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Culinary Historians of Boston.

Speaker meetings take place monthly, on a weeknight.
All speaker meetings are open to the public.

Winter 2016

Tuesday, February 16th 2016, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Ina Lipkowitz will present: The Written Kitchen: From Early Cookbooks To Contemporary Blogs

The birth of blogs in the 1990’s provided a new medium for untrained middle-class women who love to cook to reach other women who also love to cook. Somehow, with neither computer skills nor formal culinary training, these bloggers succeed in creating virtual communities of passionate followers and their cookbooks are instant bestsellers.

As they say, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Back in the 18th century, the cookbook and recipe format that we still recognize today came into being when untrained middle-class women identified and spoke to a new audience: young inexperienced women who needed help preparing family meals with neither mother nor grandmother close at hand. With none of the formality of professionally trained male chef’s cookbooks, these early women cookbook writers developed many of the strategies used by today’s food bloggers to such tremendous success.

Tuesday, March 22nd 2016, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Anastacia Marx de Salcedo will present: The Military Impact on 20th and 21st Century Consumer Food

anastacia_marx_de_salcedo-2c-md-680x1024It's a little-known fact that the US military is behind much of the science used in creating processed foods. Ever since Napoleon, armies have sought better ways to preserve, store and transport edibles for battle. As part of this quest, the American army spearheaded the invention of energy bars, restructured meat, extended-life bread, cling wrap, cheese powder, TV dinners, active dry yeast, instant coffee and much more. After World War II, as part of our national policy of preparedness, the Defense Department enlisted industry—huge corporations such as ADM, ConAgra, General Mills, Hershey, Hormel, Mars, Nabisco, Reynolds, Smithfield, Swift, Tyson, and Unilever—to help. It’s a good deal for both sides: the companies get exclusive patents or a jumpstart on a breakthrough technology; the army gets a ready supply of rations manufacturers should there ever be a World War III. But there’s a catch. The traits prized in soldier sustenance—imperishability, durability, affordability and appeal to a broad range of palates—have ended up dominating our grocery store shelves and refrigerator cases, often to the detriment of consumer health.

In addition to a detailed discussion of the origins of various supermarket items, this talk will cover the history of combat rations from antiquity to the present (think prosciutto!), the invention of canning during the Napoleonic Wars, the impact of the Spanish-American War’s “embalmed beef” scandal on the country, and the military’s 20th-century transformation of the nascent field of food science.

Anastacia Marx de Salcedo is the author of Combat-Ready Kitchen: How the U.S. Military Shapes the Way You Eat, published in August 2015 by Penguin Random House. The book, the first ever on the topic and based on original research using declassified Defense Department documents and archived food science journals, received considerable national coverage. Pieces were written about it in Bon Appétit, NPR’s The Salt, Time, the Wall Street Journal, and Popular Science, among many other places, and recorded segments about it appeared on Marketplace, PRI The World, the BBC, Reuters and Gravy—and the coverage will be continuing with interviews coming up on Morning Edition and America’s Test Kitchen. She’s also written for publications such as the Atlantic, Salon, Slate, the Boston Globe, the Boston Business Journal, Gourmet, Saveur and PBS and NPR blogs, and has worked as a public health consultant, a newsmagazine editor and a public policy researcher.

Tuesday, April 12th 2016, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Andy Smith will present: Sugar from his book on “Sugar

It’s no surprise that sugar has been on our minds for several millenia. First cultivated in New Guinea around 8,000 B.C.E., this addictive sweetener has since come to dominate our appetites-whether in candy, desserts, soft drinks, or even pasta sauces-for better and for worse. In this presentation, Andrew F. Smith will offer a fascinating history of this simultaneously beloved and reviled ingredient, holding its incredible value as a global commodity up against its darker legacies of slavery and widespread obesity.

As Smith demonstrates, sugar’s past is chock-full of determined adventurers: relentless sugar barons and plantation owners who worked alongside plant breeders, food processors, distributors, and politicians to build a business based on our cravings. Exploring both the sugarcane and sugar beet industries, he tells story after story of those who have made fortunes and those who have met demise all because of sugar’s simple but profound hold on our palettes. Delightful and surprisingly action-packed, this book offers a layered and definitive tale of sugar and the many people who have been caught in its spell-from barons to slaves, from chefs to the countless among us born with that insatiable devil, the sweet tooth.



Spring 2016

Tuesday, January 12th 2016, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Annelies Zijderveld will talk about her new book: Steeped: Recipes Infused with Tea

This presentation promises to inspire you to pull out your favorite teas, fire up the stove, and get steeping!

In her new book, Steeped: Recipes Infused with Tea Annelies Ziderveld teaches how to romance your oat porridge with rooibos, jazz up your brussel sprouts with jasmine, charge your horchata with masala chai! Annelies Zijderveld’s deliciously inventive tea-steeped recipes include:

  1. Matcha Chia Pudding Parfaits
  2. Earl Grey Soba Noodle Salad
  3. Green Tea Coconut Rice
  4. Chamomile Buttermilk Pudding with Caramelized Banana
  5. Earl Grey Poached Pears with Masala Chai Caramel Sauce


Fall 2015


Tuesday, November 10th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
The Brass Sisters will present: Baking With The Brass Sisters their new book arriving this fall.

Tuesday, December 8th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Nancy Jenkins will talk about: Virgin Territory : Exploring the world of Olive Oil

Nancy's new Book, Virgin Territory : Exploring the world of Olive Oil captures the delights of making and cooking with olive oil. Olive oil is more popular than ever, thanks to its therapeutic and preventative effects in treating different diseases, as well as the growing variety of brands and imports available. Nancy Harmon Jenkins, arguably the leading authority on olive oil and the healthy Mediterranean diet, will discuss her new book Virgin Territory. The book features recipes ranging from soups to seafood to sauces to sweets. You will hear about many but this talk isn’t just about hearty and healthful recipes; Jenkins also will cover the history and culture of olive oil as well as how to buy it and cook with it.

Wednesday, October 14th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Rosana Yin-Ting Wan will present "The Culinary Lives of John and Abigail Adams"

Rosana Yin-Ting Wan was born in Hong Kong and migrated to the United States as a child.  Although she primarily grew up in Houston, Texas, she also lived in various places including Upstate New York and San Francisco.  She started her undergraduate work at University of Houston-Downtown in Houston, Texas and later transferred to Suffolk University in Boston where she received her B.A. in History, with honors, in 2011. 

Since relocating to Boston, she continues to pursue her studies in the history of the American Revolution, 18th century culinary culture, and fine arts.  In the summer of 2012, while volunteering at the Boston National Historical Park, she did a televised interview with Sean Hennessey, the public affairs officer of the park for the SinoVision TV station on how the National Park Service plays a major role in preserving Boston History. Then she worked as a Park Ranger for the Adams National Historical Park. Later she became a seasonal park interpreter for the Pilgrim Memorial State Park, with the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She received the 2014 Outstanding New Interpreter Award from the DCR.  She is a former re-enactor of the Charlestown Militia Company, in Charlestown, Massachusetts. She is an independent scholar, a museum docent, and serves as a sergeant in the Army National Guard. 

She is the first recipient of the John C. Cavanagh Prize in History at Suffolk University in 2011 and a member of the Phi Alpha Theta (National History Honor Society).

She has recently published the book The Culinary Lives of John & Abigail Adams: A Cookbook, by Schiffer Publishing, LTD. It focuses on the food culture during their lifetime (1735-1826), both at home and abroad. Each recipe is based on their correspondence and cookbooks published during the late 18th century and early 19th century.

