Soyer's Culinary Campaign: Being Historical Reminiscences of the Late War by Alexis Soyer
Perhaps the first celebrity chef, Alexis Soyer (1810-58) was a flamboyant, larger-than-life character who nonetheless took his profession very seriously. As the chef of the Reform Club, he modernised its kitchens, installing refrigerators and gas cookers. In 1851, during the Great Exhibition, he prepared spectacular (but financially ruinous) culinary extravaganzas at his restaurant, the Gastronomic Symposium of All Nations. In stark contrast, he organised soup kitchens during the Great Famine in Ireland and volunteered his services in the Crimea in 1855 to improve military catering. This work, first published in 1857, gives a vivid account of his efforts to prepare nutritious meals for the soldiers using a newly invented portable field stove, which remained in use until the Second World War. Also reissued in this series are Soyer's Gastronomic Regenerator (1846) and The Modern Housewife or Menagere (1849).