The Joy of Cooking, is an icon in countless American kitchens. Many generations of people have learned to cook from this book, including Julia Child!
The History of The Joy of Cooking!
Original author, Irma Rombauer was a well known in her community for her civic and cultural activities. She often hosted women’s luncheons and formal dinners, delighting in sharing her joy with others. Irma considered social interaction more important than food and surprised many people who knew her, when she announced she was going to write a cookbook as a way to occupy her mind and provide an income for herself following her husbands suicide in 1930.
In 1931 “The Joy of Cooking: A Compilation of Reliable Recipes, with a Casual Culinary Chat” was published. It was self-published and Irma had 3,000 copies printed. She sold the copies personally and had friends place her books in different bookshops and gift shops. In addition to basic recipes, Irma wanted to ensure her recipes could be made by home-cooks without complicated ingredients, so in her typical hostess style, she added friendly advice, told stories of her family and shared tips and tricks on how to be successful in the kitchen. Her style was simple and conversational. Her cookbook was (and is) different from the majority in that her recipes are not listed with ingredients first, then instructions. They are written in what’s become known as the “action method” where ingredients are in bold, and listed throughout the recipe, as needed, step-by-step. This method has become a trademark of the Joy style.
Now, New and Updated!
Having gone through several editions and with over 18 million (and counting) copies sold in it’s over 90 year history, Irmas great-grandson John Becker, with his wife Megan Scott, have lovingly and painstakingly revised and updated this classic cookbook. It is a harmonious balance of 600 new recipes and 4,000 classics, some of which stretch all the way back to the original edition.
I was fortunate enough to meet John and Megan at a luncheon hosted by Melissa’s Produce. They shared the family legacy that is Joy of Cooking, as well as demonstrated the simplicity of a classic Olive Oil Cake.
We were able to sample several dishes from the book, prepared by Melissa’s amazing team of chefs. My favorite bites were the Roasted Cauliflower Soup (page 105) and the Olive Oil Flatbread Crackers (page 49) with a delicious Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Dip called Muhammara (page 53).
If you want to see and learn more about both the book and this cute couple, here is the link to their presentation on YouTube: John Becker and Megan Scott in Melissa’s Kitchen.
If you’re interested in purchasing the book for yourself or as a gift this holiday season (and it’s a GREAT buy!) you can do that here: The Joy of Cooking!
This “Trusted Kitchen Classic for a New Generation of Joy” is an extensive tome and incredible resource for anyone who finds themselves in the kitchen, hungry and wanting to eat.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to dig in to this delicious book and start creating!
disclaimer: I was gifted a copy of the book Joy of Cooking, but all opinions are 100% my own.