Thank you for seeking out The Vintage Generations Cookbook. This cookbook began as a scholarship project for students from Chatham University, just up the hill from Vintage. The project was funded by the Council for Independent Colleges and AARP as part of an initiative called “Intergenerational Connections.” The goal of the program is to help universities jump start activities that bring senior adults and college students into mutually beneficial relationships.
We began with two goals in mind. First, we wanted to help the community at Vintage to make a cookbook with favorite recipes that represents the vitality, creativity, and diversity of the people who spend their time there. We didn’t just want recipes. We wanted the book to have lots of stories in it to really show off the people we met. The students acted like journalists, interviewing the contributors about their recipes and getting to know them well enough to write the stories you’ll read around the recipes. We also made audio recordings of these stories with the help of our friends at Chatham’s Center for Regional Agriculture, Food, and Transformation (CRAFT). These recordings will be archived in our library and available for researchers who want to study food in Pittsburgh.
The second thing we wanted to accomplish was perhaps more important: we wanted to make friends! “Intergenerational Connections” is not about community service or some kind of one-way information dump on seniors. We truly wanted to learn from the people we met. We saw very quickly that Vintage already has a thriving and vibrant community; you didn’t need us to give you a reason to be there! We knew this on the first day when we had to wait for yoga class to finish before we could set up our first lunch. While the yogis were putting away their props, they sprang into action helping us to set up tables, find ice and cups, and generally showing us the ropes. Special thanks to Dorothy Bradshaw and Cathie Huber who hosted us with so much grace, and who whipped up so much excitement for the project in the Vintage hallways. We ate together, laughed together, and talked together. We attempted to do their recipes justice in a potluck lunch, and they continued to school us. They shared photographs, stories, and phone numbers. It has been our pleasure to text and talk with our contributors, even after the students went home for the summer.
And so we humbly present to you these recipes from our new friends. We thank our contributors for trusting us with their stories and recipes; we hope that we have done them justice here.
With sincerest thanks,
Carrie Helms Tippen
Assistant Professor of English