Tuesday September 15th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Barbara Haber will present: “Cooking in Captivity: American Civilians in WWII Japanese Prison Camps"

Immediately after attacking Pearl Harbor, the Japanese invaded the Philippines and imprisoned thousands of American civilians who spent the war years deprived of food. Among them was Natalie Crouter, a remarkable Boston-bred woman who kept a diary that describes how a deep longing for food preoccupied every internee. In this lecture with illustrations, author Barbara Haber will share her research of Natalie Crouter's detailed wartime diary. Haber, the former Curator of Printed Books at the Schlesinger Library, developed a collection of more than 16,000 volumes on cooking and food for the library, established the Radcliffe Culinary Friends, co-founded the Radcliffe Culinary Times and was one of the founding members of the Culinary Historians of Boston.

The author of From Hardtack to Home Fries: An Uncommon History of American Cooks and Meals, she has written for Harvard Magazine, Yankee Magazine, Notable American Women and many other publications. She currently serves on the awards board of the James Beard Foundation and has served on the governing board of the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

Save the date! This September, the Culinary Historians are invited to "Food and Drink in Early Boston," this year's original and amazing program of events exploring 17th-century life in Boston.

See a whole list and sign up here!

From tastings to tours to talks, The Partnership of the Historic Bostons is proud to offer this FREE chance to learn about 17th-century Boston. Given the focus of the Culinary Historians, I imagine this topic would be of great relevance. I was searching around via google and was thrilled to discover your group!

What's on the menu?

  • A unique new walking tour that shares the stories and sites of Boston’s first food landmarks
  • A tasting evening of 17th-century food led by Plimoth Plantation's culinarian –including food from Loyal Nine!
  • Thought-provoking debate about the issues beyond the table, from cooperation to conflict between colonists and Native Americans over food and land
  • Special tour of the Saugus Iron Works to learn about the Scottish prisoners of war who toiled at America’s first industrial site – and what they ate and how they cooked
  • A fascinating, thought-provoking talk on Puritan beliefs about food – could spiritual food sustain them when crops were scarce?
  • A display of New England Historical Genealogical Society treasures related to food.

Tuck in to a delectable feast of 17th-century Boston history. I hope you can pass this information along to your friends and colleagues – please feel free to contact me with any questions.


Tuesday January 27th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Barbara Haber will present:L
“Cooking in Captivity: American Civilians in WWII Japanese Prison Camps"

Tuesday February 10th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Rosana Yin-Ting Wan will present "The Culinary Lives of John and Abigail Adams"

Tuesday March 10th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Jason Karakehian will present "A sketch of the rise of “eatable” mushrooms in 19th century America"

Jason Karakehian

Jason Karakehian is a Massachusetts native and has studied mycology and its history as an avocation since 2009.  He is an active member of the Boston Mycological Club, Friends of the Farlow Herbarium and the New England Botanical Club.  Jason recently published a paper in the journal Mycologia on the fungal genus Angelina and is currently coauthoring a paper on the early 19th century illustrations of fungi by Louis David von Schweinitz.  Also in process is an account of the antebellum mycological correspondence of Charles James Sprague of Boston and Rev. Moses Ashley Curtis of the Carolinas.  Other activities include tracing the history of botany in MA though the archives of the Boston Society of Natural History, housed at the Museum of Science, Boston.

To the early European colonists in America, mushrooms were mere excrescences of the earth – when they were noticed at all.  Native Americans regarded them to have ceremonial importance but as a whole, little is known of their dietary use.  It was not until the early 19th century when a systematic account of our nation’s fungal flora commenced.  Later, the deprivations of the Civil War would force one clergyman/scientist to begin “experimenting” with eating different species of locally foraged mushrooms.  Others soon followed and began to raise awareness of the potential of this food source in the popular press.  Declarations of “wasted food” along with news of accidental poisonings and the arrival of unabashed mycophagist immigrants from Italy and eastern Europe challenged American culture to reckon with the dangers and potential of mushrooms.  With the formation of the first mycological clubs in the northeast and a dedicated governmental effort to educate the public, the effort was joined to popularize the edible mushroom.

Tuesday April 7th 2015, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Author Mike Urban will present "The History of New England Diners"

New England is the birthplace of the American diner, and Mike Urban will bring together the best of them and share with you their best recipes for comfort food, New England style. Celebrate the food, culture, and funky architecture of these scrappy culinary icons with recipes, color photos, interviews with owners, and heartwarming stories from a broad array of customers.

Diners were born in New England (Rhode Island, to be exact), and they have a long and colorful history as local eateries of distinction because of both their menus and their buildings. Though many diners have gone by the wayside in the past half century, there are still plenty around, and each has at least a dish or two for which they’re best known and that keep customers coming back year after year. The New England Diner Cookbook celebrates every facet of these diamonds in the rough. Along with diners that have perfected the tried-and-true items like corned beef hash, clam chowder, and malted milkshakes, many have developed relatively sophisticated menus that include distinctly New England delicacies like Lobster Chow Mein, Butterscotch Indian Pudding, and Portobello Mushroom Fries.

Mike is the author of The New England Diner Cookbook: Classic and Creative Recipes from the Finest Roadside Eateries

Tuesday November 25th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Jeri Quinzio will present "Food on the Rails: The Golden Era of Railroad Dining"

In roughly one hundred years – from the 1870s to the 1970s – dining on trains began, soared to great heights, and then fell to earth.

The founders of the first railroad companies cared more about hauling freight than feeding passengers. The only food available on trains in the mid-nineteenth century was whatever passengers brought aboard in their lunch baskets or managed to pick up at a brief station stop. It was hardly fine dining.

Seeing the business possibilities in offering long-distance passengers comforts such as beds, toilets, and meals, George Pullman and other pioneering railroaders like Georges Nagelmackers of Orient Express fame, transformed rail travel. Fine dining and wines became the norm for elite railroad travelers by the turn of the twentieth century. The foods served on railroads – from consommé to turbot to soufflé, always accompanied by champagne - equaled that of the finest restaurants, hotels, and steamships.

After World War II, as airline travel and automobiles became the preferred modes of travel, elegance gave way to economy. Canned and frozen foods, self-service, and quick meals and snacks became the norm. By the 1970s, the golden era of railroad dining had come grinding to a halt.
Food on the Rails traces the rise and fall of food on the rails from its rocky start to its glory days to its sad demise. Looking at the foods, the service, the rail station restaurants, the menus, they dining accommodations and more, Jeri Quinzio brings to life the history of cuisine and dining in railroad cars from the early days through today.

From the Hardcover edition:Food on the Rails: The Golden Era of Railroad Dining (Food on the Go)

Tuesday December 2nd 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Becky Sue Epstein will present "Brandy: A Global History"

Cognac – an illustrious and elegant amber brandy – is currently one of the most fashionable components of high-end mixed drinks, consumed in the world’s coolest bars.
Many cultures have played a part in the history of the beverage, from the Dutch who made brandewijn or ‘burnt wine,’ to the Spanish colonials in Peru and California who produced the first brandies in the New World.

Brandy: A Global History takes readers on a journey from the alchemists of the Middle Ages to present-day mixology hotspots, chronicling the history of the drink and the beautiful locations in which it is produced. For those inclined to imbibe, the book offers advice on buying, storing and serving brandy, and features classic and new cocktail recipes for both connoisseurs and first-time drinkers to enjoy.

