In 1942, Some Favorite Southern Recipes of The Duchess of Windsor, was published with the proceeds going toward the war effort. The Duchess throughout her life credited her mother and her mother’s Virginia relations with her love of fine food and the gift of hospitality. In fact, when the Duchess and her mother ran into a rough patch it was her mother’s cooking that got them through the tough times. She literally ran a boarding house for a few years in Baltimore but her ideas were too ambitious to be practical. She served lavished meals including soft-shell crabs and terrapin stew and basically bankrupt the venture. However, it seems that Bessie Wallis Warfield, later Wallis Simpson and finally Wallis Windsor, instead of being scarred from the experience retained throughout her life a love of the domestic arts. In fact, the English were quite shocked at her domestic tendencies however much they charmed the Duke.
From the Duchess of Windsor’s Forward to the recipe collection,
“Every country in Europe has certain dishes for which it has always been famous. That is many times true of the United States, which has a different culinary tradition for every large section. I myself am most familiar, of course, with Southern cooking, and especially the dishes of Maryland. The markets of Baltimore have long been known for their great variety of fine foods, and the city has always been famous for its cooking. I have been very happy to help carry some of the well-known dishes of my native land to other countries, and especially to have served on my table Southern dishes which appeal to the Duke.”