Along with inheriting genes, our cultural legacy influences our whole life. Join author and culinary anthropologist Joanna Pruess and learn how exploring your roots and passing the information forward can enlighten you and enrich future generations.
Her talk will include techniques for gathering records, creating oral histories, locating cultural documents from early immigrant groups, and using online resources like the Mormon genealogy software. You will learn how organizations like Fundación la Puerta, in Tecate, and UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, are helping to preserve the material and cultural histories of different ethnic groups.
Understanding your cultural legacy will help you appreciate your family’s unique style of observing birthdays and weddings as well as traditional holidays such as Easter and Hanukah, and national holidays like Cinco de Mayo in Puebla, Mexico. For many of us, one of our most cherished cultural legacies is the special food of our family. “Cooking from Memory’s Kitchen” was created by Joanna Pruess to help capture and preserve beloved recipes in a format that can be used by everyone.
PART II: Cooking from Memory’s Kitchen: Writing a Cookbook to Preserve Family Recipes
Many people think that to write a cookbook all you have to do is collect a bunch of recipes, put them in your computer, and go from there. But, if you want future generations to be able to recreate dishes that taste and look as they did originally, it's not that simple, as Joanna Pruess can tell you after writing ten cookbooks.
Two sequential workshops:
Workshop 1: Documenting recipes
You'll learn the professional way to accurately measure ingredients, describe cooking techniques, and write recipes in a user-friendly style, as well as how a recipe should be tested. Together we will look at a list of ingredients that need to be compiled into a workable format and we will write them up as a recipe. Additionally, we will discuss organizing recipes into chapters and making a table of contents.
Workshop 2: Embellishing recipes and turning them into a book
You'll learn the importance of adding an introduction, headnotes, and sidebars to give readers information about the origins, tastes, textures, unique ingredients and the special personalities that figure into the recipes. How do you credit the contributors and do you need an appendix or glossary? You will practice writing headnotes and sidebars that relate to a recipe.
Workshop 3: Historical Feasts from Memory’s Kitchens
For amateur culinary sleuths, this stand-alone workshop illustrates how researching social history enables present-day writers and cooks to recreate feasts in the style of a certain time and location. Imagine feasting à la Cinco de Mayo Puebla-style in 1862, serving a Victorian dinner reminiscent of late 19th century London, or dining with Thomas Jefferson at Monticello.
Joanna Pruess is an award-winning author of ten cookbooks, including Harney & Sons’ The Tea Cookbook, her Cast-Iron Cookbook: Simple and Delicious Comfort Food and Seduced by Bacon: Recipes and Lore about America’s Favorite Indulgence. She is a contributor to PBS’ NextAvenue.org (a new online magazine for “boomers” and has written extensively on food for publications including The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Washington Post, Food Arts, Saveur, Fine Cooking, Food & Wine and the Associated Press syndicate. Pruess has spoken about food and cultural anthropology at The Smithsonian Museum in Washington, DC, on board the Crystal Serenity, and at many venues in Turkey and America.
For 23 years, Ms. Pruess has been regular contributor to NASFT’s Specialty Foods Magazine and taught seminars about standardizing recipes. She has developed recipes for clients including Bella Cucina Artful Food, Bigelow Tea, Stonewall Kitchen, Sarabeth’s Kitchen, More Than Gourmet, Dufour Pastry Kitchens, and Vanns Spices. The creator and first director of the Cookingstudio, a cooking school within Kings Super Market, in New Jersey, she had more than 15,000 students in five years. Among the many classes she personally taught were those created for students with visual or hearing impairments, and those with learning disabilities. She appeared regularly of WYNY’s “Good Day, New York” and was honored by NYU’s School of Food Service as Woman of the Year in Food Service, Merchandising and Promotion. She is married to restaurant critic Bob Lape and they reside in New York City.
Joanna offers three hands-on culinary experiences, 3.5 hours each, on Tuesday at 11 am and 4 pm and Thursday at 4 pm, during which you will enjoy preparing your own meal along with fellow cooks. Classes take place at La Cocina Que Canta, our new culinary center.
For more information and registration, please click here.