Some years ago, I wrote a somewhat hefty and academic speculation on how to use cookbooks in historical archaeology.* My case study then revolved around New Mexico and the vintage Spanish cookbooks that might possibly assist archaeologists in deciphering the bits and pieces they pulled out of the rocky, dusty ground there.
I am expanding that article into a small booklet in order to provide some guidance in food writing, particularly culinary history.
What’s That Weird Spoon For? (note, it’s just a working title) will cover techniques, provide example – good and bad – of the genre, and research sources and tips.
*“Daily Life Through Cooking and Cookbooks: A Brief Guide to Using Cookbooks as Tools in Historical Archaeology,” Artifact, November 2012.