Radio: Cooking for assimilation

Thesis Eleven editor Sian Supski features in this fascinating episode of The History Listen on ABC RN that explores Evi Balint’s story of migration through the lens of recipe books, cooking and the kitchen radio.

“Evi Balint was Hungarian and Jewish. She and her husband fled Europe with their baby son Michael in late 1938 as Hitler’s army marched into Vienna.

After her death in Sydney at age 83, her granddaughter Ruth found her treasured recipe book.

Evi’s cookbook opened up more than just a list of family favourites, Evi had kept in it some of her most precious memories.

The family’s arrival in Australia marked a time when migrants were regarded with suspicion.

Cooking for Assimilation weaves family interviews, recipes and the music of Evi’s 1950’s kitchen radio with archival material drawn from Australia’s film heritage. It’s an intimate portrait of one woman’s migration story against the backdrop of Australia’s rocky transition to becoming a multicultural nation.”


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