Vintage Kitchenalia

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More About This Title Vintage Kitchenalia


As one world vanishes, another takes its place. The objects we collect are a record of the past, and of these objects, the least recorded are often the ones we all take for granted. Antique and vintage kitchenalia can tell us so many stories about Britain’s culinary, scientific and innovative past. Yet in a society seemingly so obsessed with food – the preparing, eating, sharing and sheer enjoyment of what and how we all eat – the humble kitchen utensil and its evolution is an often overlooked aspect of Britain’s heritage. Cooking evolved from a fire in the middle of the homestead, with a crude container to boil up every meal, to the vast shiny, glossy, gadget and accessory-driven kitchen, where most people now have to conjure up complex and clever dishes created by grilling, frying, poaching, roasting, baking, toasting, boiling, braising, slow-cooking, steaming and many other techniques to test and challenge the skills of even the most talented cooks. By investigating the objects themselves, Emma Kay discovers the rich history of how Britain’s kitchens became so versatile and, as the gadgets increased in availability, how cooking became so much more accessible, labour-saving and addictive.


Emma Kay is a historian and writer. She has worked as a museum professional for over fifteen years in major institutions such as the National Maritime Museum, the British Museum and the University of Bath. She has a degree in History, postgraduate certificate in Roman Archaeology, MA in Heritage Interpretation and a diploma in Cultural Heritage Management. She is a private collector of antique and vintage kitchenalia and writes and speaks about the history of cooking and dining to a variety of audiences. Emma founded the Museum of Kitchenalia in 2012. She lives in the Cotswolds with her husband and young son.