Miss Leslie’s New Cookery Book, 1857, First Edition, First Printing: Excellent copy of this highly collectible antique cookbook! Cookbook written by Eliza Leslie and published in 1857 by T. H. Peterson and Brothers, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Hard boards covered in brown linen, then heavily and intricately embossed with the same pattern on both the front and back covers. “Miss Leslie’s New Cookery Book” is embossed in gold on the spine cover. Cookbook has 662 pages, plus 69 pages of advertising for other titles in the T. H. Peterson and Brothers catalogue. This cookbook is in astonishingly good condition. Near mint, in fact. The cover has some minor shelf wear, especially at the edges and corners. The hinges and end papers may have been expertly redone at some point in the cookbook’s long life, because they are in as-if-new condition. Pages 51 through 58 have one dot of a stain that has bled through all those pages’ margins. The remainder of the pages are perfectly clear and clean. The binding is absolutely firm and sound.
This is an early American cookbook that is written in the first person, with much advice given to “you,” the cook. The recipes are written in full paragraphs. The details supply an amazing view of cooking in the early United States. For example, you could brown a potato dish by holding it over a “red-hot shovel.” Miss Leslie says, “Do not set a pudding on fire to burn out the liquor; that practice has had its day, and is over. It was always foolish.”