Culinary Research Collection

Culinary Research Collection contains historically significant cookery books from around the world, including early Australian rare cookery books. The collection provides rich and extensive culinary resources for research in Australian culinary history, other culinary cultures, extensive recipes for all cuisines worldwide, and recipes for special occasions.

Click here to explore rare English cookbooks

The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy
By a Lady
London: Printed for the author, sold by A. Millar, & T. Trye, 1758

This cookbook was one of perhaps the most influential of all English 18th century cookbooks. It is still in print today and used as a reference for food research and historical reconstruction. This 1758 edition gave the first mention of “Hamburgh sausages” and piccalilli (Paco-Lilla).

The Lady's Assistant for Regulating and Supplying Her Table
By Mason Charlotte

London: Walter, 1801, 8th ed.

The Lady's Assistant" by Charlotte Mason is an important but much neglected eighteenth century cookery book. Unusually the table settings show layouts for more ordinary households as well as affluent ones, and the recipes follow this pattern. In an introduction the food historian Ivan Day discusses Charlotte Mason's innovative dishes in this most interesting work. In the first edition of 1773 the book's author was described as 'a professed housekeeper, who had upwards of thirty years’ experience of families of the first fashion'.


Click here to explore rare Australian cookbooks

The English and Australian Cookery Book
by Edward Abbott
London, 1864, 1st edition

First and only edition published in 1864, written by Edward Abbott (1801-1869). One of only eight known Australian archival copies. Published pseudonymously by “an Australian Aristologist”, the book is a gastronomic miscellany of ‘the modern cookery of the mother country and the colonies’, and of Continental and Hebrew cookery.
Recipes include ‘Roast Beef of Old England’, ‘kangaroo steamer’ and ‘slippery bob’  a dish of battered kangaroo brains fried in emu fat.




The Antipodean Cookery Book
By Mrs. Lance Rawson

Melbourne, 1897, 2nd edition.

First edition published in 1895, this old cookery book has been reprinted in recent years, the latest facsimile edition was published in 1992. The author, Lance Rawson, told young housewives that cooking is an essential skill for a happy marriage, and encouraged them to learn about edible bush food from Aboriginal people in the bush area. In her book, it shows us the cooking fashion in Australian pioneers’ family in nineteenth century.





Click here to explore Personal Recipe Cards

Personal Recipe Cards and Notebooks donated by the Public




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