Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Faux Feast

We're stocking up on food here at the Tenement Museum, but it's not for a holiday party. It's faux food for our upcoming exhibit "Shop Life" which will explore the many businesses housed at 97 Orchard over the years, including a 19th Century German saloon run by John Schneider and his wife Caroline. While these replicas wouldn't taste very good, they sure look the part! Historic faux food expert Sandy Levins meticulously crafted each piece.

A pitcher of milk, Blutwurst Sausage, Sauerbraten in a pot, and Lebkuchen

Lebkuchen (in the rectangular pan) is a traditional treat from Nuremberg, Germany, where John Schneider was born. Similar to gingerbread, this cookie is flavored with spices like aniseed, coriander, cloves, ginger, cardamom and allspice, as well as nuts including almonds, hazelnuts, and walnuts, or candied fruit.

Cut Lebkuchen (in the octagonal bowl), Pig's Feet, Heaven and Earth, Almonds, and Sauerkraut

"Himmel und Erde" or "Heaven and Earth", in the top right pot above, is a traditional German mixture of mashed potatoes and apples.

Traditional German pretzels--these look delicious!

Pickles are still a favorite treat here in the Lower East Side
If you've been on our "Foods of the Lower East Side" tour, you've sampled traditional German pretzels and pickles just like these. Though they've been thoroughly Americanized, both of these foods originate in immigrant communities.

The "Slop Bucket"
The Slop Bucket was a particular challenge to create. Caroline Schneider wouldn't have wasted much in her kitchen--food was a precious commodity. Here we have what is essentially a 19th-Century compost bin, with grape stems, apple cores, eggshells and various peels, all re-created in precise detail.

"Shop Life" will open in 2012--we'll keep you posted as the exhibit develops!
For more information about Sandy Levin's work creating replica foods, visit http://historicfauxfoods.com/workshop.shtml.

1 comment:

  1. This is SO COOL! It will be hard to resist touching it all!


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