Tuesday September 9th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Paula Marcoux on “Cooking with Fire”

Cooking with live fire goes way beyond the barbecue grill. Rediscover the pleasures of a variety of unconventional techniques, from roasting pork on a spit to baking bread in ashes, searing fish on a griddle, roasting vegetables in a fireplace, making soup in a cast-iron pot, baking pizza in a wood-fired oven, cooking bacon on a stick, and much, much more. Includes 100 recipes for everything from roasted rabbit and fish chowder to baguettes and burnt cream.

See her Book at Amazon: Cooking with Fire: From Roasting on a Spit to Baking in a Tannur, Rediscovered Techniques and Recipes That Capture the Flavors of Wood-Fired Cooking

Tuesday October 21st 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Maria Speck on “Ancient Wheats—From Einkorn and Emmer to Spelt and Kamut”

Before the rise of high-protein modern-day wheat—cultivated to be easy to harvest and to provide us with fluffy industrial breads—there were the ancient wheat varieties such as einkorn, emmer (better known as farro), spelt, and Kamut.

How are they different from modern-day wheat? What about claims that they are easier to digest, offering help to people with gluten-sensitivities? Where you can you find them? How do you cook and bake with them? Ancient grains expert Maria Speck will discuss these wheat varieties, which she has examined closely for her next cookbook. She will introduce their unique character, their textures and flavors, and answer questions.

Bio: Maria Speck is the award-winning author of Ancient Grains for Modern Meals (Ten Speed Press), her first cookbook. It received the coveted Julia Child Award and the Health and Special Diet award from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP), as well as a Gourmand Award. The cookbook contains 100 Mediterranean-inspired whole grain recipes—from amaranth to wheat berries.

Both the New York Times and the Washington Post selected Ancient Grains as one of the top cookbooks of 2011, and Cooking Light magazine named it one of the 100 best cookbooks of the past 25 years.

Maria's next cookbook, Simply Ancient Grains, will be published in spring by Ten Speed Press. Raised in Greece and Germany, Maria has a lifelong passion for whole grains. She is a veteran journalist and food writer, and has contributed to Gourmet, Saveur, and Gastronomica. She also blogs at www.MariaSpeck.com.

Tuesday April 8th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Professors Lisa Stoffer & Michael Lesy will give a talk on
"Repast: Dining Out at the Dawn of the New American Century, 1900-1910"

Before Julia Child introduced the American housewife to France’s cuisine bourgeoise, before Alice Waters built her Berkeley shrine to local food, before Wolfgang Puck added Asian flavors to classical dishes and caviar to pizza, the restaurateurs and entrepreneurs of the early twentieth century were changing the way America ate. Beginning with the simplest eateries and foods and culminating with the emergence of a genuinely American way of fine dining, This talk will take members on a culinary tour of early-twentieth-century restaurants and dining as described in the book Repast. The innovations introduced at the time—in ingredients, technologies, meal service, and cuisine—transformed the act of eating in public in ways that persist to this day.


The 2014 Culinary Historians of Boston BanqueT

"A Taste of Morocco"

Each year the Culinary Historians of Boston join together for a banquet celebrating a specific historical period or Cuisine. This year the Banquet is titled "A Taste of Morocco" !

Moroccan Spices

In her book Arabesque, Claudia Roden writes about the Moroccan Cuisine "Moroccan cooking is the most exquisite and refined of North Africa, especially famous for its couscous, its multilayered pies and delicately flavored tagines, its marriages of meat with fruit, and its extraordinary combinations of spicy, savory and sweet. Styles of cooking go back hundreds of years. Some are rooted in the rural traditions of the indigenous Berber populations of Morocco, while an important grand style is a legacy from the Royal kitchens of the great Moroccan dynasties that has echoes from the medieval Bagdad and Muslim Spain."

More information with date and time coming soon.

Please research, read and learn and engage yourself in this most scrumptious cuisine and cook for all a dish of your choosing to bring to the banquet. Write a short memo describing how and why you were inspired by this dish and tell us all the ingredients and how it was cooked. This is your assignment for the Banquet.

Member Mohamed Maenaoui provides us with the following starting point:

Major elements of the Moroccan Cuisine


Harissa: a red firry sauce (but green version, but rare), made mainly from red chilies, and enhanced with garlic, caraway seeds, and coriander. In my version, I add red vinegar to increase the shelf life, and add to it another layer of flavor.
Chemoula, green & red: most often used as a fragrant marinade for fish, but it could also be used for meat, poultry, or vegetables
Pickled lemon
Ras al hanout, a spice mix made of twelve to twenty or more spices, depending where you buy it from. It is an all purpose mixture, but usually added to tagines.

Moroccan cuisine uses a liberal amount of many more spice, herbs, condiment, among them: cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cloves, caraway seeds, fenugreek, nutmeg, fennel seeds, black and white pepper corns, cilantro, parsley, thyme, oregano, basil, etc

Kemia, Meze, and Spreads

Khobiza (marsh mellow greens) spread
Bissara, dry fava beens spread
Zaarlook, kind of ratatouille, with eggplant, zucchini, and sweet peppers
Briwats, filo pastry stuffed with fresh cheese, ground lamb, beef or chicken

Main Dishes

Lemon chicken tagine with olives
Slow braised beef short ribs with prunes and roasted almonds
Couscous and vegetables with chicken, lamb, or beef
R’fissa with m’ssaman, shredded like pasta, and dressed a brothy stew of chicken, lot of white onion, seasoned with fenugreek, herbs, smen (aged clarified butter, lot of umami!)
Chicken bastilla (usually squab) very rich, but delicious. You could find in some great restaurant of Paris, San Francisco, New York


Kaab al ghazal (gazelle horns) stuffed with ground almond, orange flower water, and cinnamon.
Briwat be louz


An intro to Morocco cultural history by Prof. Abdellah Laroui.

Facebook Links:
Moroccan Cooking
Paula Wolfert

Menu ideas and recipes
Food by Country: Morocco
How to fold and shape Moroccan meloui
Zaalouk: How to shape and fold Moroccan massaman
Recipe for harissa on page 71
Ras-el-hanout (Moroccan-spice-blend)
Chicken-lemon-and-olive-tagine recipe
Chicken Lemon and olive tagine
Moroccan Bread
Preserved Lemons
Moroccan spiced leg of lamb
Moroccan Lemon Chicken with Olives
Warka, filo dough Moroccan style, is faster than you my think!
A step-by-step recipe for Bastila
Herb jam
The wizard of Moroccan Cooking: Najat
Najat new restaurant


Two Directions for Moroccan Cuisine

Paula Wolfert talks about “what makes a tajine a tajine”:

And finally, Paula Wolfert, the chronicler of Moroccan cuisne website.

Tuesday March 18th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Bob Frishman will give a talk on “Clockwork roasting jacks”

Bob Frishman has repaired, restored and sold antique clocks for more than thirty-two years. In 1992, he founded Bell-Time Clocks, named after a Harper's Weekly engraving by Winslow Homer depicting New England mill buildings and workers. In 2002, he came home from an auction with two clockwork roasting jacks which he gave to his wife, Jeanne Schinto, connecting with her fascination with the history of food. What followed was an investigation into the history of these ingenious gadgets. Bob will explore this topic with us while sharing his passion for historic time keeping devices.

Tuesday February 4th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Darra Goldstein will present "The Oxford Companion to Sweets: An Inside Look"


DarraDarra Goldstein, Founding Editor of Gastronomica and Editor-in-Chief of the forthcoming Oxford Companion to Sweets, will offer an insider’s look at how a volume of this magnitude is put together. With over 600 detailed entries on all aspects of sweets throughout the world, the Companion will be more than a listing of candies, cakes, and pastries. It will also contain material on the chemistry, biochemistry, history, culture, and visual culture of sugar and other sweeteners throughout time. Following a brief discussion of the book’s contents and how to conceptualize and accomplish a large project like this, the presentation will open up to the group for a conversation about approaches to food history and culture in publishing.

Tuesday January 7th 2014, @ 6:00pm Radcliffe Room, Schlesinger Library:
Prof. Christopher Jones will present "Blood, Pagan and Christian:The contrast between the Greco-Roman attitude to meat, fish, bread and wine as articles of consumption and the corresponding early Christian attitude."

For the early Christians, “pagan” referred to a multitude of unbelievers: Greek and Roman devotees of the Olympian gods, and “barbarians” such as Arabs and Germans with their own array of deities. But while these groups were clearly outsiders or idolaters, who and what was pagan depended on the outlook of the observer. Treating paganism as a historical construct rather than a fixed entity, Prof. Christopher Jones' book Between Pagan and Christian uncovers the ideas, rituals, and beliefs that Christians and pagans shared in Late Antiquity.

Tuesday November 12th 2013, 6 p.m., at the Sheerr Room in Fay House, Radcliffe
Michael Reiskind will present the History of the Lost Breweries of Roxbury & Jamaica Plain

JP Brewery

Michael Reiskind, vice-president and historian of the JP Historical Society,
has been researching Boston's historic breweries for twenty years. His talk will been on:
Lost Breweries of Roxbury & Jamaica Plain.

In 1900, Boston had the most breweries per person of any
city in the country - and the overwhelming majority of them
were in the Stony Brook area of Roxbury and Jamaica Plain.

During the heyday of Boston breweries, this area was the center of the industry with at least 24 breweries along the banks of the Stony Brook. Learn about the
history of brewing in Boston and the people who established the breweries in our city.

Tuesday December 3rd 2013, @ 6:00pm Schlesinger Library:
Yoshio Saito will discuss: "Okonomiyaki: Japanese Comfort Food"


Yoshio Saito is the author of Okonomiyaki: Japanese Comfort Food
The talk will be about Japanese comfort food, centering around Okonomiyaki in a few different regional styles. Okonomiyaki is seldom seen in the US and not in Boston.

There is one take-out place in New York City.
Chef Saito will discuss this very popular dish in Japan.
Also, you will have a chance to taste some of the dishes.
He completed a professional Okonomiyaki School in Japan, run by Otafuku Sauce Company.

Tuesday October 29th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Rachel E. Black, PhD will present: La cuisine des mères: How women made Lyon the gastronomic capital of France, 1890-1935

figure 2

Rachel E. Black, PhD is Assistant Professor & Academic Coordinator of the Gastronomy Program, Boston University, 808 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215 tel. 617-358-6291 fax. 617-353-4130

Women played an exceptional part in constructing a highly acclaimed regional cuisine in Lyon during the first half of the twentieth century. In 1935, the restaurant critic and culinary writer Curnonsky declared Lyon the gastronomic capital of France. Gastronomes and early culinary tourists held lyonnais cuisine in high esteem for its honesty and lack of artifice. Women often ran the kitchens in the small restaurants in Lyon that earned critical praise in the Interwar years. This was a moment when women claimed an important place in an otherwise male dominated field—professional cooking. Critics and gastronomes declared female chefs—les meres--the guardians of culinary tradition. Focusing on the lives of Eugénie Brazier and Françoise Fillioux, this article will explore the changing gender dynamics in France from 1890-1935 and the historic conditions that made it possible for a small group of women to rise to prominence in the culinary arts.

Rachel E. Black is Associate Editor Food and Foodways
and has written
Porta Palazzo: The Anthropology of an Italian Market
Wine and Culture: Vineyard to Glass


Tuesday September 24th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Medieval Arabs Ate Sandwiches, too: Bazmaward and Awsat for the Record
by Nawal Nasrallah

Garden of Eden Delights

The talk will survey the extant medieval Arabic record of the sandwich, impressively extensive and varied, to controvert the dominant western view that the sandwich was ‘invented’ in eighteenth-century England. Brick-oven spongy and crusty breads and thin malleable varieties were used by Arab cooks to make sandwiches, called awsat and bazmaward. These sandwiches were popular snacks purchased from the food markets, and offered as hors d’oeuvre before the main hot meal. The medieval Arab sandwich was not an isolated accomplishment: its lineage and culture can be seen in the evolution of some of today’s widespread sandwiches, such as shawirma, in whose dissemination Middle-Eastern immigrants were a key factor. Immigrants from Sicily, where the Arabs ruled for centuries, transmitted the sandwich culture to other shores, as far away as New Orleans, whose national sandwich is the muffaletta, said to be of Sicilian origin. The article further provides the missing Arab link for this popular ‘Western’ sandwich by outlining its Arab origin, including its name.
Along with the talk there will be a brief demo showing how the medieval sandwich was made by following one of the recipes. Sampling of medieval sandwiches will be offered, too.

Delights from the Garden Of Eden
A Cookbook and History of the Iraqi Cuisine
Read about the most ancient and the first documented world cuisine.
Visit my website: iraqicookbook.com
and blog: In my Iraqi Kitchen: Recipes, Culture and History
Mobile site URL
Order info, click

The 34th Conference of the Ephemera Society of America
“Food & Drink: Field to Table”

Friday March 14 2014, 8:45 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Grand Hyatt, Greenwich CT

Food and Drink

The voluptuous Sophia Loren supposedly quipped “everything you see I owe to spaghetti.” This remark, although apocryphal, serves as an epigrammatic reminder that the food we plant, harvest, package, prepare and eat is a reflection of ourselves and our culture. The distinguished Ephemera/34 speakers have undoubtedly deeply immersed themselves in the “Loren Theorem” and will demonstrate how the often visually stunning ephemera of food and drink similarly both mirrors and influences culture. While this may sound frightfully over-academic to some, one must remember that others have frequently considered food ephemera to be merely rather modern paper abundantly found in dollar bins at antique malls. Apparently, at least in in the popular imagination, the ephemera of food and drink occupies opposite ends of the collecting spectrum: from highfalutin to commonplace. For additional Info: http://www.ephemerasociety.org/34.html Should you have additional questions on the event please don’t hesitate to contact me at sheryljaeger@comcast.net or 860-872-7587.

Sandra L. Oliver will lead an intensive three-day workshop in historic recipe research.
Every Dish Has a Past: A Workshop in Historic Recipe Research
March 17, 2014 - March 19, 2014 9:00 pm - 5:00 pm

@ Visitor Center at Hall Tavern Kitchen, Deerfield, MA

Sandra L. Oliver, noted food historian and celebrated author, will lead an intensive three-day workshop in historic recipe research. Each participant selects a recipe and an alternative they would like to research. Class time is divided between lecture and discussion time, and Oliver will teach a method of conducting the research. Each participant will use a combination of resources both real—books in the room—and virtual—online resources via computer—to conduct research. Participants are encouraged to bring a computer with wireless capacity. The workshop concludes with a cooking afternoon to test your recipe on the final day in the 1786 kitchen at the Visitor Center at Hall Tavern.

