If I asked you to name five famous trailblazing women of the culinary arts who weren't propelled to fame by Food Network, who would be on your list?
Julia Child, Edna Lewis, M.F.K. Fisher, Irma Rombauer, Alice Waters?
What about Malinda Russell, author of the 1866 publication Domestic Cook Book: Containing a Careful Selection of Useful Receipts for the Kitchen (believed to be the first cookbook by a black American)?
Or Marie Harel, creator of Camembert cheese?
Or Cristeta Comerford, first woman and nonwhite person to serve as White House executive chef?
Or Sarah Josepha Hale, author of Mary Had a Little Lamb and the woman behind the push to create a national holiday of gratitude and unity, aka Thanksgiving.
Or Hattie Burr, compiler and editor of The Woman Suffrage Cook Book published in November 1886 and the first of several volumes published to raise funds for the suffrage movement.
Or Melitta Bentz, inventor of the paper coffee filter? (I thank Bentz daily as I prepare my morning coffee using the cone and paper filter that bear her name.)
All of these women, (save Rombauer and Waters) and dozens more are profiled in A Woman's Place: The Inventors, Rumrunners, Lawbreakers, Scientists & Single Moms Who Changed the World With Food by Deepi Ahluwalia and Stef Ferrari ($25, Little Brown).
The book, illustrated by Jessica Olah, combines so many of my passions — cooking, women's equality, writing and history, to name a few.
From dishwashers to doughnuts, chances are there was a woman with an untold story behind it.
Speaking of doughnuts, the book includes 10 or so recipes, including this one, a nod to Elizabeth Gregory, mother of the modern-day doughnut.
Baked Brown Butter Lemon Doughnuts With Lemon Hazelnut Glaze
For the doughnuts:
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups cake flour, sifted
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup turbinado sugar (coarse brown sugar such as Sugar in the Raw)
½ cup dark brown sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1 cup whole milk
For the glaze:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup toasted hazelnuts, finely chopped
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Lightly coat a doughnut pan with vegetable oil.
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter, stirring occasionally. The butter will foam and turn golden brown with the milk solids separating from the butterfat. Once the milk solids begin to brown on the bottom of the pan, scrape them to loosen (if necessary) and remove pan from heat. Immediately pour into a small bowl; cool completely.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugars and lemon zest. Whisk to combine.
In a separate bowl or measuring cup, whisk the eggs, milk and cooled brown butter. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, folding batter until just combined and no dry streaks or lumps are visible.
Spoon batter into the prepared doughnut pan, filling each well three-quarters full.
Bake 10 minutes or until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool.
For the glaze: Combine the melted butter, confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon water and the vanilla in a mixing bowl. Whisk until smooth. Dip one side of each cooled doughnut into the glaze, letting the excess drip back into the bowl. Place glazed doughnuts on a wire rack. Sprinkle evenly with chopped hazelnuts. Let glaze dry completely before serving.
Serve the same day or store overnight in a brown paper bag in a cool, dry place.
Makes 1 dozen.
Recipe adapted from A Woman's Place: The Inventors, Rumrunners, Lawbreakers, Scientists & Single Moms Who Changed the World With Food by Deepi Ahluwalia and Stef Ferrari
Food on 03/20/2019
Print Headline: Female trailblazers shaped cuisine