Thanks to the Australian Ethical Food Group (AEFG) it will soon be easier to find and share recipes for cooking clean home-grown organic food, Australian specialties and to delve into the history of Australian cooking.

The AEFG has pledged a generous multi-year gift to digitise the Library’s collection of Australian Cookery Books from the 1860s to 1960s. As well as fascinating recipes, the books are filled with hints, advertisements, margin-notes and messages that connect us with the communities of the time – from the comfort of our own kitchens.

The first known Australian cookery book was published in the 1860s. Entitled Ice and its uses, it contained 58 different recipes and applications for ice. While hundreds of cookery books are now published every year, Australia has a short history of culinary publications with only 27 known Australian cookery books available prior to 1891.

Whet your appetite with these cookbooks already digitised and available to read online via Trove.

Thank you

Thank you to the Australian Ethical Food Group for making it possible for us to bring these books online, beginning to appear on Trove in 2022. 

Learn more about the Australian Ethical Food Group online.

Green Australian Ethical Food Group logo on a white background

The AEFG stand for resilient and sustainable food products that enhance the vitality of ecosystems and communities, and the group is fascinated by the history of cookery books in Australia and the communities they sustained.