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Lehigh Valley Live: Long-running PBS show to visit Bethlehem landmark, dig into rich culinary tradition

June 15th, 2021 |

One of Pennsylvania’s most decorated chefs will be taking a trip back to the 18th century through his award-winning shows when he visits the Lehigh Valley this week.

Chef Walter Staib, host of the 15-time Emmy-winning culinary heritage show “A Taste of History,” will be filming an upcoming episode in Bethlehem on Wednesday. Staib is an expert in 18th century culinary history, and the PBS show documents his trips and travels to locations both in and outside of the United States to dig in — figuratively and literally — to meals and methods of centuries-old culinary traditions.

In this Christmas City-centric episode, Staib will take a look at the farm-to-table methods that have permeated Bethlehem’s culinary industry since its 18th-century founding as a Moravian community.

Where better to understand the farming traditions of early Bethlehem than the city’s Burnside Plantation? Erected in 1748 by James and Mary Burnside, members of the Moravian community, the farm site is now an interpretation of farming life from 1748 to 1848. Staib and “A Taste of History” will be filming at the location on Wednesday.

The episode will run in the early summer of 2022, according to a spokesperson for the program. The COVID-19 pandemic put the show on hiatus, but filming of the next season’s episodes will occur through the rest of the year before an air date on PBS and Amazon Prime next summer.

Unfortunately for Staib, he’s missing the Bethlehem historic site’s annual Blueberry Festival and To-Go Market by about a month, but maybe he’ll make it back up in time to pick up some pies.

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