Betty Crocker's Cookbook

Betty Crocker, Author Prentice Hall $25 (432p) ISBN 978-0-13-073768-7
In an age when the leisure suit is considered ``classic,'' it is reassuring that a true example of the term exists. Now in its seventh incarnation since 1950, this cookbook still carries weight. Like its predecessors, it offers the comforting, literal-minded approach of the original, explaining basic techniques clearly but without condescension. The 40th-anniversary edition features dozens of recipes from previous editions among the nearly 1000 selections, as well as others from more ancient sources (e.g., The 1910 Gold Medal Flour Cook Book ) . Current culinary trends have been integrated into the book, with more emphasis on fresh fruits and vegetables, pasta and fish. The new fish and shellfish chapter is six times the length of its 1950 counterpart and contains, in addition to the ubiquitous ``Creamy Tuna Casserole,'' such modern fare as mahimahi in fennel sauce. Each chapter ends with ``fix-it-fast'' tips and nutrition tables listing calorie, cholesterol and nutritional analyses. And, in answer to the current interest in food history, sidebars recount such tidbits as how ``Lobster Newberg'' got its name (not from a man named Newberg) and how our views of garlic have altered. Few popular artifacts reflect cultural change as indirectly, yet thoroughly, as a cookbook, and few cookbooks mark 20th-century change as well as Betty Crocker's. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1991
Release date: 09/01/1991
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-671-85039-5
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