The all-inclusive registration fee includes course materials, meals and four nights (Sunday-Thursday) lodging at the Deerfield Inn. Fee for double occupancy: $765; fee for single occupancy: $1,115; fee for commuter: $415 (no lodging and breakfast); fee for traveling companion (not attending workshop) with a double occupancy participant: $440.

Fall 2012 - Spring 2013

Tuesday April 9th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Mohamed Maenaoui will take us through the history of the Foods of Morocco


Morocco produces a large range of Mediterranean fruits and vegetables and even some tropical ones. Common meats include beef, mutton and lamb, chicken, camel, rabbit, and seafood which serve as a base for the cuisine. Characteristic flavorings include lemon pickle, cold-pressed, unrefined olive oil and dried fruits. It is also known for being far more heavily spiced than most Middle Eastern Cuisine. However, this representation may be misguided since most Morroccan dishes are not hot spicy, but complex blends of flavors, recently accompanied by the traditional Tunisian fiery condiment Harissa.

Mohamed Maenaoui will take us on a journey through the flavors, traditions, complexity of his fascinating ancestral cuisine.

Tuesday May 14th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Glenn Mack will provide a photographic survey of Central Asian foodway
and its role in nationalism along the Silk Road.

Kazak Woman

Please join us for a photographic survey of Central Asian foodways and its role in nationalism along the Silk Road. Dr. Mack will provide an overview the region's culinary culture based on his travel and work in Chinese and post-Soviet Central Asia during the last 25 years.

Dr. Glenn R. Mack is an educator, author, cook, and researcher. Originally trained as a Sovietologist, Glenn covered the Soviet Union as a photo editor for 7 years in Moscow and New York with Time Magazine. After the fall of the USSR, he spent a year in Central Asia studying the culinary culture and history of the region.

Saturday June 1st 2013
Milton House at Newbury College, noon - 3 PM.

The 2013 Culinary Historians of Boston BanqueT

Has Been Cancelled!!

Moroccan Spices

The CHOB Annual Banquet provides an opportunity for members to enjoy studying, preparing, and (of course) eating foods from a specific historical period or region.

This year, the Historians are taking on the challenging cuisine of Morocco. Starting with Mohammed Meoumani's presentation in April, members will choose or be assigned recipes for the full range of Morroccan cooking from appetizer, main, and dessert courses to breads and beverages. The vast variety of spices and combinations represented by this refined North African cuisine.

End of 2012-2013 Season

Tuesday November 13th  2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Barbara Anderson Rotger from the Gastronomy Program at BU will discuss her Recipe Box.


Barbara Rotger has had a passion for food for as long as she can remember. She has followed that passion through gastronomy courses, completing her Masters degree and subsequently working at the Gastronomy Program at BU.

In this presentation she will share some of her path through the wonderful world of gastronomy as well as some of the cherished recipes she has collected along the way.

Tuesday December 4th 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Joseph M. Carlin will discuss his new book Cocktails: A Global History (Reaktion Books - Edible).

Gimlet, negroni, manhattan, Long Island ice tea, flirtini, hurricane, screwdriver—cocktails have come a long way from their first incarnation in the seventeenth century, when rum punch was everyone’s go-to drink. Originally made of five ingredients, including a spirit, sugar, and spices, “cocktail” now refers to any drink made of liquor and a mixer. In this talk, Joseph M. Carlin will describe how his book Cocktails: A Global History (Reaktion Books - Edible) uncovers how many of our favorite cocktails were invented and describe how this most American of alcoholic beverages—but most international of drinks—came to influence society around the world.

Tuesday January 15th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Joan Nathan will share her thoughts on Food, History, and unbreakable link
between beliefs, family, and food.


Inspired by her own family history, Ms. Nathan set off to learn more about the often hidden history and foods of French Jews.  Within this rich agricultural country, Ashkenazic, Sephardic, and Provençal Jewish food developed side by side and often melded with French regional cooking.  While the Jews of Alsace cooked with goose fat and sauerkraut, those of the south cooked with oil and garlic. Since some Jewish families in Provence, for instance, have been there for over two thousand years, it is hard to differentiate Jewish from Provençal food customs. Fougasse, a bread with holes, traditionally mixed, kneaded and shaped at home, then brought to a communal oven for baking was, for example, the holiday bread for Jews. This diversity of origin goes beyond region and all blend together in the French people, including its Jews.


Cookbook Conf

The Roger Smith Cookbook Conference is scheduled for February 7- 9, 2013 at The Roger Smith Hotel in New York City. It is an eclectic gathering of those who publish, write, edit, agent, research, or simply buy and use cookbooks. On Thursday, February 7, five workshops will explore issues in researching, reading and publishing cookbooks: Introduction to Cookbook Publishing; Reading Cookbooks: A Structured Approach and Structured Dialogue with Barbara Ketcham Wheaton; The Wild World of Self-Publishing; and The Way to Look: How to Do Research with Cookbooks, and Cookbook Publishing 360. (There is a separate registration fee for the workshops. Pre-registration is a must; no walk-ins.) Friday and Saturday, February 8-9, are the core of the conference program with 32 panels. On each day, concurrent sessions will take place on a broad and stimulating range of topics, from manuscript cookery books and class and politics in cookbooks, to cookbooks in the digital age and the culinary app. Join 103 writers, publishers, editors, agents and academics in New York in February. Explore the exciting list of participants and read many of their bios at: http:// cookbookconf.com/participants

Conference registration includes lunch, coffee, and receptions for both Friday and Saturday.
For more information and to register, go to: http://cookbookconf.com or email us at cookbookconf@gmail.com with questions. --


Tuesday February 26th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Jeri Quinzio will discuss her book History of Pudding


Jeri Quinzio is a long time member and friend of the Culinary Historians of Boston. She is also a freelance writer specializing in food history and the author of Of Sugar and Snow: A History of Ice Cream Making.

In this presentation, she will provide a heart-warming discussion on Pudding - the topic of her most recent book: Pudding: A Global History (Reaktion Books - Edible)

Pudding: A Global History explains how puddings developed from their early savory, sausage-like mixtures into the sweet and sticky confections we are now familiar with, and he describes how advances in kitchen equipment have changed puddings over time.


!!!!! Every Dish Has A Past: A Workshop in Historic Recipe Research
        March 18, 2013 - March 20, 2013, 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
The deadline for registration is March 1, 2013 !!!

Our March speaker, Sandra L. Oliver, noted food historian and celebrated author, will lead an intensive three-day workshop in historic recipe research in Deerfield, MA. Each participant selects a recipe and an alternative they would like to research. Class time is divided between lecture and discussion time, and Oliver will teach a method of conducting the research. Each participant will use a combination of resources both real—books in the room—and virtual—on-line resources via computer—to conduct research. Participants are encouraged to bring a computer with wireless capacity. The workshop concludes with a cooking afternoon to test your recipe on the final day in the 1786 kitchen at the Visitor Center at Hall Tavern.
Registration includes 3 nights stay Sunday, March 17 to Wednesday (morning), March 20 at the Deerfield Inn Carriage House and all meals. Commuter registration option available. Traveling companions not attending the workshop may come and share in meals for an extra cost. The workshop is limited to 15 participants.
To learn more or to register, go to: Every Dish Has Past Workshop


Tuesday March 5th 2013, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Sandy Oliver will discuss her book “Maine Home Cooking”

Maine Home Cooking

What You Need Know About Maine Food. Since moving to her Maine island home twenty-five years ago, food writer and historian Sandy Oliver has had to learn a thing or two about Maine food traditions. Then while assembling her newest book, Maine Home Cooking, quite a few insights came gradually into focus. In her talk, Sandy will sum up her education so far.

