Expression through Cooking
Individuals, families and communities have been able to express themselves during the pandemic through cooking. People explored new recipes during COVID-19 and created comfort with traditional family recipes. Isolated during stay-at-home orders, people also used cooking to bring together family and create a sense of community.
During the pandemic, staff from the Autry Museum explored and cooked their way through Comidas Mexicanas, a 1937 cookbook in the Autry’s special collections that contains Mexican American recipes contributed by women living in Pasadena’s Mexican communities.
Choose one, two, or all the following activities to complete:
- Analyze. Choose an image from the Autry Blog: How the Pandemic Redefined Family Dinners OR What’s Cooking in Quarantine? Complete the Autry Object Analysis Activity.
- Describe. Write a journal entry about: “How did cooking during the pandemic change?” Include answers to the following questions in your journal entry: Was there more home cooking than eating out and how did it change – new and different recipes, online cooking classes? Did cooking at restaurants change – not as many food items, never had take-out and now do, switched to family style take-out?
- Create. Make a food dish that you made during the pandemic and create a recipe card with a photo of the finished food. Include in the recipe card: 1) Name of food item/dish 2) Ingredients 3) Instructions. If you can, add the history of the dish. You can use a recipe from Comidas Mexicanas (recipes in Spanish and English).
If you would like to share your work, please submit it to the Autry's Collecting Community History Initiative: The West During COVID-19. https://autry.formstack.com/forms/collecting_community_history_initiative
We will be highlighting some of these different objects, images, and experiences on our blog, The Autry Files. In the case of photographs of physical objects, please note that—at some point in the future—we may get in touch with you to see if you would be interested in donating the objects to our collections!
Educational Programs at the Autry are sponsored by:
PHYLLIS H. BARBATO • MOLLY AND NEAL H. BROCKMEYER • FRANK H. COUNTNER AND SUSAN L. COUNTNER • DWIGHT STUART YOUTH FUND • EDISON INTERNATIONAL • DAVID F. EISENBERG • GEORGINA-FREDRICK CHILDREN’S FOUNDATION•THE KENNETH T. AND EILEEN L. NORRIS FOUNDATION • MAX H. GLUCK FOUNDATION • CHRISTY AND STEVE MCAVOY • ANN C. RONUS AND ROBERT E. RONUS • THE STEINMETZ FOUNDATION • VIRGINIA F. STEVENSON • UNION BANK • U.S. BANK