Buy the book

$49.99
Handwritten recipes passed through the generations, tales of goats running wild in colonial gardens and early settlers’ experimentation with native foods ... Eat Your History dishes up stories and recipes from Australian kitchens and dining tables from 1788 to the 1950s.

Sydney Living Museums and our resident gastronomer, Jacqui Newling, have published Eat your history: stories and recipes from Australian kitchens, a beautifully curated book to read and cook from.

Visually rich, and featuring over forty recipes and myriad stories, the book shares forgotten tastes, lost techniques, and delicious culinary treasures discovered through historic kitchens, collection items, cookbooks, menus and manuscripts, and the histories of Sydney Living Museums’ cherished houses and heritage places.  

“There is a popular belief that Australia lacks a food culture or an identifiable national cuisine. Yet our history is replete with food stories, and our food and the way we eat are products of our past. What we eat and the tastes we accept are dictated by environmental and cultural – and therefore historical, political, economic and social – factors; it has been this way throughout history,” says Jacqui in her introduction to Eat Your history.

My role as curator and resident gastronomer at Sydney Living Museums has allowed me to explore our food heritage and to share some of the stories and recipes of those who helped to create our history. Gone are the days when history was dictated and dominated by wealthy white men. Influential characters such as John Macarthur and William Charles Wentworth have their places in this book, but so do their wives, their servants and their homes.

“ Jacqui picks through the chipped and broken crockery and fine silverware found in the kitchens and dining rooms of the houses that are cared for by Sydney Living Museums to tell the story of how we, as a nation, have eaten” says Barbara Sweeney, Sydneysider and food writer.

“[Jacqui] has brought a slice of history alive and her book promises many happy and engaged hours of reading. That you can read it as well as bake from it is a happy prospect .”

Eat your history is available online and in our museum shops for $49.99 (RRP)

[Jacqui] has brought a slice of history alive and her book promises many happy and engaged hours of reading. That you can read it as well as bake from it is a happy prospect.

Barbara Sweeney, Sydneysider and food writer

A fine piece of work – and intellectually nourishing

Radio National’s Phillip Adams on Late Night Live

Photo of cakes on wire cooling stand with lemons and lemon squeezer.

Online shop

Regency cheesecakesThursday 28 April 2016

colour photograph of roughly furnished kitchen with green painted furniture, packing case cupboards besides a large fireplace with black stove inset and mantle shelf with fabric valance and containers. There's a gas bracket on the wall with a glass lamp.

Online shop

Mrs Sarantides’s shortbread biscuitsThursday 21 April 2016

The classic 'Meroogal sponge' cake

Online shop

Meroogal spongeThursday 14 April 2016

About the Author

Sydney Living Museums Image
Jacqui Newling
Assistant curator
Creative Services
Jacqui brings over ten years of ‘visitor first’ interpretation experience to her role as a curator at SLM. She specialises in place-based social history and heritage, bringing meaningful stories from our past to contemporary audiences through various forms of media, from exhibitions to interactive opportunities for visitors in our museums. 

Employment opportunity preview tile.

Employment

20/CC013 ICT Support OfficerTuesday 1 December 2020

Artworks on sideboard

Media release

Meroogal Women’s Art Prize 2020 Winners’ AnnouncementWednesday 23 September 2020

The Meroogal Women’s Art Prize celebrates the creativity of female artists in NSW. The 2020 Winners were announced at a modest event at the Meroogal house museum.

Group of people in front of historic house.

Rouse Hill Estate

Play along with us: House Music at Your HouseMonday 17 August 2020

We invite you to join us in a new musical experiment, bringing the music of the 19th century into the 21st century. We’ve delved into the hundreds of popular songs that survive in the collection at Rouse Hill Estate and we’ve also asked some brilliant musicians to help you explore these pieces of music from their homes and in our historic houses.

Two children dressed as convicts in hammock room.

Donations

Support the Hyde Park Barracks learning precinctThursday 26 November 2020

With your help, Sydney Living Museums has an incredible opportunity to develop a dynamic learning precinct at the Hyde Park Barracks.