Perhaps the most fascinating of these cookbooks came from Pittsburgh in 1915. The Suffrage Cook Book was a sumptuous cake layered with recipes, celebrity endorsements, photographs and saucy jokes…. The contributors were all women, apart from a few celebrity male feminists like writer Jack London, who sent in two recipes.”
The article also names a number of suffragist names, including some we know, along with their occupations (real estate investor! obstetrician! writer!).
For a more in-depth look at women’s food history, NYT has a lovely profile of Edna Lewis, an African-American cookbook writer and activist, and also one of the chefs discussed in The Jemima Code (linked earlier). This profile by Francis Lam includes some beautiful passages about growing up and cooking in rural Virginia:
When Lewis was growing up in Freetown, she learned that there was a season truly perfect for frying chickens–late spring to early summer, when the birds were the right size and had the right feed–just as there was a season for peaches and a season for blackberries. Foods, Lewis argued, are always temporal, so all good tastes are special. And when you have only a few chances every year to make something, you make it well. You use home-rendered lard to cook the bird. You brown the breasts first, then lay them on top of the sizzling legs so that they finish cooking gently in the heat above the pan. You slip in a slice of country ham to season the fat. That’s how you give thanks for it.
I made a Scenes of Eating Tumblr. I know, I know, it seems like social media overkill, considering that I already have Twitter and Pinterest and whatnot. But I realized that I was daily passing over a great deal of content of every imaginable type–comics, Instagram art, infographics, videos–without any way to find it again, since only some of that content ever makes it into my link roundups. The Tumblr of Eating has an index, so I can reblog the whimsical and non sequitur to my heart’s content without fear of burying the interesting and the beautiful. And you can expect a lot of whimsy and non sequitur on this Tumblr: all the food-centric memes, webcomics, and video game .gifs I’ve previously restrained myself from sharing here!
Yesterday we saw that Kant preferred dining with 3-9 companions, and believed that dining alone was not restorative for the hungry intellectual. Now Modern Farmer reports on some Australian research that shows that people who live alone eat more unhealthily than others. You know, just once I want someone to interview me about my solitary eating habits and incorporate it into data about how vast demographics eat–“people who live alone” or “intellectuals”” or “Americans.”
“What did you have for lunch today, Sara of Scenes of Eating?”
“A big bowl of this beef kimchi soup that I made from a pound of organic skirt steak, some scallions, cellophane noodles, and a jar and a half of the kimchi I made from the Napa cabbage and daikon radish I got in my CSA a couple of weeks ago. This soup cost me about $13 to make and yielded six quarts.”
“Ohhhkay. What did you have for dinner?”
“A little radiatore pasta with roasted delicata squash and pesto that I made from carrot leaves, cilantro, and toasted pumpkin seeds. And a little brussels sprouts slaw. It tastes better on the second day. And red wine, obviously.”
I’ve been working at a wine store a couple days a week, and part of the business is to give samples of wine to customers and talk to them about the qualities of the wine using terms I have only recently learned, so naturally I was amused that this sommelier is turning elevated wine-speak into silly comics. I assure you that I have not and will never describe a wine like any kind of woman, regardless of how arty or earthy the wine in question may be.