Overview of Celestine Eustis's Creole in Old Cooking Days
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“The strength of a nation is in the hands of the cook. Feed a man well, he will work well, he will fight well” (Eustis). These words are not what would typically be expected from a cookbook yet, nonetheless this is how author Celestine Eustis chooses to start her collection of recipes. In 1836, Celestine Eustis was born in Paris, to her mother who was from a prominent French-speaking Creole family. In 1904, when Eustis was in her late sixties, she wrote Creole in Old Cooking Days (On History and Food). Cooking in Old Creole Days shows the diversity of Creole culture with its variety of recipes and songs as well as other things that are included in this guide to Creole cooking even more so in the author’s introduction, as she utilizes some unconventional methods. This cookbook highlights the diversity and vibrancy of the Creole culture and how it played an important role in the exotic regional culture of Louisiana and in the old south. It served as a reflection of her Creole heritage, New Orleans background, French living, and privileged lifestyle. The recipe book celebrates the cooking traditions and meals created in the kitchens of the wealthy Southern society (On History and Food).
Within the introduction to the book, the surrender of Appomattox was referenced as the cause for two major calamities, the end of dueling and the disappearance of the colored cook. The latter of which, Celestine Eustis had first-hand knowledge of.
Defining one large combination of cultures that are blended together was done with a single word, Creole. A word packed with such diverse background and meaning that it serves as a perfect reference to define such a diverse culture. What is Creole? Creole, coming from both the Spanish word criollo and the F...
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...ion of recipes celebrates the culinary traditions of wealthy Southern Society (Feeding America). Creole culture is its own unique blend and Celestine Eustis helped to show the world what the entire Creole culture had to offer.
"Creole." Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 11 Dec. 2013. .
Eustis, Celestine. Cooking in Old Creole Days = La Cuisine Créole À L'usage Des Petits Menages. New York: n.p., 1928. Print.
"Feeding America." Feeding America. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2013.
"Historical Events for Year 1903." Today in History, Birthdays & History Articles. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2013.
"Historical Events for Year 1904." Today in History, Birthdays & History Articles. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2013.
"On Food and History." 'On Food and History' N.p., 13 May 2008. Web. 25 Oct. 2013.