Culinary Historians of Boston 2012 Schedule:

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Ina Lipkowitz, professor of English at MIT will explore
the stories behind 5 of our most basic food words

Words to Eat by

Ina Lipkowitz, professor of English at MIT where she leads classes on fiction and the Bible, will be our February speaker. Her book, Words to Eat by, explores the stories behind 5 of our most basic food words, words that reveal our powerful associations with certain foods. The book tells a remarkable story about the evolution of our language and culinary history. Using sources that range from Roman histories to Julia Childs’ recipes, lyrical which shows how saturated with French and Italian names the English culinary vocabulary is. But the words for our most basic foodstuffs-bread, milk, leek, meat, and Apple-are still rooted in Old English. The Wall Street Journal review called the book “a hymn into the comforting, honest pleasures of food and at the same time a perceptive account of the ways in which many of our tastes were determined hundreds and indeed thousands of years ago.”

Monday, March 12th, 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Susanne E. Freiberg on Freshness.


That rosy tomato perched on your plate in December is at the end of a great journey—not just over land and sea, but across a vast and varied cultural history. This is the territory charted in Fresh. Opening the door of an ordinary refrigerator, Susanne E. Freidberg tells the curious story of the quality stored inside: freshness.

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Lobster: A Global History


Summer Shack’s Jasper White, writing for The Wall Street Journal, had this to say about CHB member Elisabeth Townsend’s book on lobsters. “Elisabeth Townsend’s concise but rich Lobster: A Global History offers a journey through lobster’s prehistoric and recorded history, exploring scientific, environmental and culinary matters. . . . She also does an outstanding job of documenting and explaining the modern controversy over the treatment of lobster: Is boiling alive inhumane, for instance, and if so what method might be better? . . . Most of all, [this books reminds] us that our long relationship with lobsters is tied up with our relationships with one another.”J. Elizabeth Towsend will give a talk on her book.



Nancy Harmon Jenkins invites you to join her and Chef Roberto (“Jerry”) Zanieri for a magical six-day full immersion in the delights of springtime Tuscany:
An Extra-Virgin Intensive for Food Writers, Chefs, and Others Interested in Deepening Their Experience of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

When: May 20 to 26, 2012
Where: Villa Campestri Olive Oil Resort in the green rolling hills of the Mugello northeast of Florence
What: An unusual opportunity to expand and deepen your knowledge of extra-virgin olive oil.

For more information see: AmorOlio

Tuesday, September 11th 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Patricia Herlihy, author of Vodka: A Global History will talk about
Vodka's rise from potato juice to international stardom

History of Vodka

In her book, Patricia Herlihy takes you for a ride through vodka’s history, from its mysterious origins in a Slavic country in the fourteenth century to its current transatlantic reign over Europe and North America. She reveals how it continued to flourish despite hurdles like American Prohibition and being banned in Russia on the eve of World War I. On its way to global domination, vodka became ingrained in Eastern European culture, especially in Russia, where standards in vodka production were first set. Illustrated with photographs, paintings, and graphic art, Vodka will catch the eye of any reader intrigued by how “potato juice” became an international industry.

Monday October 15th 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Andy Smith, author of American Tuna: The Rise and Fall of an Improbable Food will provide a
lively account of the American tuna industry over the past century.

American Tuna

In his lively account of the American tuna industry over the past century, celebrated food writer and scholar Andrew F. Smith relates how tuna went from being sold primarily as a fertilizer to becoming the most commonly consumed fish in the country. In his book, American Tuna, the so-called "chicken of the sea" is both the subject and the backdrop for other facets of American history: U.S. foreign policy, immigration and environmental politics, and dietary trends.

Culinary Historians of Boston Oct 2011 - Jan 2012 Schedule:

Barbara Wheaton

Nancy Harmon Jenkins invites you to:
An Extra-Virgin Intensive for Food Writers, Chefs, and Others Interested in Deepening Their Experience of Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

When: October 15 to 21, 2011
Where: Villa Campestri Olive Oil Resort in the green rolling hills of the Mugello northeast of Florence
What: An unusual opportunity to expand and deepen your knowledge of extra-virgin olive oil. Read More

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Champagne: A Global History

Champagne: A Global History

Author and CHB member Becky Sue Epstein will discuss her new book, Champagne: A Global History. In the book, she discusses Champagne’s history and the celebrities who made it famous - from Dom Perignon to the widow Veuve Cliquot. She also discusses the difference between Champagne and sparkling wine. And she answers questions such as – Is French Champagne really better than other sparkling wines? How does the wine get fizzy? And why does it stay that way? Ms. Epstein is also the author of The American Lighthouse Cookbook (Sourcebooks/Cumberland, co-written with Chef Ed Jackson).

Monday, November 14th, 2011, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Catching fire & the impact of cooking for households

Catching Fire Cooking Made Human

Richard W. Wrangham, the Ruth B. Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology at Harvard University's Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology and author of Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human. His talk is titled “Cooking and the shaping of the household.” Cooking is a cultural universal, and in all but the most exceptional circumstances cooked food is an obligatory component of the human diet. Cross-culturally cooking is also the most female-gendered of all domestic activities, since the responsibility to produce an evening meal normally falls on wives. I argue that the gendered structure of the human household arose largely as a result of the biological requirement for cooked food, because this system both allowed wives’ resources to be socially protected from petty theft, and also gave husbands predictable evening nourishment. Historical changes in gender roles within urban households show that this system is not biologically embedded. Recent developments in food practices in the urban industrialized world, including cheap restaurant meals and pre-cooked meals, may be particularly important influences on the breakdown of traditional domestic gender roles.

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Northern Hospitality: cooking by the book in New England

Northern Hospitality: cooking by the book in New England

Longtime CHB members Kathleen Fitzgerald and Keith Stavely will discuss their latest book, Northern Hospitality: cooking by the book in New England. The book includes nearly 400 annotated recipes dating from the seventeenth to the twentieth century. The authors explore the methods and meanings of the recipes for everything from pottage to pie crust, from caudle to calf's head.

Robert S. Cox, author of Body and Soul: A Sympathetic History of American Spiritualism, called Northern Hospitality “elegantly written, well-conceived, and compelling…a delight to read.”

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Tea master Allan Palmer will demonstrate and discuss “chanoyu.”

Chanoyu Tea Ceremony

Tea master Allan Palmer will demonstrate and discuss the 400-year-old Japanese tea ceremony, “chanoyu.” He will describe the symbolic importance of the various implements used in the ceremony and share some details about the highly structured meal that is served before tea called kaiseki. Mr. Palmer says of the tea cermony, “Although Chanoyu is primarily a social act, it is filled with deep spiritual significance and symbolism.”

(image taken from Wikipedia: Japanese Tea Ceremony)

Culinary Historians of Boston Spring 2010 Schedule:

Tuesday, April 5th, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library
Marylene Altieri will give a talk on the “Schlesinger Library's Culinary Collection and the current state of culinary studies at Harvard.”

Monday, March 21, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library

Starving the South

Andy Smith will talk on “Starving the South: How the North won."

See: http://andrewfsmith.com/

Tuesday, February 15, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library

Delicious Simplicity Cover Anna Tourkakis, author of the recent book “Delicious Simplicity” , will talk about modifying recipes and how she applied those principles of recipe modification to develop many of the recipes in her cookbook. “Delicious Simplicity” boasts many delicious good for you recipes that are quick and easy to prepare and especially suitable for today's busy life.

