Books at the Exchange

Check out these new books at the Exchange Shop!


Lafcadio Hearn’s Creole Cook Book:

A delightful as well as insightful journey into the distinctive culinary tastes of the New Orleans Creole culture of the 1870s and 80s, Lafcadio Hearn’s Creole Cook Book is the first Creole cookbook ever written. It is a labor of love of an unusual literary figure who devoted much of his time to discovering the nuances and secrets of the Creole diet.

Spiced with drawing and writings from Hearn’s years in New Orleans and preserved in their original form, the recipes in this unique volume reflect the age in which they were created. Through his remarks on preparation, cooking, and storing, as well as hints on housecleaning, Hearn’s text offers a remarkable historic vision of life in the Creole household of yesteryear.


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Gumbo Ya-Ya:

The sights and sounds of Louisiana come alive in Gumbo Ya-Ya. Long considered the finest collection of Louisiana folk tales and customs, this new addition chronicles the stories and legends that have emerged from across thee Bayou State.

Gumbo Ya-Ya is a charming look at the legends and practices of Louisiana. Originally written as part of the WPA’s Louisiana’s Writers’ Program, it has endured as a classic of its genre.




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Creole Cookery:


First published in 1885 by the Christian Woman’s Exchange, Creole Cookery is an exhaustive collection of Creole recipes. Creole Cookery serves as both a historical reference to the foods ans habits of the 19th century as well as a useable recipe book for modern-day kitchens. Many of the recipes are used for cooking demonstrations in the open-hearth kitchen here at the Hermann-Grima House.


Recipes include okra soup, parsnip fritters, onion custard, boiled trout, stuffed eggplant, bewitched beef, and fried tomatoes. This book also includes over 150 cake recipes that will satisfy the Southern sweet tooth!


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Frenchman, Desire, Good Children:

Have you ever wondered where the fascinating and often difficult-to-pronounce street names of New Orleans come from? This classic, humorous, and educational reference on the nomenclature of the city’s roadways explains the history of such street names as Tchoupitoulas, Marigny, Poets, Decatur, and more. It reveals the intriguing tales of the developers, families, notorious and famous people, places, and events from which these names were created, sharing the street-level history of this one-of-a-kind American city.

A must read for everyone who has ever fallen in love with the magic of New Orleans!


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The World That Made New Orleans:

In this thoughtful, well-researched history, Ned Sublette (Cuba and Its Music) charts the development of New Orleans, from European colonization through the Haitian revolution (which was crucial to French and American negotiations over Louisiana) to the Louisiana Purchase.

Central to his account are the African slaves, who began arriving in New Orleans in 1719, and their contributions to the city’s musical life. He considers, for example, how musical influences from different parts of Africa—Kongo drumming and Senegambian banjo playing—combined to forge a distinctive musical culture. Sublette also lucidly discusses New Orleans’ important role in the domestic slave trade, arguing persuasively that the culture of slavery in New Orleans was different from that in Virginia or South Carolina. In New Orleans, there was a large population of free blacks, and slaves there had greater relative freedom than elsewhere. Furthermore, by the early 19th century, Louisiana was home to more African-born slaves than the Upper South. Those factors, which helped perpetuate African religion and dance, combined to offer an alternative path of development for African American culture.

As our nation continues to ponder the future of the Big Easy, Sublette offers an informative accounting of that great city’s past. A must read for anyone interested in the unique and often scary history of New Orleans.


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