Fire and Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking

Darra Goldstein

Scandinavia is a land of extremes, where chic design meets rugged wilderness, where perpetual winter nights are succeeded by endless days of summer. The Scandinavians still live and cook according to seasonal rhythms, and many still practice hunting and foraging as natural activities in a region with some of the most pristine places on earth. Darra Goldstein will discuss her new cookbook, Fire & Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking, in the context of the far north, where the exigencies of geography and climate have taught people to live from the land rather than merely on it. Her talk will explore the Nordic region’s rich culinary and cultural traditions, highlighting the commonalities among Danes, Finns, Norwegians, and Swedes while showing the ways in which history’s arc and political alliances ultimately created distinctive cuisines. From the elemental preservation techniques of salting, smoking, and curing to the cutting-edge experiments of New Nordic kitchens, Scandinavian cooking is at once basic and highly innovative, earthy and elegant.

Darra Goldstein is the Willcox and Harriet Adsit Professor of Russian at Williams College and Founding Editor of Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture, named the 2012 Publication of the Year by the James Beard Foundation. She has published widely on literature, culture, art, and cuisine and has organized several exhibitions, including Feeding Desire: Design and the Tools of the Table, 1500-2005, at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. She is also the author of five cookbooks: A Taste of Russia, The Georgian Feast (the 1994 IACP Cookbook of the Year), The Winter Vegetarian, Baking Boot Camp at the CIA, and the newly released Fire and Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking. Goldstein has consulted for the Council of Europe on using food to promote tolerance and diversity, and under her editorship Culinary Cultures of Europe: Identity, Diversity and Dialogue was published in 2005. She is currently Food Editor of Russian Life magazine, Series Editor of California Studies in Food and Culture (University of California Press), and Editor in Chief of The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets.

This program is hosted by the Chicago Foodways Roundtable. To reserve, please e-mail:

Saturday, November 7, 2015 at 10:00 AM
Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark St., Chicago, Illinois (Directions, Parking)
Fee: $3.