Oodles of Doodles

Hello! I’ve been busily working on Bootstrap so the blog has been a bit quiet lately – but here’s something I have been desperate to share for a while! The Kickstarter edition of Bootstrap will be illustrated instead of photographed, inspired by the old cookbooks like Mrs Beeton, Dorothy Hartley, and a lot of the 16th century cookery books I have found in the British Library on my research trips.
I have always dreamed of doing an old fashioned illustrated cookbook and
although I am not very good at ‘art’ I am adding a few of my own (the rest will be by proper independent illustrators, at the moment they are all Southend based and from the Estuary Fringe Festival – a co-operative of local mavericks and troublemakers I am proud to call my friends.) If I need any more doodles and squiggles I will put a shout out – I may need some for my blog going forward.
Anyway, enjoy, these are my efforts, none of them finished.

1: All Of My Spoons Tell Stories

2: A Few Of My Favourite Things

3: Pantry


Jack Monroe. On Twitter & Instagram @MxJackMonroe


Categories: Blog


  1. Now, that is special.
    You’re often compared with Jocasta Innes, Jack, and The Pauper’s Cookbook doesn’t have a single photo in it.

    There were many decent recipes from my very popular Seventies cookbook that I didn’t try for years, because I knew I couldn’t match the perfection of the photographs

    We’ve moved away from unrealistic pics, to more realistic food photos but they aren’t essential.

    Line drawings sound a great idea and timeless, too, what a buzz for all the artists to be part of your book.

  2. Lovely! Reminds me of the “Friends of the Earth Cookbook” by Veronica Sekules … Wore my first copy out and found a “new” one second hand. Super drawings Jack 😀

  3. Hi Jack,
    This is a f/u communication of non receipt of your cook book which I have been charged and paid for.
    I would like some acknowledgement of this issue please.

    Sent from my iPad


  4. that doesn’t look like “not good at drawing” …just keep making a drawing a day to work on hand/eye/brain co-ordination. All the best for the cook book

  5. Look forward to seeing the illustrations in the new book. If you need to “shout out” for any further help at any time, my son is an artist/illustrator and would be more than willing to help!! 🙂

  6. Oh gosh!

    I’ve been religiously doing one recipe a week AGNJ, but every one has been because of the photo beside it.
    Hopefully by May, I’ll have enough experience to work out what I’ll like from the words.

    Is it possible that the community can post photos when they make a dish to aid us visual cooks?

    Oh, and nothing but praise for the concept of using local artists, and I love the sketches!

  7. The drawings are great but like the idea of maybe still posting some photos. The pictures don’t have to be glossy or staged, but I think a lot of people are inspired to try new dishes due to being able to see what the end result should look like.

  8. I also like the idea of including some photos in the book. I think one of the reasons I have tried so many recipes from AGCJ is because I had so many visuas to work with. Just a personal preference I guess; I definitely am a fan of photos heavy cookbooks!

  9. I like the drawings – they are quirky. I don’t know about unfinished though, I like them they way they are smiley face and all. I had a Mrs Beetons and a Gasbook. They were passed down from my grandmother, through my Mum and then it me. They were lost to me during my late teens between house moves and I was distraught. I think this book will be another beloved Mrs B hand me down for lots of folks

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