Culinary Historians of Boston Fall 2011 Schedule:

Saturday, September 17, 2011
Les Dames d'Escoffier have invited us to their annual fundraiser Feast on a Farm, with a charity auction
6:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Verrill Farm 11 Wheeler Road
Concord, MA 01742

Les Dames d'Escoffier Feast on a Farm

Les Dames d'Escoffier, Boston Chapter is sponsoring a Green Tables event to promote foods grown on local farms. Green Tables is an initiative of Les Dames d'Escoffier International which showcases the work of LDEI chapters engaged in linking urban and rural farms and gardens to school, restaurant and kitchen tables. Please explore the resources and tools they offer to further this initiative in your community, and join us as we celebrate the work underway. Dinner includes locally raised beef from Open Meadow Farm, pork from Blood Farm and Verrill Farm produce, all paired with wines from Gordon’s Fine Wines and M. S. Walker, Harpoon Beers, Sangria and soft drinks. Why go to the supermarket for foods shipped from distant factory farms when you can feed your family nutritious, locally grown food? You can purchase meats that come from humanely-raised, pasture-fed animals which is important to their health and yours. Come and see why it benefits you to support your local farms, and have fun at the same time! See Feast on a Farm for more info.

Monday, September 19th, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library

The Food Axis

Architectural historian Elizabeth Cromley will speak about her new book The Food Axis: Cooking, Eating, and the Architecture of American Houses. Blending architectural and social history with the necessity—and the passion—for food, Ms. Cromley examines the development of the American house by viewing it through one very specific lens: the food axis. She traces changes in food spaces through the years and explores the habits surrounding all aspects of food in the home. Professor of Architectural History at Northeastern University, Ms. Cromley is the author of Alone Together: A History of New York’s Early Apartments and coauthor, with Thomas Carter, of Invitation to Vernacular Architecture: A Guide to the Study of Ordinary Buildings and Landscapes.

Culinary Historians of Boston Fall 2010 Schedule:

Monday, September 20, 6 p.m., Schlesinger Library

Invention of the Cookbook Sandra Sherman's book Invention of the Modern Cookbook is the first study to examine the question of how cookbooks came about, discussing the roots of these collections in 17th-century England and illuminating the cookbook's role as it has evolved over time. In this discussion, she will explore this topic and provide graphic examples of the modern cookbook's development.

Saturday October 23, 2010 10:00am-2:00pm
Walking Tour of Boston’s “Latin Quarter”
with Culinary Historians of Boston member Madonna Berry
Join culinary arts instructor and food historian Madonna Berry on this guided food tour of Boston’s “Latin Quarter” located in the Hyde Square neighborhood of Jamaica Plain. Within Boston’s “Latin Quarter” is a rich mix of Latino cultures including Dominican, Mexican, Salvadorian, and Guatemalan. An estimated 85% of the businesses located here are Latino owned. As we walk through the neighborhood Madonna will introduce you to her favorite grocery stores, bodegas, specialty markets, bakeries and ethnic restaurants. During the tour enjoy progressive sampling of foods.

Meet at El Oriental de Cuba Restaurant,416 Centre St. (corner of Paul Gore) Jamaica Plain, MA. Members $40.00 Non-members $45.00
All proceeds support the Culinary Historians of Boston

Please reserve by email at historian@culinaryhistoriansboston.com and send payments to Culinary Historians of Boston POB 381926 Cambridge MA 02238.

Tuesday, October 26th
Joe Carlin, member of our Board of Directors, will give a talk on “Clams”

Tuesday, November 9th

Breaking Bread: Recipes and Stories from Immigrant Kitchens

Lynne C. Anderson will give a talk on her new book “Breaking Bread: Recipes and Stories from Immigrant Kitchens” Through stories of hand-rolled pasta and homemade chutney, local markets and backyard gardens, and wild mushrooms and foraged grape leaves—this book recounts in loving detail the memories, recipes, and culinary traditions of people who have come to the United States from around the world. Chef and teacher Lynne Anderson has gone into immigrant kitchens and discovered the power of food to recall a lost world for those who have left much behind. The enticing, easy-to-prepare recipes feature specialties like Greek dolmades, Filipino adobo, Brazilian peixada, and Sudanese mulukhiyah. Together with Robin Radin’s beautiful photographs, these stories and recipes will inspire cooks of all levels to explore new traditions while perhaps rediscovering their own culinary roots.

Note: At this meeting we were told about the Food News Journal by Marylène Altieri and promised a link. Here it is: Food News Journal Home Page

Culinary Historians of Boston Spring 2011 Schedule:

Wednesday, March 2nd
Andy Smith will talk on “Starving the South: How the North won."

Tuesday, April 5th
Marylene Altieri will give a talk on the “Schlesinger Library's Culinary Collection and the current state of culinary studies at Harvard.”

Other Events

Fall of 2010
Harvard University Science & Cooking Public Lectures
The Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (“SEAS”) and the Alícia Foundation have developed a new General Education science course, “Science and Cooking: From Haute Cuisine to the Science of Soft Matter.” The course will use food and cooking to explicate fundamental principles in applied physics and engineering. Limited to currently enrolled Harvard undergraduates, the class will bring together eminent Harvard researchers and world-class chefs, including Wylie Dufresne of wd-50 and Dan Barber of Blue Hill, as well as food scholar and writer Harold McGee, one of the leading authorities on kitchen science. See:

Also: Public talks by world-class chefs
All of the future talks will be streamed LIVE. We will post videos of the talks online in the coming weeks. We are very pleased to offer these talks free to the community and are sorry that we cannot accommodate everyone who wants to attend.

September 5, 2010-January 20, 2011

CABINET OF CULINARY CURIOSITIES Neilson Library, Smith College, Northampton MA Morgan Gallery (1st floor) and Book Arts Gallery (3rd floor).

Six recipes for puff pastry from 1669 to 1970. Eating ice cream in France in the late 19th century. Dining with gladiatorial entertainment. These are just three of the offerings in Cabinet of Culinary Curiosities: Books & Manuscripts from the Mortimer Rare Book Room. Other items on display feature: a tribute to Julia Child and her fellow Smith College classmate, cooking teacher, and writer, Charlotte Turgeon; Jack Sprat and the space race; cooking and dining for kings, queens, and mice; and French opinions about Chinese food and table manners. Cabinet of Curiosities is on view in Neilson Library, Smith College, until January 20, 2011. This array of more than fifty culinary curiosities from books and manuscripts features images and descriptions of food and eating from the 16th through the 21st centuries. A cabinet of curiosities is a private collection of esoterica from the realms of natural history, geology, archaeology, religious relics, artwork, and antiquity. The classic style of these cabinets emerged in the 16th century as one or more rooms overflowing with fascinating objects.

Cabinet of Culinary Curiosities was created as a component of Table for Ten: The Art, History and Science of Food, a series of exhibitions and events organized for the fall of 2010 by Museums10, a group of museum and historical sites here in the Pioneer Valley. Most of the items in the exhibition are from the Mortimer Rare Book Room; a few gems have been borrowed from the Smith College Archives and the curator’s own culinary collection.

For more information on Cabinet of Culinary Curiosities: Barbara Blumenthal, Mortimer Rare Book Room (x2906; bblument@smith.edu)

For more information about Museums10 or Table for Ten: www.museums10.org

Monday, November 1st at the Hotel Northampton in Northampton, MA."The French Connection: A Gala Tribute to Julia Child & Charlotte Turgeon"
This event, featuring panelists, food, videos, and more, is part of "Table for Ten: The Art, History and Science of Food," a series of exhibitions and events this fall in western Mass. "Table for Ten" has been organized by Museums10, a consortium of western Mass. museums and historic sites.

More information is available on WGBY's (Springfield, MA public tv) website: http://www.wgby.org/events/frenchconnection.html

October 28–29, 2010
"Why Books?," at Radcliffe probes the form and function of the book in a rapidly changing media ecology. Speakers will examine the public-policy implications of new media forms and explore some of the major functions that we identify with books today. The Friday conference will be preceded by a series of Thursday afternoon workshops which will take speakers and preregistered participants on “site visits” to various local institutions, including a printing press, a conservation lab, a digital humanities center, and special collections of books and manuscripts. Barbara Wheaton and Marylène Altieri are offering a workshop titled “A Taste of History.” Registration is required by October 15. To learn more and to register, go to -- www.radcliffe.edu.

Through February 28, 2011
“Dinner is Served! Dining and the Decorative Arts”
At Historic Deerfield. Explores the social, cultural and artistic importance of dining in early America. To learn more, go to -- www.historic-deerfield.org

Through March 20, 2011
“A Feast for the Eyes”
At The Eric Carle Museum, Amherst. An exhibit exploring the role food plays throughout children’s literature.

For information on other events in the Five Colleges area, go to --www.paradisecityarts.com

Fall 2009 Schedule:

Jennifer Pustz, who is one of the authors of America's Kitchens, published
by the Historic New England. will discuss the history of American's kitchens from the Colonial period to the present. Schlesinger library, Thursday Sept. 10, 6-8 p.m.

Betty Fussell, award winning author will discuss her book Raising Steaks:
The life and Times of American Beef.
The book is promoted as a red-blooded answer to Michael Pollan. Schlesinger library, Wednesday, Oct. 21, 6-8 p.m.


Andy Smith, a frequent speaker and prolific and encyclopedic author of food history books will discuss his latest work: Eating History: Thirty Turning Points in the Making of American Cuisine. Schlesinger library, Thursday, Nov. 5, 6-8 p.m.

Weslie Janeway, co-author of Mrs Charles Darwin's Recipe Book will discuss the cuisine and life of one of Victorian England's most prominent families.

Schlesinger library, Wednesday, Dec. 9, 6-8 p.m.

Spring 2010 Schedule:

Tuesday, February 23, 6-8 p.m.
Andrew Coe
, will trace the intriguing story of chop suey and America's centuries-long encounter with Chinese food. In his book: Chop Suey: A Cultural History of Chinese Food in the United States, Mr. Coe tells how Americans went from believing that Chinese meals contained dogs and rats to making regular pilgrimages to the neighborhood chop suey parlor.
Along this journey, Mr. Coe shows how the peasant food of an obscure part of China came to dominate Chinese-American restaurants, unravels the truth of chop suey's origin, and shows how Nixon's 1972 trip to China opened our palates to a new world of cuisine. He also explains why we still can't get dishes like the ones restaurants serve in China. Most important, the book shows how larger historical forces - the belief in Manifest Destiny, the American assertion of military might in the Pacific, and the country's postWWII rise to superpower status - shape our tastes.
Schlesinger library, Tuesday, Feb 23, 6-8 p.m.

Tuesday, March 23, 6-8 p.m.
Merry White
, Professor of Anthropology at Boston University, will discuss coffee and cafes in Japan, the topic of her forthcoming book. Ms. White writes frequently as a journalist in several fields, including culinary studies.
She also works with Cambodian coffee farmers to help produce and sell their coffee
beans, particularly in Japan, as a project in community development. She presently is
engaged in research on urban social spaces and social change in Japan, particularly on the history of the cafe.
Her publications include Perfectly Japanese: Making Families in an Era of Upheaval;
The Material Child: Coming of Age in Japan and America; The Japanese Educational
Challenge and The Japanese Overseas.

Schlesinger library, Tuesday, Mar 23, 6-8 p.m.

Wednesday, April 21, 6-8 p.m.
Stephen Cole and Lindy Gifford
, Transformed from a wild fruit to a cultivated commodity, the American cranberry contains equal amounts of holiday symbolism and antioxidants. Its evolution over the past century is a surprising story of risk, enterprise, conflict, and the tension between tradition and innovation. In their book, The Cranberry: Hard Work and Holiday Sauce, Mr. Cole and Ms. Gifford harvest stories, images, and observations to tell the unusual tale of an American subculture dominated by this tart little red fruit.
Stephen A. Cole directs the natural resources and sustainable communities programs at Coastal Enterprises, Inc., a community-development corporation. He is co-author of I Was Content and Not Content: The Story of Linda Lord and the Closing of Penobscot Poultry and The Rangeley and Its Region: The Famous Boat and Lakes of Western Maine.
Lindy Gifford is an independent graphic designer and photographer. In addition to the book design for The Cranberry, she did much of the photography and historical research. She has also designed books for Tilbury House, Down East Books, WoodenBoat, and other publishers.

Schlesinger library, Wednesday, Apr 21, 6-8 p.m.

Monday, May 3, 6-8 p.m.
Gillian Riley
, is a critically acclaimed food historian and a former typographer, who has written many books on food in art, including Renaissance Recipes and Impressionistic Picnics. She is the author of A Feast for the Eyes, the National Gallery Cookbook, and of The Oxford Companion to Italian Food.

Ms. Riley will discuss the still life paintings of Luis Meléndez and what they tell us about the foods of 18th century Spain. A London resident, she contributes regularly to the Oxford Food Symposium.

Schlesinger library, Monday, May 3, 6-8 p.m.

Sunday, May 23, noon-3 p.m.
Culinary Historians of Boston 2010 Banquet

This year, the annual banquet will continue our three-year-long theme of tracing the foods of the Triangular Trade. Last year’s banquet featured foods appropriate to a New England tavern in the 18th century. This year, the focus will be on the foods of the British Empire from 1650-1775. The banquet will take place in Mitton House at Newbury College on Sunday May 23, 2010, from noon until 3:00 pm. To learn more about the foods of this era or to share your knowledge, join the committee and get involved with the research, menu planning, and cooking that makes for a successful and lively event. More details will be announced at upcoming meetings and on the website. Meanwhile, mark your calendars and look forward to another fascinating banquet.

Milton House at Newbury College, Sunday, May 23, noon-3 p.m.

The Schlesinger Library at the Radcliffe Institute is just west of Harvard Square. Their website has a useful map and directions.

Monday, May 3, 6-8 p.m.
Gillian Riley
, is a critically acclaimed food historian and a former typographer, who has written many books on food in art, including Renaissance Recipes and Impressionistic Picnics. She is the author of A Feast for the Eyes, the National Gallery Cookbook, and of The Oxford Companion to Italian Food.

Ms. Riley will discuss the still life paintings of Luis Meléndez and what they tell us about the foods of 18th century Spain. A London resident, she contributes regularly to the Oxford Food Symposium.

Schlesinger library, Monday, May 3, 6-8 p.m.


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Copyright © 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 by Culinary Historians of Boston. Button images adapted from from Miss Parloa's Kitchen Companion (1887), The New Franklin Primer and First Reader (1885), and St. Nicholas magazine, March 1877.