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a dollup of joy

March 10, 2009

joy-of-cookingAfter hearing Veronique‘s excitement about The Joy of Cooking, I purchased a 1973 copy for $6 of  at an antique shop. This books was first published in the 1930s, and claims to be America’s #1 Bestselling Cookbook. Culinary delights are contained therein, but so far I’ve mainly enjoyed its pleasures of the literary variety! Here are some selections to whet your appetite:

  • “Too often the menu-builder takes herself too seriously and tops off a rich edifice with a disastrously rich dessert when fresh fruit with, perhaps, a cheese would be a far happier conclusion of the meal for all concerned. Well worth exploiting are the virtues of fruit…” (p. 105).
  • “All pears seem to keep congenial company with cheese” (p. 118).
  • “To become an amateur champion, keep in mind first and foremost that this most delicate and challenging of pastries must be made the way porcupines make love—that is, very, very carefully” (p. 593).
  • “Necessity is the mother of invention; and convenience gave birth to the can and the frozen package” (p. 163).
  • “It is a thrill to possess shelves well stocked with home-canned food. In fact, you will find their inspection–often surreptitious—and the pleasure of serving the fruits of your labor comparable only to a clear conscience or a very becoming hat” (p. 746).
  • “Coffee has always thrived on adversity—just as people in adversity have thrived on it” (p. 26).
  • “Serve imaginative combinations, but remember that, unlike the opera overture the hor d’oeuvre course should not forecast any of the joys that are to follow in its train” (p. 63).
  • “We remember the final scene of a Maeterlinck play. The stage is strewn with personages dead and dying. The sweet young heroine whimpers, ‘I am not happy here.’ Then the head of the house—or what remains of it—an ancient  noble, asks quaveringly, ‘Will there be salad for supper?'”
6 Comments leave one →
  1. March 10, 2009 12:29 pm

    Last summer I purchased a $3 1997 edition at a garage sale. I always find that if I’m menu planning using this cookbook, it usually takes much longer than normal because I just end up reading on and on about not-menu-planning foods, topics, etc. Pretty fun though!

  2. March 10, 2009 9:16 pm

    Now I wish my version wasn’t so new, but was as entertaining as yours, Jess!

  3. Molly Piper permalink
    March 11, 2009 10:08 am

    hahahaha! I’m gonna have to keep my eye out for that one at the thrift store.

  4. boltjason permalink
    March 11, 2009 4:34 pm

    Bwa ha, ha, birthing frozen packages! Ah Jess, I wish I could get my husband to stay in the country so that I could pop up to Minneapolis to see you! He’s picking up our Thai friend in Tokyo this weekend and (hopefully) the whole family will be going to Nicaragua over Spring Break.


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