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Mrs. Coyle's Cookbook
- 9 Nightingale Lane...If You Love Downton Abbey You'll Love Ida Coyle's Stories of Victorian England, and Recipes from the Kitchen ... Lane (The Nightingale Lane, Book 6)
- Narrated by: Lesley Dessalles
- Series: The Nightingale Lane, Book 6
- Length: 5 hrs and 39 mins
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Categories: Romance, Historical
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Inspired by Stories from 99 Nightingale Lane and to accompany the popular series, Stories and Recipes from 99 Nightingale Lane from Ida Coyle.
I do believe I was born thinking about food, which didn’t do me much good, seeing as we didn’t have much of it. I know I’m lucky compared to many who had it harder than me...I’ve worked at 99 Nightingale Lane for most of my life, taken in by the family who lived there before the Sterns when my Ma was killed by The Ripper. They were an old London family, not that I would have taken any notice then. I was just a smidgen of a girl, one of many who worked here, nearly as many as the fleas on a dog’s tail. And...this is one of the things I learned from Mrs. Brimble, the cook who taught me everything I know.
"When I think about where I was born, where we lived over the tanners shop, and what my Ma had to do to put food on the table," I shook my head, "shehe wouldn’t believe that I stood there in that grand room, amongst all those beautiful things. And now I’m here in this kitchen with you, cooking the Hamilton’s luncheon. I so wish she could see me now."
Mrs Brimble put a hand on my arm. "She is watching, Ida, and I know she’d be proud of how well you’ve done and how hardworking you are, but not because of who you work for. She’d be proud because of who you are, the type of person you’ve become. That’s what’s important, ducky, not money and things what can be bought. Not tables of silverware and fruits from the continents or gowns from the salons of Bond Street. You’re just a little’un really, still young, but you will learn about what’s important, and there will be more laughter and smiles and happiness below stairs around our simple table when we have our Christmas dinner than there will be in that beautiful room, you mark my words." She lowered her voice."Y’see, Ida, they haven’t learned how to count their blessings. This is just another day to them. They see rooms like that all the time so they’ve forgotten how to be swept away by it. Do you think Lady Davinia will go into that room and widen her eyes in wonder like you did? Do you think Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton will take much notice of the table that the upstairs maids and the footman worked so hard to make look lovely? They’ll give it a glance only to find an imperfection. It’s how they are. They have plenty, they definitely do, but none of them appreciate it." She stared at me. "And that’s for your ears only," she whispered. You see. I had the best teacher.
This is my story of when I was a girl starting work at the age of 13 and how I fought my way through the ranks below stairs to become cook at 99 Nightingale Lane. And I've brought my favourite recipes with me, documented in Mrs. Coyle's Cookbook for you to make yourself and for you and your family to enjoy.
I hope you love my story and my recipes. It means so much to me that I've been given the opportunity to share them with you.
Warmest wishes from your friend, Ida Coyle, cook at 99 Nightingale Lane.