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Recipe for a Salad
Sydney Smith

To make this condiment your poet begs
The pounded yellow of two hard-boil'd eggs;
Two boiled potatoes, passed through kitchen sieve,
Smoothness and softness to the salad give.
Let onion atoms lurk within the bowl,
And, half-suspected, animate the whole.
Of mordant mustard add a single spoon,
Distrust the condiment that bites so soon;
But deem it not, thou man of herbs, a fault
To add a double quantity of salt;
Four times the spoon with oil of Lucca crown,
And twice with vinegar procur'd from town;
And lastly o'er the flavour'd compound toss
A magic soupçon of anchovy sauce.
Oh, green and glorious! Oh, herbaceous treat!
Twould tempt the dying anchorite to eat;
Back to the world he'd turn his fleeting soul,
And plunge his fingers in the salad-bowl!
Serenely full, the epicure would say,
`Fate cannot harm me, I have dined today.'

This poem is in the public domain.



Sydney Smith (1771 - 1845) was an English priest, teacher, and writer. Congenial and clever, he was a hugely popular preacher and often drew standing-room-only crowds. Ahead of his time, Sydney was a champion of women's rights, an opponent of slavery, and an advocate of common sense.

Post New Comment:
Glen Sorestad:
Absolutely delightful. And written only a couple of centuries ago, to say it has stood the test of time would be quite an understatement.
Posted 11/20/2011 10:07 AM
Thoroughly, unexpectedly, original, decades and decades ahead of its time. It took Mirriam-Webster to inform me an anchorite is a "person who lives in seclusion usually for religious reasons;" linguistic precision.
Posted 11/20/2011 09:07 AM

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