#14 Dishing About World History: Food and Feasts

November 16, 2022, at 8:00pm EST


Just in time for the holidays, the “Under the Baobab” series will resume with session XIV, “Dishing About World History: Food and Feasts,” on November 16 at 8:00pm Eastern/5pm Pacific for a night of lively discussion that is sure to whet attendees’ intellectual and culinary appetites. WHA president Jonathan Reynolds will moderate the proceedings, as panelists weave together the themes of food and history to explore unique holiday cuisines and their historical and cultural significance. This session will also serve as a prequel to the Spring 2023 World History Bulletin’s central theme, food in World History, with Dr. Jeffrey Pilcher as the Guest Editor.


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This session’s panel will feature Dr. Cynthia Ross (Texas A&M University-Commerce), Dr. Rick Warner (Wabash College), and Dr. Jeffrey Pilcher (University of Toronto), and will include live cooking demonstrations of their particular fare. In “Turkeys Away: Getting Christmas Dinner to the Front,” Dr. Ross will discuss Christmas dinner’s vital importance to American troops under fire in France during World War I, as well as the incredible logistical and innovative feats needed to deliver it to the frontlines. Additionally, she will prepare “mock turtle soup,” a forgotten delicacy that once graced the U.S. Army’s 1917 Christmas menu.

Dr. Warner will examine the fusion of vaquero (cowboy) life and early 20th century Italian immigration in Argentinian cultural history by focusing on various strategies for barbequing asada, paying special attention to the production of chimichurri sauce and its use in marination techniques. He will also make alfajore, a favorite holiday cookie in Argentina, while Dr. Pilcher prepares panochita de leche, a slow-cooked fudge once popular in Mexico at the dawn of the 19th century that has since disappeared.


Cynthia Ross 2m 3 1024x1024  Cynthia Ross, PhD

Image 3 217x300 Rick Warner, PhD

Pilcher 2015 1 200x300 Jeffrey Pilcher, PhD