Fifty years after Austin was founded, a group of women at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church gathered recipes from the women in the community and published the city’s first cookbook.
The Austin History Center has one of three known copies of “Our Home Cookbook,” published in 1891. Editors Medora Thornton and Lucy Lanier Davis gathered more than 300 recipes from 87 women in the capital city. In 2015, the Austin History Center republished a facsimile copy called Austin’s First Cookbook, with accompanying historical essays about the original book, the women who owned it and the women who contributed the recipes. We asked Mike Miller, who led the research effort behind the book, to help us dissect one of the recipes for Charlotte Russe to learn more about how food moved in Texas in the 1890s.