Rebekah E. Pite: A Televised Cooking Segment as Historical Source: Dona Petrona’s Pan Dulce de Navidad

No one was more successful in encouraging women’s domestic dedication and home cooking than Doña Petrona C. de Gandulfo, Argentina’s leading culinary celebrity during most of the twentieth century. And, indeed, Pan Dulce de Navidad was her most famous recipe. As the holiday season drew close, she would show her fans how to make this sweet bread step by step on television, as we can see in these two videos from the mid 1960s (watch Part 1 and Part 2 on YouTube). Such footage may not at first glance appear to be a valuable historical source, but it provides us rare insight into how changing gender expectations, economic dynamics, and food-related practices were shaping Argentines’ daily lives. Continue Reading Rebekah E. Pite: A Televised Cooking Segment as Historical Source: Dona Petrona’s Pan Dulce de Navidad

Excerpt: Creating a Common Table in Twentieth-Century Argentina, by Rebekah E. Pite

Therefore, even as Petrona included some explicitly nationalistic recipes, such as a cake with an Argentine national flag, along with some typical criollo cuisine, like empanadas, she presented French, Spanish, and Italian dishes as equally important for Argentine amas de casa to master. Continue Reading Excerpt: Creating a Common Table in Twentieth-Century Argentina, by Rebekah E. Pite