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Jun 24, 2008 12:19 PM

Feeding America - 75 online cookbooks published between 1798 and 1922

Very cool website with full cookbooks

There's the original 1896 The Boston Cooking-School Cookbook By Fannie Merritt Farmer

In addition to the entire cookbook there are great summararies about the history and contents of the book ... for example ...

"The publishers, Little, Brown, evidently afraid of losing money on a cookbook, required Fannie to pay for the first printing herself; however, she also kept ownership of the copyright on the book. Thus, she became wealthy while Little, Brown must to this day regret its error"

Some interesting titles

La Cuisine Creole, By: Lafcadio Hearn
A Collection of Culinary Recipes from Leading Chefs and Noted Creole Housewives, Who Have Made New Orleans Famous for its Cuisine.

Good Things to Eat. By: Rufus Estes
Estes was born a slave in 1857 and became a chef for the Pullman Company. In addition to a brief autobiography, recipes include ginger sherbet, candied violets, Scotch snipe, Roasted Canvasback Duck and Guernsey cheese souffle.

The Hotel St. Francis Cook Book. By: Victor Hirtzler
"Hirtzler, who can be considered one of the early "celebrity chefs", presented seasonal menus, highly sophisticated dining and included local California foods such as California oysters, sand dabs, and San Francisco Squabs."

The International Jewish Cookbook: By: Florence Kreisler Greenbaum
1600 Recipes According To The Jewish Dietary Laws With The Rules For Kashering: The Favorite Recipes Of America, Austria, Germany, Russia, France, Poland, Roumania, Ect., Ect.

The Great Western Cook Book, Or Table Receipts, Adapted to Western Housewifery.
By: Anna Maria Collins

The Oriental Cook Book; Wholesome, Dainty, and Economical Dishes of the Orient, Especially Adapted to American Tastes and Methods of Preparation. By: Ardashes Hagop Keoleian

La Cuisine Francaise. By: Francois Tanty
French Cooking for Every home. Adapted to American Requirements.

Fullständigaste Svensk-Amerikansk Kokbok" Swedish-English Cookbook "

Zuni BreadstuffBy: Frank Hamilton Cushing

Dishes and Beverages of the Old South By: Martha McCulloch Williams

The Epicurean ., and a Selection of Interesting Bills of Fare of Delmonico's from 1862 to 1894 By: Charles Ranhofer

Mary At The Farm And Book Of Recipes Compiled During Her Visit Among The "Pennsylvania Germans," By Edith M. Thomas. With Illustrations..By: Edith M. Thomas

The Market Assistant, Containing a Brief Description of Every Article of Human Food Sold in the Public Markets of the Cities of New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Brooklyn...
By: Thomas Farrington De Voe

Science In The Kitchen: A Scientific Treatise on Food Substances and Their Dietetic Properties, Together with a Practical Explanation of the Principles of Healthful Cookery, and a Large Number of Original, Palatable, and Wholesome Recipes.
By: E. E. Kellogg

One of my favorite titles ...

The Cook Not Mad, or Rational Cookery
Being A Collection of Original and Selected Receipts, Embracing Not Only the Art of Curing Various Kinds of Meats and Vegetables for Future Use, but of Cooking in its General Acceptation, to the Taste, Habits, and Degrees of Luxury, Prevalent with the American Publick, in Town and Country.

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  1. What an incredible resource. Thanks for posting. I have a feeling many of us will be up late tonight looking at all these priceless books :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: VTtoMAtoCAfoodie

      What a great find!! Thanks for sharing.

    2. My favorite cookbook in this collection is"Aunt Babette's" Cook Book: Foreign and Domestic Receipts for the Household: A Valuable Collection of Receipts and Hints for the Housewife, Many of Which Are Not to be Found Elsewhere. By: "Aunt Babette" Published in 1889. This is actually a very good Jewish cookbook with lots of traditional Jewish recipes -- the "Easter" section is particularly interesting -- all the recipes in the chapter are for Passover.

      Another very interesting book in this collection is "Chinese-Japanese Cook Book." By: Sara Bosse and Watanna Onoto [Pseud.] It was published in 1914 and contains some surprisingly good recipes.

      I've gone back again and again to read and search the books in the collection since I found it in about 2003 -- it never ceases to fascinate me. Thanks for telling folks here about it, rw.


      1 Reply
      1. re: Nancy Berry

        It is fun to see a reference to Aunt Babette! The recipes in that book are generally regarded to be excellent. (For example I've read that her gefilte fish, aka "boneless fish, filled" is outstanding.) It should be noted, however, that it's very much a product of its 19th-century classical-Reform German-Jewish background, meaning that it doesn't keep Kosher in a meaningful way. (Check out the chapter labelled "fish and oysters"!) More traditionally observant Jews started showing up in bigger numbers in the 20th century, and eventually the publisher (Bloch Publishing) brought out Mrs. Greenbaum's more conscientiously observant "Jewish Cook Book" (also on the MSU website) to replace it. After some 20 years, Mrs. Greenbaum's book was in turn supplanted by Mildred Grosberg Bellin's "The Jewish Cook Book" which is still in copyright and at least somewhat available. (As I've mentioned once or twice around here, Mrs. Bellin was my grandmother; she died earlier this year at age 99.)

        Anyway, the Michigan State website is wonderful, isn't it! It's a great resource for culinary history (a subject I've been dabbling in a bit lately) as well as for good cooking.

      2. I was up til 3 am surfing this site! Fascinating! I've redacted recipes for medieval and rennaisance feasts and had a great time doing it. Thanks for the link to another historical period!

        1. Even better, MSU's special collections thinned out their actual cookbooks last year. Since the surplus store was selling them for $2 each or 6 for $10, you don't want to know how many vintage cookbooks I added to my collection...but lets just say it was a lot. Toward the end they got smart and started charging higher prices, based on some used book pricing guide, but the $2 per book was good while it last.

          1. Also, a special thank you to you, Rworange, for taking the time to type all the highlights and reviews!! Your posts are always such well written thoughtful contributions!