Cooking by the Book in New England
A lively introduction to New England cooks, cookbooks, and recipes
If you think traditional New England cooking is little more than baked beans and clam chowder, think again. In this enticing anthology of almost 400 historic New England recipes from the seventeenth to the early twentieth century, you will be treated to such dishes as wine-soaked bass served with oysters and cranberries, roast shoulder of lamb seasoned with sweet herbs, almond cheesecake infused with rosewater, robust Connecticut brown bread, zesty ginger nuts, and high-peaked White Mountain cake.
Beginning with four chapters placing the region's best-known cookbook authors and their works in nuanced historical context, Keith Stavely and Kathleen Fitzgerald then proceed to offer a ten-chapter cornucopia of culinary temptation. Readers can sample regional offerings grouped into the categories of the liquid one-pot meal, fish, fowl, meat and game, pie, pudding, bread, and cake. Recipes are presented in their original textual forms and are accompanied by commentaries designed to make them more accessible to the modern reader. Each chapter, and each section within each chapter, is also prefaced by a brief introductory essay. From pottage to pie crust, from caudle to calf's head, historic methods and obscure meanings are thoroughly—sometimes humorously—explained.
Going beyond reprints of single cookbooks and bland adaptations of historic recipes, this richly contextualized critical anthology puts the New England cooking tradition on display in all its unexpected--and delicious--complexity. Northern Hospitality will equip readers with all the tools they need for both historical understanding and kitchen adventure.
"Northern Hospitality is a big book . . . filled with information and recipes that will enlighten and enthrall anyone interested in food, cooking, or social history."—ForeWord
"Stavely and Fitzgerald have provided a lively, well-researched follow up to their classic tome on New England cuisine, America's Founding Food. . . . A must have for New England public and academic libraries and large libraries with substantial American history and culinary collections. . . . Highly recommended. All academic, general, and professional readers."—Choice
"Our favorite book of the year may be Northern Hospitality: Cooking by the Book in New England. In it Keith Stavely and Kathleen Fitzgerald address 'the complex, colorful, sometimes controversial story of New England cooking' through an unorthodox approach. Northern Hospitality profiles most of the more influential Yankee cookbook authors from the first three centuries of European settlement, then the remaining two thirds of the book reproduces their recipes with trenchant and often amused commentary. Our brief description here cannot convey the startling clarity of the prose. If you give away only one book this year, make it this one and hope that somebody returns the favor."—British Food in America
"In this innovative study, part recipe anthology and part analytical investigation, Keith Stavely and Kathleen Fitzgerald attempt to unravel the process by which New England domestic cooks developed a distinctive and varied cuisine out of the initial encounter between cookery books brought from the old country and the ingredients found on the North Eastern coast of America."—The London Times Literary Supplement
"The book [Northern Hospitality] serves up a fascinating main course in pre- and post-colonial history with an equally intriguing side dish of archaic recipes, and modern day adaptations with step-by-step instructions."—Cambridge Cooks
"Northern Hospitality: Cooking by the Book in New England digs into the antecedents of what we think of as traditional New England cookery, and what they uncover may come as a surprise to those who think of the region's classic dishes as bland and uninspired."—The Boston Globe
"While it can function as a cookbook, Northern Hospitality also would make an excellent textbook in food studies and American Studies classrooms. More importantly, it is significant beyond New England cultural history in that it shows how a regional food culture develops over time and in relationship to wider national history."—Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture