Death Of A Book

(Alternate Title: The Borg Book) Quickly, the back story: Katherine is moving, and her move is going oh-so-much-more higglely-pigglely than mine will since she's moving across countries and I'm moving across town if the house is ever done. And she made Butterscotch Brownies, and mentioned the recipe can be found in The Joy Of Cooking, but only an old edition and hooked me up with an article about the various editions which mentioned the Butterscotch Brownies at the end. Although it doesn't give the actual recipe and I'm going to insist she send it to me (like she has NOTHING else to do) when her world settles down! Which I hope is soon, because I NEED a good recipe for those. How selfish am I !?! Note to Katherine: I'd hope your world settled down soon even if you didn't have a stranglehold on that recipe :)

Anyway, The Joy Of Cooking is a perfect example of when bad things happen to good books! The original was brilliant reading (although it sounds like questionable cooking). The next few were ok. Then, the author died and her untalented and socially-liberal descendents started churning out dreck. Which is why I don't own the book. I have looked at it a few time, since people rave over it, but never been impressed or charmed with the ones I looked at that were the current editions. I had no idea I was being decieved!

Here's a tip I've heard: Look for the 1951 edition at used bookstores. Or the earlier ones. The lastest edition doesn't have the Butterscotch Brownie recipe.

And we all know: I have no fear of butter! Cook boldly! Lard is your friend! Cream! Salt! People that don't like vegetables have never had vegetables cooked right!

I say that last part because thinking about cooking leads me to think about something a friend told me a few months ago. We moved here about three years ago, which is not enough time to run through my whole repetoire of recipes (and yes, I say "repetoire" because cooking is so performing). A friend told me she'd now try anything I cooked because she doesn't even like coconut and the coconut cake I made was so temptingly pretty she tried a bite of her husbands and discovered that she DOES like coconut, if I make it! And a few other dishes. And now she's come to the startleling realization that maybe lots of the foods she doesn't like is really her not liking those foods cooked poorly.

Which is a shame. Because with very little effort, ANYONE can be a good cook. The key lies in finding a good cookbook. Which is SO not the current edition of The Joy Of Cooking. Who knows? Maybe I'll write one. Maybe a very basic one my boys could use. Hmmmm. Like I don't have enough on my plate! But, now the urge has been sparked. Maybe ... after the move. Maybe ... the boys want cooking lessons anyway. Maybe ...


I so agree with you. I asked my mother to buy me a copy of Joy of Cooking when she visited America. She brought it all the way back to NZ for me and I was so disappointed when I saw it was missing my favourite recipe from my mother's old edition - the butterscotch brownies.

Joanne Harland | 11/17/2008 - 08:06 AM
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