Series: Foods and Nations
Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Reaktion Books (May 15, 2014)
Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #1,274,785 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #94 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Regional & International > European > German #1080 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Celebrities & TV Shows #1643 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Cooking Education & Reference > History
Reviewed by Sharon Hudgins, culinary historian, Food Columnist for GERMAN LIFE magazines (USA)Ursula Heinzelmann's new book is an important contribution to the literature on the history of German food. In 345 pages of well-written text, she sets out to answer the question, "What is German about the way Germans eat, what they eat, and why," by looking at the evolution of German food from ancient times to the present. Throughout this work of social history, she emphasizes that German foods and foodways have been strongly influenced by geography, climate, and culture, as well as Germans' openness to changes, innovations, and foreign inputs, all of which have shaped their cuisine over the centuries. The book is organized chronologically into twelve chapters, from the Neolithic era to the contemporary period after German reunification in 1990. Each chapter contains a wealth of information not only about specific foods (acquired from hunting, gathering, agriculture, animal husbandry, conquest, and trade), but also about cooking utensils and methods, and the social, political, economic, religious, and technological factors that influenced the ways Germans have eaten during different periods in their history. Some topics run throughout many chapters, such as the social role of women in food preparation; the effects of poverty and affluence, of war and hunger; and Germans' attitudes toward specific foods at particular points in time. The author also includes interesting descriptions of German cookbooks from the Middle Ages to the modern era. My only critique is that sometimes, especially in the early chapters, she assumes the reader has more knowledge of German history and economics than many non-German readers probably do.
Having read another book on this series, I decided to read this one, and I'm glad I did. I have long had an interest in German history of any kind (possibly because most of my ancestry is German, off the boats long enough ago so that no identifiable German traditions remained in my family. This book is close to a must for anyone with such an interest. While centered on food, the background offers some historical context that is clear, objective and as good as or better than I have read in more formal historical analysis--particularly good on the later 1800s, the Nazi era and since, including cultural differences between the two Germanys before reunification. There is a great deal of information presented, so the reviewer who said note cards may be needed does have a point.The core idea is easily enough stated: there is no German equivalent of French cuisine, no dominant form or dish identifiable as German. In a sense Germany is a collection of regions and there is a great deal of current interest in regional German foods, dishes and cooking. Germany is open to influences from the outside (with a historic influence of French cuisine and more recent influence from the large number of migrant laborers coming after the war, Turkish, Greek, Italian and Balkan).There are some "boxes", asides on several restaurants and food venues, and some interesting photos, although the book could use more of them. There are some maps, but in a form I did not find particularly useful. The chapters are chronological, although the neat chronology of chapter titles is perhaps necessarily less precise in the material.
Beyond Bratwurst: A History of Food in Germany (Foods and Nations) Whole Food: The 30 Day Whole Food Challenge - Whole Foods Diet - Whole Foods Cookbook - Whole Foods Recipes (Whole Foods - Clean Eating) Whole Food: The 30 Day Whole Food Challenge - Whole Foods Diet - Whole Foods Cookbook - Whole Foods Recipes Genetically Modified Foods : Banned By Other Countries but is a main staple of our diet! (Genetically modified organisms, Gmo, Food that ruin your life, ... Foods, organic food, Food addiction Book 1) Whole: The 30 Day Whole Foods Challenge: Complete Cookbook of 90-AWARD WINNING Recipes Guaranteed to Lose Weight (Whole, Whole Foods, Whole Food Diet, Whole Foods Cookbook) Rice and Baguette: A History of Food in Vietnam (Foods and Nations) 100 Exotic Food Recipes (Puerto Rican Food Recipes,Picnic Food RecipesCaribbean Food Recipes,Food Processor Recipes,) The GMO Takeover: How to Avoid Monsanto and These Harmful Foods (GMO, Genetically Modified Foods) (Avoiding Toxic GMO Foods and Monsanto to Stay Healthy Book 1) GMO Free Diet: The Ultimate Guide on Avoiding GMO Foods and keeping Your Family Healthy with a GMO Free Diet (GMO, Non GMO Diet, Non GMO Foods, Genetically Engineered Foods, Monsanto) Foods High in Fiber Cookbook: List of High Fiber Foods for a Healthy Lifestyle - Recipes for High Fiber Foods When Money Destroys Nations: How Hyperinflation Ruined Zimbabwe, How Ordinary People Survived, and Warnings for Nations that Print Money Hawaii Food Guide: Unique Foods From Hawaii You've got to try (Locals and Vacation Tourists, Paradise, Asian Food, Polynesian Food, Hawaii Diet) The Adobo Road Cookbook: A Filipino Food Journey-From Food Blog, to Food Truck, and Beyond [Filipino Cookbook, 99 Recipes] The Adobo Road Cookbook: A Filipino Food Journeyfrom Food Blog, to Food Truck, and Beyond Nourished Beginnings Baby Food: Nutrient-Dense Recipes for Infants, Toddlers and Beyond Inspired by Ancient Wisdom and Traditional Foods ORGANIC COOKBOOK: Healthy And Delicious Baby Food Recipes Which Are Nutritious And Easy To Cook (organic food, food recipes, nutritious food) Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations: Traditional and Contemporary Native American Recipes Homemade Baby Food: 17 Wholesome Baby Food Recipes for Easy, Nutritious, and Delicious Homemade Baby Food (How to Make Baby Food) Native American Cooking: Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations Raw Food Diet: 50+ Raw Food Recipes Inside This Raw Food Cookbook. Raw Food Diet For Beginners In This Step By Step Guide To Successfully Transitioning ... Vegan Cookbook, Vegan Diet, Vegan Recipes)