When visitors travel to Pennsylvania Dutch Country, they are encouraged to consume the local culture by way of "regional specialties" such as cream-filled whoopie pies and deep-fried fritters of every variety. Yet many of the dishes and confections visitors have come to expect from the region did not emerge from Pennsylvania Dutch culture but from expectations fabricated bWhen visitors travel to Pennsylvania Dutch Country, they are encouraged to consume the local culture by way of "regional specialties" such as cream-filled whoopie pies and deep-fried fritters of every variety. Yet many of the dishes and confections visitors have come to expect from the region did not emerge from Pennsylvania Dutch culture but from expectations fabricated by local-color novels or the tourist industry. At the same time, other less celebrated (and rather more delicious) dishes, such as sauerkraut and stuffed pork stomach, have been enjoyed in Pennsylvania Dutch homes across various localities and economic strata for decades.Celebrated food historian and cookbook writer William Woys Weaver delves deeply into the history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine to sort fact from fiction in the foodlore of this culture. Through interviews with contemporary Pennsylvania Dutch cooks and extensive research into cookbooks and archives, As American as Shoofly Pie offers a comprehensive and counterintuitive cultural history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine, its roots and regional characteristics, its communities and class divisions, and, above all, its evolution into a uniquely American style of cookery. Weaver traces the origins of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine as far back as the first German settlements in America and follows them forward as New Dutch Cuisine continues to evolve and respond to contemporary food concerns. His detailed and affectionate chapters present a rich and diverse portrait of a living culinary practice--widely varied among different religious sects and localized communities, rich and poor, rural and urban--that complicates common notions of authenticity.Because there's no better way to understand food culture than to practice it, As American as Shoofly Pie's cultural history is accompanied by dozens of recipes, drawn from exacting research, kitchen-tested, and adapted to modern cooking conventions. From soup to Schnitz, these dishes lay the table with a multitude of regional tastes and stories.Hockt eich hie mit uns, un esst eich satt--Sit down with us and eat yourselves full!...
|Title||:||As American as Shoofly Pie: The Foodlore and Fakelore of Pennsylvania Dutch Cuisine|
|Number of Pages||:||328 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
As American as Shoofly Pie: The Foodlore and Fakelore of Pennsylvania Dutch Cuisine Reviews
When I hear the phrase "Pennsylvania Dutch", I think of the Amish. I think most people do. So when I received a review copy of William Woys Weaver's latest book on the culinary history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine, As American as Shoofly Pie, I have to admit I wasn't too excited. What's there to learn about pickled beans and shoofly pie really?Well, as it turns out, the Amish are only a subgroup of the Pennsylvania Dutch (PD). Weaver explains that the PD include all German speaking (Dutch in the context of PD is a bastardization of Deutsch, the name for German language) peoples that immigrated to Pennsylvania during the 17th and 18th centuries. From Wikipedia: "The majority of these immigrants originated in what is today southwestern Germany, i.e., Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Württemberg; other prominent groups were Alsatians, Swiss, and Huguenots (French Protestants)". Weaver goes on to explain that about a third were the Palatinates, a third were Swiss (and this includes the Amish), and a third were the immigrants from Wuttemberg (known as Swabians - and these folks gave us the pretzel).Weaver spends a lot of his pages describing in detail the cultural and culinary differences between these three major groups of PD and it's quite interesting. Among other things, we learn about the lost or forgotten PD recipes (like hairy dumplings), we learn how PD sauerkraut is made differently than the German variety, and we learn how the Amish culinary table (or what we think of as their culinary table) came to dominant the entire image of PD cuisine. And it's on this last point that Weaver seems quite bitter. To sum up his resentment in two clauses: it's unconscionable that everyone thinks PD=Amish and it's unconscionable that their food (as marketed and sold in restaurants and farmstands) is seen as THE authentic PD when much of their cuisine is derivative and can't be traced back to the old world. For example, their chicken pot pie is just a riff on the traditional English recipe. And shoofly pie is just a variant of maple syrup pie made by the Canadians and New Englanders. But the Amish get all the press bc of their non-standard attire and their plain sect culture. Oh and he also has a beef with calling the PD German bc only 2/3rd of them immigrated from what is now Germany (don't forget about those Swiss and French!) and even those who did can't really be considered German since Germany was not a country at the time they came over.The last section of the book is filled with PD recipes, both those that came over from the old world and the new that were created in Pennsylvania. As it turns out, I'm not much a fan of PD cuisine (its a bit too similar to German food which doesn't suit me) so I haven't attempted any of the recipes yet, but they're still delightful to read.
I have to admit, this book was not really what I expected. I thought it was going to be a cookbook covering Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine with history scattered throughout. It is more like a history book with lots of recipes in the back half of the book. Pretty much everything you ever wanted to know about the history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine is covered in this book. The origins are traced back as far as the first German settlements in America, and then followed forward as it evolves throughout American history. This book covers the roots, regional characteristics, communities and class divisions of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine. The recipes are in alphabetical order, which felt very odd to me. You go from Almond Fingers to Amish Roast to Apple Schnitz and Dumplings. There is an index that lists the recipes by category on pg 276. The recipe themselves are very interesting. Some of them made me want to get into the kitchen and start cooking them immediately, while others made me want to turn the page as quickly as possible--Stuffed Pig Stomach, anyone? If you're looking for an actual cookbook of Pennsylvania Dutch recipes, you might want to look elsewhere as this is a pretty thick book, but if you want the history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine, this is the book for you.I received a copy of this book from University of Pennsylvania Press for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
This book is about half history of Pennsylvania Dutch cuisine, half recipes.Prior to moving to central Pennsylvania 4 years ago, my knowledge of local food was a hazy awareness of shoofly pie and chicken potpie, and a touch of cynicism about the boasts of "Lancaster County!" on eggs sold in New York City. This was an interesting overview of what Dutch cuisine really is and how our image of Dutch culture and cuisine--and its popular attachment to the Amish--was manufactured, often by outsiders.