Early Summer 2017

Change is Good

By Sydney Bender, EDITOR

Early Summer 2017

Betty Crocker wasn’t real.

In the 1800s, a flour milling company needed a fictitious name with which to sign its puzzle competition letters, and so Betty Crocker was born. The Washburn Crosby Company (now called General Mills) carried that namesake throughout its advertising department, most famously using the pseudonym as a byline for Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book, first published in 1950.

Ah, the Betty Crocker Cookbook. It is arguably America’s most famous cookbook. A staple in every kitchen, it boasts recipes for birthday cakes, pigs in a blanket and chicken tomato aspic.

For a good chunk of my youth, I loved to read when I ate; the back of a cereal box, the newspaper, books— especially cookbooks. I found joy in perusing my mother’s Betty Crocker Cookbook. It made cooking look easy.

“What’s the American man’s favorite dessert?” Betty asked in the first edition. “Most people would agree—it’s pie. And heading the list is apple pie. Followed closely by cherry pie and peach pie and lemon meringue and a lot of others. If you care about pleasing a man—bake a pie.”

As offensively as this gendered guarantee reads today, it’s an accurate depiction of life a handful of decades ago. It is a part of food history, and it helped to shape the legacy of food writing and the generations of food lovers that have followed in its footsteps.

In this issue, journalist Remy Tumin writes about how her grandparents relied heavily on cookbooks. “Today we may lean on them more for inspiration and guidelines. But for a generation of cooks, they were used religiously.” (The Cookbook Generation).

But there are still cookbooks today that we use and love, like Sarah Waldman’s newest work, Feeding a Family (Cookbook Spotlight), a beautiful book that offers readers family-friendly, easy to cook on weeknight recipes.

There are recipes we return to again and again, but sometimes change is good. This issue of edible Vineyard has had some new developments. We’re now publishing two expansive issues, rather than four smaller ones, and they’ll both hit newsstands and mailboxes during the summertime, when our readership is the largest.

Additionally, art director Emma Young has given edible Vineyard a facelift, with new style and design.

I want to thank and bid farewell to the founding photo editor Elizabeth Cecil, who has made this magazine what it is today. Her work can still be found inside the pages of edible Vineyard, as well as in many other publications around the globe.

It seemed as if summer would never come this year, and now that it has finally arrived, we can’t wait to pop open clams (Stuffies When You’re Young) and indulge in the green of the season (Ingredient).

Here’s to a year of change, and the sweet reliability of summer!