Monday, July 12, 2010

Closed: The I Hate to Cook Book Review & Giveaway

"Barbara ... 14"

Full Description

"There are two kinds of people in this world: the ones who don't cook out of and have NEVER cooked out of THE I HATE TO COOK BOOK, and the other kind...The I HATE TO COOK people consist mainly of those who find other things more interesting and less fattening, and so they do it as seldom as possible. Today there is an Annual Culinary Olympics, with hundreds of cooks from many countries ardently competing. But we who hate to cook have had our own Olympics for years, seeing who can get out of the kitchen the fastest and stay out the longest." 

- Peg Bracken

Philosopher's Chowder. Skinny Meatloaf. Fat Man's Shrimp. Immediate Fudge Cake. These are just a few of the beloved recipes from Peg Bracken's classic I HATE TO COOK BOOK. Written in a time when women were expected to have full, delicious meals on the table for their families every night, Peg Bracken offered women who didn't revel in this obligation an alternative: quick, simple meals that took minimal effort but would still satisfy. 

50 years later, times have certainly changed - but the appeal of THE I HATE TO COOK BOOK hasn't. 

This book is for everyone, men and women alike, who wants to get from cooking hour to cocktail hour in as little time as possible.

About Peg Bracken

Born Ruth Eleanor Bracken in Filer, Idaho, in 1918, Peg Bracken authored The I Hate to Cook Book(1960), written for women who scorned the notion of the domestic diva.
She grew up in St Louis, Missouri, graduating from Antioch College in 1940.  She then moved to Portland, Oregon, christening herself Peg after her nickname, “Poots,” drew chuckles and looks of disdain from editors and other literati.
Her first book was The 9-Months’ Wonder (1958, with Helen Berry Moore), a collection of observations on child-bearing.
Before publishing The I Hate to Cook Book she worked as an advertising copywriter, producing a syndicated cartoon, Phoebe, Get Your Man, with Homer Groening.  Homer was the father and inspiration for the eponymous character on the animated series, The Simpsons, created by his son, Matt.
The idea for The I Hate to Cook Book sprang from a lunchtime cabal known as The Hags.  Following on many discussions of culinary contempt, fueled by martinis and macaroni salad, the book was essentially a set of recipes from Hags and their associates, strung together with Peg’s often mordant narrative.
The manuscript was rejected by six male editors before finally earning the respect of a female counterpart, who saw potential in Bracken’s contrarian thesis.  It was illustrated by Hilary Knight, known for his work on Kay Thompson’s Eloise books.  
The first edition of The I Hate to Cook Book sold 85,000 copies in two years (ultimately some three million), making Bracken a household name in the U.S., where she toured nationally, soon becoming a TV spokesperson for Birds Eye Foods.
Other “I Hate” books followed:  The I Hate to Housekeep Book (1962); an Appendix to The I Hate to Cook Book (1966); The I Hate to Cook Almanack (1980); and The Compleat I Hate to Cook Book(1988).  Moving to the subject of etiquette she published I Try to Behave Myself (1964) and I Didn’t Come Here to Argue (1969).  Later, she also wrote But I Wouldn’t Have Missed it for the World (1973) about travelling, then her memoir, A Window Over the Sink (1981), and finally On Getting Old for the First Time (1996).
In addition to her books, Bracken penned for many American publications:  The Oregonian; the San Francisco Chronicle; Family Circle; The Atlantic Monthly and others.  Though forever linked to life in the kitchen, she considered herself primarily a humorist.
She passed away peacefully in her Portland home on October 20, 2007, at the age of 89.

Be sure to check out the I Hate to Cook Book Facebook Page and be sure and check out  the blog by Peg's daughter, Jo Bracken.

Buy It
You can get your own copy of The I Hate to Cook Book at Amazon.

Win It
Enter to win your own copy of The I Hate to Cook Book.

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For complete contest rules, please see our Contest Statement and Blog Disclosure. Contest ends at 11:59pm EST on July 23rd,2010 when a winner will be drawn at random and announced the next day. When commenting, please include your email address. I will notify the winners and they will have 48 hours to respond!
This was not a paid post. My own opinions were used based on my perceptions and experience. Thank you to Anna at Hachette Books, who supplied the products for review and giveaway.

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