Described in the text as “Mister Murphy, the cook from France,” this character is clearly a forerunner of Mr. Potato Head. The exhaustive site dedicated to the history and collecting of this beloved toy does not mention the inventor’s George Lerner’s forebearers, Aunt Jo and Uncle George…
Next we have what appears to be what today’s foodies call a heritage breed of bird without the modern factory-farm turkey’s huge breast (it’s actually a wild turkey). According to the plate’s explanatory text, the turkey was brought from America to Europe by Jesuit missionaries in 1524 and was named after the country of Turkey from whence so many luxuries were imported:
This recipe (or directions for constructing a simple food sculpture) shows that Joost Elfers, Saxton Freyman, and Johannes van Dam were real Johnny-come-latelies when it comes to the art of playing with food. Check out this vegetarian alternative to the traditional turkey:
What about the kitchen where the feast is prepared? Here’s Cinderella toiling in a state-of-the-art facility from the turn of the nineteenth century…
Or here is Dame Trot peeking in while her clever cat is hard at work.
It’s time to uncork the wine and carve the bird!
With any luck, there will still be some stuffing left for later…Our apologies to the authors and illustrators of these children’s books from whence these images have been wrested and placed in not entirely appropriate contexts!
Have a happy holiday weekend from Team Cotsen!
Aaron Pickett, Andrea Immel, Dana Sheridan, and Jeff Barton