Mrs Isabella Beeton (all publications)

She may only have lived for 46 years (12 March 1836 – 6 February 1865) yet the vivacious Mrs Beeton has given us a plethora of recipes, advice, diagrams and guidance from her short publishing career.  Many of the recipes published either in the early articles or as part of compiled books were never directly attributed to her, rather she took it upon herself with her publisher husband, to educate the Victorian woman on the best household management techniques.  I tend to prefer cookery books without pictures, then you are not bound to slavishly copy another person's creation, rather you are free to create as you see fit and as you are able; due to the era, the illustrations in Mrs Beeton are very artistic, rather than realistic, I would dearly love original copies of her books for now I make do with modern reproductions.  Of all her works the one I get most value from is the The Best of Mrs Beetons Kitchen Garden  re-published in 2007 by Orion Publishing this is a modern compilation of gardening articles and tips.  The book covers the basics for building a kitchen garden, and provides detailed information on a vast inventory of fruits and vegetables.  As a Victorian-era fanatic I have a deep love of Mrs Beeton, and all she represents in terms of educating women, information sharing and generally being sensible without being dull.