Sauerkraut Yankees Cookbook - Pennsylvania German Foods

Sauerkraut Yankees Cookbook - Pennsylvania German Foods is a unique cookbook that is focused on the cuisine of the Pennsylvania Germans. There are over 139 recipes included inside like Apple Puffs, Jumbles, Sweet Potato Waffles, Dried Cherry Pie, Sauerkraut, and more. 


Format: Hardcover with dust jacket and plastic protective sleeve, 218 pages 

Copyright: 1983 

Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press 

Author: William Woys Weaver 

ISBN: 9780812278682

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Description: Dubbed the "Sauerkraut Yankees" during the Civil War, the Pennsylvania Germans held tenaciously to their Old World customs, especially traditions concerning the preparation of food. The sweet-and-sour pickle, Riuwels (crumb dumplings), as well as Schtinkkees ("stink" cheese), sweet potato waffles, and raspberry vinegar are spicy elements of that tradition. 

In addition to a luscious assortment of recipes available in translation for the first time, Sauerkraut Yankees paints an invaluable portrait of the Pennsylvania Germans as a people. The book is essentially a new one written around an old one: The text is threaded around a translation and analysis of Die geschickte Hausfrau (The Handy Housewife). This extremely rare cookbook was originally compiled for the Pennsylvania Dutch by Gustav Sigismund Peters (1793-1847), a Harrisburg printer whose eccentricities are as interesting as his culinary thievery, both of which are entertainingly described. 

William Weaver focuses on the period of 1830—70, when traditional Pennsylvania-German cookery began to break down under mounting pressures of assimilation, technological changes (such as the introduction of cooking stoves), industrialization, and the massive changes in life-style brought about by the Civil War. The author discusses the significance of certain dishes -- for example, serving calfs head was a status symbol. He describes many colorful food customs and beliefs that are now largely extinct in Pennsylvania -- such as the Metzelsupp, a meat gift associated with fall butchering, and Belschnickeling, a form of mumming once a very traditional part of the Pennsylvania-German Christmas. 

In addition to the 139 delicious recipes included in Sauerkraut Yankees -- everything from roast suckling pig to cherry bounce and mulled wine -- the book is garnished with charming line illustrations chosen from rare nineteenth-century sources. A fascinating addition to any gourmand's or food historian's bookshelf, Sauerkraut Yankees is a rare sumptuous find for the mind as well as the palate. 


Condition: Good condition. Newspaper clipping about the author taped inside cover. 

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