Modern recipes and cooking guidance
from Modern Cookery for Individual People by Eliza Acton (London: Longmans, Green, Reader, and Dyer, 1871. p.48.)

With the arrival of the making press in the 16th and 17th generations, numerous publications were published on how best to control house holds and make food. In Holland and Britain opposition became between the respectable people regarding who can prepare the most extravagant banquet. By the 1660s, cookery had evolved to a skill sort and great chefs were in demand. Many published their own publications detailing their recipes in opposition using their rivals. Several books have now been translated and can be found online.

By the 19th century, the Victorian preoccupation for domestic respectability caused the emergence of cookery publishing in its contemporary form. Even though eclipsed in recognition and respect by Isabella Beeton, the initial contemporary cookery author and compiler of recipes for the home was Eliza Acton. Her groundbreaking cookbook, Contemporary Cookery for Private Families printed in 1845, was aimed at the domestic audience rather than the qualified cook or chef. This was hugely important, establishing the structure for contemporary authoring cookery. It introduced the now-universal exercise of listing the substances and recommended preparing times with each recipe. It included the very first recipe for Brussels sprouts. Contemporary chef Delia Smith named Acton “the very best writer of recipes in the British language.” Modern Cookery extended lasted Acton, outstanding in print till 1914 and available more recently in facsimile.

Acton’s function was a significant influence on Isabella Beeton, who published Mrs Beeton’s Guide of Family Management in 24 regular pieces between 1857 and 1861. This was a guide to owning a Victorian household, with suggestions about fashion, child attention, animal husbandry, poisons, the management of servants, science, faith, and industrialism. Of the 1,112 pages, over 900 included recipes. Most were highlighted with colored engravings. It is said that most of the recipes were plagiarised from earlier in the day authors such as for example Acton, however the Beetons never said that the book’s contents were original. It had been supposed as a reliable guide for the aspirant heart classes.

The National cook Fannie Farmer (1857–1915) printed in 1896 her popular function The Boston Cooking School Cookbook which covered some 1,849 recipes.