Karen Wilson, Oriental Institute Research Associate
Oriental Institute Museum
1155 E 58th St
Cost: $7 per person
The ancient land of Mesopotamia — today’s Iraq — really did have a haute cuisine, with remarkable recipes for amazing dishes all recorded in cuneiform script on ancient clay tablets. The Oriental Institute Museum features some of the tablets, as well as many other artifacts related to cuisine and cookery in ancient Iraq.
The Oriental Institute’s exhibit on ancient Mesopotamia contains a world-renowned collection of art and artifacts that range from prehistoric times (even some food preparation implements from then!) all the way up to a time when the kings of ancient Babylon ruled the known world (as is mentioned in the Bible).
Karen Wilson, the Museum’s former director and currently an Oriental Institute Research Associate, has a special interest in Mesopotamian cuisine and cookery. She was curator of the Museum’s Mesopotamian collection and is author of an upcoming book highlighting the importance of that collection.