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When this book was originally published in 1911, Fannie Farmer said: "Americans of today are accused, somewhat unjustly, it seems, of being inhospitable. Because we do not, in the manner of a generation or two ago, lay aside all our duties at the visit of friends and welcome them ungrudgingly to our ordinary meal we expose ourselves to this charge; but, in truth, it is a higher conception of hospitality that has brought about this change. We receive our guests more normally; we make preparations for their coming, and take pleasure in giving them a meal that shall vary from the humdrum order of culinary production. The fashion in entertaining, as in so many other things, has changed, and consciously or unconsciously we conform to the new standards. And why is not the new hospitality more satisfying, both to the host and guest, than the old? It seems to me that housekeepers are enjoying as never before the days set apart for their friends, and have learned to! appreciate the saying of Brillat-Savarin, 'He who receives friends, without himself bestowing some pains upon the repast prepared for them, does not deserve to have friends.' And certainly there is none of us so regardless of the delights of the table that he does not respond to the warming influences of a meal prepared by a thoughtful hostess as a tribute to him as a guest."
"The difficulty for the housekeeper lies in the selection of an appropriate menu. This little book is intended to meet this difficulty. May it be a help to many!"
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