I've been enjoying the repeats of Downton Abbey (a British Edwardian-era drama set in a Yorkshire country house) on PBS recently. Can't wait for season two to start in January! It's a fictional account but with period-perfect details including the typical daily chores of the household staff. With three large meals a day plus tea times to prepare, it seems as if the kitchen staff barely had time to sleep. The kitchen space was large and well-equipped, but the work was endless and sometimes thankless. Period kitchens like these are, to me (the modern person who doesn't have to wash all those dishes for someone else), wonderful spaces. It's funny how we equate modern technology-free kitchens with simpler times--the meals and gatherings were so elaborate!
These photos are from England's Petworth House where, reportedly, 30,000-some meals were prepared every year during the same era of Downton Abbey. I love the copper mold collection and all of the beautiful copper stock pots (top). The "still room" (below) was the location for tea time and fruit preserve prep. Learn more here.