the video too! I love learning things from these places, it seems every time I leave one I walk away with the knowledge of something new and interesting!

barbara and nancy said...

Hi Bob,
I loved watching that video. It was like watching an episode of Downton Abbey or Upstairs Downstairs. What they had to go through in those days. Those poor women.
And making that stock. Can you imagine?
Nancy

Jo said...

I still have a mixing bowl like that, best there are. Luckily never had to bathe in a tub, we always had a bathroom. Hubby did tho.

Carole Anne Carr said...

As I write children's books set in the early Victorian period I find your post fascinating.

Food Smarts said...

The video is terrific. I love the cook and the old techniques she was able to recreate. What a lot of work for a couple of bowls of consomme - three days! And the hazards of all that hot liquid transferred back and forth in huge, heavy pots. No place for sissies!! Oh, and I like the idea of rhubarb in vegetable soup.

Kristin said...

Very interesting video. I never realized how strong cooks and kitchen workers had to be!

Titania said...

Bob, I enjoyed to see the Victorian kitchens. the interesting part is your comments about your kitchen at home. I do not like the big, shiny kitchens they built in today. I have not yet watched the video, I will later. I really like cooking and being in my kitchen so I am interested how they managed in Victorian times.

Alan Burnett said...

I found I was doing the same as you when I looked at those pictures - saying "we used to have one of them". Indeed, I find myself saying that more and more these days as I go to museums. Perhaps I am getting old.

Wendy said...

"The good ol' days" - "The simple life" - HA! Who thought of those expressions? I like your connection of memories to images in the photos - very interesting.

Jo said...

What an absolutely fascinating video. I have a 1935 copy of a book by Mrs. Beeton. I think I know a lot about cooking, but I had never heard of tammying. I must check it out. If you don't mind I would love to borrow that video too use in my blog.

Jo said...

I would mention also, that in good kitchens, as in restaurants, stock is still made in much the same way. A good stock is essential to good cooking. I have made stock this way and used egg shells to clarify it.

Bob Scotney said...

Jo - there's a whole series of these videos available on Youtube; take your pick. Itwas from an old TV series I believe.

Postcardy said...

The video is great. It sure took a lot of work to make soup!

Sheila @ A Postcard a Day said...

I almost prefer a Victorian kitchen over the sterile ones often found nowadays. With all my labour saving gadgets hidden away in cupboards of course.

Jenni Steel said...

Hi Bob,

I to recall these days, I used to work in the dairy, firstly milking the cows by hand and then to taking the milk churns down to the creamery. everything was prestige clean. No germs managed to survive those temperatures. The crean was put aside so many pints for the house and the rest to be made into butter whilst the pasteurised milk went to the cooks.. It was a very interesting life and some people still live like that, even to today, to a certain degree.

Loved the pictures and the videos.

Brett Payne said...

Yes the old times were a lot harder, but nmothing wrong with some of those utensils. We still use a Doulton's Puro No 2 Water Filter daily for our drinking water needs.

Bees Knees Daily said...

Great pictures and I enjoyed reading about your memories. Seeing the old tin bathtub reminded me that I used one once as a child while on a visit to my great-uncle & aunt's home in the country in Alabama. They didn't have indoor plumbing at the time and for an eight year old child from the city, it was an experience I never forgot!

tony said...

Yes,Lots of memory-jogs here for me.
e.g.= I used to have a bath like that when I was A Kid!!!!

Tattered and Lost said...

Whenever I see these historical kitchens I just think about how hot they had to be. How often the kitchen was in a separate building to keep the heat from the main house. And the labor one had to do just to get the kitchen ready to start cooking. My grandmother cooked for wealthy families when she was young. I wish I'd asked more questions.

Teresa Wilson Rogers said...

All I can say is I am sure glad I did not have to cook in a Victorian kitchen! My cooking skills (and desire to cook) are weak enough that everyone would have gone hungry.

TICKLEBEAR said...

I watched only parts of the video, but it somehow reminded me of "Upstairs, Downstairs"; surely you are acquainted with the series?!
An odd connection you might think, but since it talked of servants and upper class, that's what came to my mind...
;)~
HUGZ

Mike Brubaker said...

Great post Bob, the kitchen has been the heart of a home ever since families started living in caves. I love the utilitarian qualities of vintage kitchens, much more like a good woodworking workshop. I doubt if 100 years from now photos of contemporary kitchens will elicit such fond memories from their granite and stainless steel appliances. "Oh I remember when we had a microwave oven like that!"