Here at Sydney Living Museums we love our food!

Sydney Living Museums' Food is a flavourful feast of stories about food and cooking. We invite you to step inside our kitchens, peek into our pantries, sit at our tables, leaf through our cookbooks, cook from our recipes and forage in our gardens to discover some fascinating food facts, revive some lost arts with ‘how to’ videos and taste forgotten flavours with recipes you can make at home. 

Eat with us! Come along to our seasonal artisan and harvest markets and Colonial Gastronomy programs or dine in our cafes, restaurants or tearooms in our heritage properties. Try some of our heirloom recipes from The Cook and the Curator blog and relish our new book, Eat your history, stories and recipes from Australian tables.  



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The Cook and the Curator

Man holding basket with woman in front of sandstone structure.

The Cook and the Curator, brought to you by Sydney Living Museums (SLM), invites you to explore our food heritage. Each month we visit one of our extraordinary properties, introduce you to its past residents and look at what, where and how they ate. Comb through old cookery books, decipher handwritten recipes, experiment with heirloom produce, rediscover lost culinary arts, and enjoy family stories. We also show you how to blend exotic spices, whip up apple snow, make gelatine from calves’ feet (if you dare!) and lay the perfect Regency table – and this is just a portion of what’s on our menu.

Go to the blog.

Scott Hill and Jacqui Newling at the well, Vaucluse House. Photo © James Horan for Sydney Living Museums



Bunya pines in front of Elizabeth Farm

The Cook and the Curator

Boom crash bunyaThursday 25 January 2018

A man in a chef's hat and whites with a medallion around his neck

The Cook and the Curator

Of Bocuse and butterThursday 25 January 2018

Large black plumaged bird with naked red head on grass.

The Cook and the Curator

Let’s talk turkey – brush styleThursday 18 January 2018

Sliced oranges filled with multicoloured layers of jelly.

The Cook and the Curator

Festive treats from The Cook and the Curator archiveThursday 21 December 2017

Closeup of fruit cake.

The Cook and the Curator

Let them eat Christmas cake!Thursday 14 December 2017

Colonial Gastronomy

Woman in kitchen with produce and cooking implements.

Colonial Gastronomy is a series of food-based programs presented by our resident gastronomer Jacqui Newling held every few months at our historic house museums. Inspired by letters, manuscript recipes, cookbooks and menus from our collections, the properties themselves or their locale, these fascinating programs are designed to revive lost arts or rediscover forgotten flavours, ingredients and culinary concepts by exploring our places. They range from ‘talk, tour and taste’ experiences or hands-on workshops to masterclasses with artisan producers and more elaborate catered dining events. They have included butchery and cheese-making classes, pickling, preserving and cordial making, Christmas plum pudding workshops and recreating colonial breakfasts and dinner menus.    

Jacqui Newling, colonial gastronomer and author. Photo © James Horan for Sydney Living Museums

Featured Videos


Related news

Sliced oranges filled with multicoloured layers of jelly.

The Cook and the Curator

Festive treats from The Cook and the Curator archiveThursday 21 December 2017

Box of eggs with handwritten label.

The Cook and the Curator

Country hospitalityThursday 5 October 2017

Woman in stall decorated with colourful bunting.

SLM Food

Sumptuous seasonal delightsTuesday 29 August 2017

The arrival of spring heralds the return of two popular food-related festivals, as well as two exclusive events in our Colonial Gastronomy series.

Plate of flower shaped biscuits on patterned tablecloth.

Online shop

Aunty Tot's lemon biscuitsMonday 19 December 2016

Related stories

Girl and boy chopping vegetables in the kitchen, Vaucluse House. Photograph © James Horan for Sydney Living Museums

Foraged from the history books of our houses these recipes are sure to delight the young mind.