Preserving Canada's flavourful history

Recent years have seen a renewed interest in food and culinary history, both as a private hobby and as a flourishing topic of social sciences and humanities research. Food history has also been a major focus of's acquisition and preservation efforts, resulting in a collection that reaches back through Canada’s published culinary history up to and including The Frugal Housewife’s Manual (Toronto, 1840), the first mass-printed cookbook with Canadian recipes, and La cuisinière canadienne (Montreal, 1840), the first French-language cookbook published in Canada.

The Early Canadiana Online food history collection, consisting of cookbooks and related material published up to 1950, is being expanded to serve this burgeoning scholarly and popular interest. The latest titles, taken from the dawn of 20th-century commercial culture, document a booming food and advertising industry, chronicling a time when big-name American brands began making their cultural presence felt in Canada.

Reliable online access to this collection will no doubt add useful insights to a wide range of fields; but, if all else fails, even the staunchest theorists may enjoy trying these old recipes and getting a taste of Canada in the early 1900s.


Select titles

• Levure "Royal" (Toronto: E.W. Gillett Co., 191-?)
• The Magic Cook Book and Housekeepers Guide  (Toronto, 191-?)
• Dainty & Delicious Dishes (Toronto: Cowan Company, 1918?)
• A Cook Book for the Economical Housewife (Montreal: Guaranteed Pure Milk Co., 192-?)
• Seasoning Suggestions (Montreal: Lea & Perrins, c. 1920)
• The New Purity Flour Cook Book (Toronto: Western Canada Flour Mills Co., 1923)
• My Hundred Favorite Recipes (Aylmer, Ont.: Carnation Milk Products Co., c.1926)
• Home Canning (Montreal: Dominion Glass Company, 1926)
• Just look! at these wonderful jams and jellies (Cobourg? Ont.: Douglas Packing Co.?, c. 1926)
• Livre culinaire magic et guide des ménagères (Toronto, 1926?)
• Magic Cook Book and Housekeepers Guide (Toronto : E.W. Gillett Co., 1927-9?)
• Clark's Recipe Book (Montre?al: W. Clark Ltd., 193-?)
• D'excellentes recettes (Lynn, Mass.; Cobourg, Ont.: Lydia E. Pinkham Medicine Co., 193-?)
• Friendly Foods from the Quaker Oats Company (Peterborough, Ont.: Quaker Oats Co., 193-?)
• Borden's Eagle Brand Book of Recipes (Montreal: Borden Milk Co., 193-?)
• Rhymes and Recipes (New Toronto, Ont.: Campbell Soup Company, 193-?)
• A.B.C. of mixing cocktails | Recettes de cocktails (Montreal: Hiram Walker & Sons, Gooderham & Worts, c. 1930)
• The Magic Cook Book (Toronto: Standard Brands, 1932?)
• 100 Glorified Recipes (Aylmer, Ont.: Carnation Co., c. 1932)
• The Magic Cook Book (Toronto: Standard Brands, 1933?)
• Le livre culinaire de la poudre à pâte Magic (Montre?al: Standard Brands Ltd., 194-?)