History's Just Desserts

Exploring American History through Desserts and Their Makers


Pies Not Always a July 4th Staple

Chicago Sun-Times

July 2, 2014

“[Pies] were not treats,” says Amanda Moniz . . . “They were convenience foods and they were frugal food.”

This Associated Press story by Michele Kayal also appeared in other newspapers.

Eating Tongue Was Once a Patriotic Act

American Food Roots

May 22, 2014

“Julia Irwin from the University of South Florida, Helen Veit, who teaches at Michigan State University and Amanda Moniz, a pastry chef who is now assistant director of the National History Center, talked about the sacrifices Americans were asked to make to help address food shortages in Europe.”

Food Historian Savors Washington’s Culinary Heritage

Roll Call

April 9, 2014

“Amanda Moniz is thrilled whenever the opportunity arises to showcase her twin loves: baking and history. And she’s been delighted to discover, via the experimental courses she’s developed in conjunction with Hill Center, that others hunger to do so as well.”

Historical Cooking

Washingtonian This Week in Food Events

February 18, 2014

Historical cooking: Pastry chef turned historian Amanda Moniz leads a course at the Hill Center on Thursday from 10 to noon examining the first two African-American cookbook authors. Participants will make historical recipes and learn about the authors and the time in which they lived ($40 per person).”

H-SHEAR Weekend Reading

February 7, 2014

“The Historian at the Stove

  • Amanda Moniz, “A Meal to Honor Early African-American Cookbook Authors,” wsiu.org, February 5, 2014. Link: http://bit.ly/1f1NFQn

Celebrate a successful day in the archives with this short piece on early American cookbooks by a one-time pastry chef turned historian. In addition to offering a bit of background on each African-American chef, Moniz also adapts a few recipes for today’s cook. (After all, four gallons of cucumbers might be a bit much for even the biggest fan of Chow Chow.) Of particular note to historians of the early Republic era is mention of Robert Roberts’ The House Servant’s Directory, published in 1828 and viewable through the link.”

EAR Blogosphere, a Catalogue of Publics

February 5, 2014

History’s Just Desserts
Amanda Moniz’s blog explores American history through cooking and food, particularly desserts.”

Hill Center Historic Cooking and Baking Series

Hill Rag

January 15, 2014

“The Hill Center is offering a historic cooking and baking series where you can recover recipes and stories of the American past with historian and former pastry chef Amanda Moniz. Moniz, a professional historian and former pastry chef who combines her two loves in baking classes and on her culinary history blog, History’s Just Desserts (historysjustdesserts.com), will teach these fun hands-on classes. Moniz will use recipes adapted for the modern kitchen while exploring notable people and events from the colonial period to the late 1800s.”

Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Thanksgiving with Pie and Apple Cider

AHA Today

November, 27, 2013

“In advance of Thanksgiving, we would be remiss to acknowledge a very important anniversary. Tomorrow marks the 150th anniversary of the creation of a national Thanksgiving holiday, in 1863. I recently learned about this anniversary from Amanda Moniz, a historian in the DC area who, on top of blogging about the intersection of American history and food, frequently offers a history-infused baking class at the Hill Center. On Sunday I had the opportunity to attend her latest offering, “Civil War Thanksgiving,” that honored some of the traditional Thanksgiving recipes from the 19th century, taken directly from the recipe book of Sarah Josepha Hale, a pioneering writer and advocate during the Civil War era who famously campaigned for an official Thanksgiving holiday.”

Read more here.

Sarah Josepha Hale Knew How to Do Thanksgiving

American Food Roots

November 26, 2013

“Culinary historian Amanda Moniz tells cooking classes that Hale envisioned “a national Thanksgiving holiday with churches throughout the country marking the day with feasts and by raising funds to free American slaves. Under her plan, freed slaves would them be removed from the United States and sent to Africa.”

“Sarah J. Hale, who convinced Abraham Lincoln to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday, had this recipe in her cook book:

“Cider cake is very good, to be baked in small loaves. 1 1/2 lb. of flour, half a pound of sugar, quarter of a pound of butter, half a pint of cider, 1 tea-spoonful of pearl ash; spice to your taste. Bake till it turns easily in the pans. I should think about half an hour.”

Culinary historian Amanda Moniz has adapted Hale’s recipe for contemporary cooks.”

Apple Cider Shortcake Recipe

Cream Puffs Through the Ages

Rachel Hope Cleves

November 14, 2013

“How did American cooks adapt petits choux for the local palate? Amanda Moniz, historian, baker, and blogger at History’s Just Desserts, recommended that I take a look at the cream puff recipe in Jennie June’s American Cookery Book (1866) for an example.”

The Week in Early American History

The Junto

July 21, 2013

“. . .check out Amanda Moniz’s blog for a sweet taste of American history through desserts.”

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