Women who Cook(ed) in Canada

October is Women’s History Month in Canada, and I think it’s important to recognize the meaningful contribution of women who cook and cooked in Canada. Women’s history until recently was often overlooked, ignored, or at best a foot note, but the women who cooked and wrote about it, who told their story, (which is our story) of time and place, wrote as eloquently and passionately as any historian writing from a male perspective, in an ivy covered building on a university campus

I’m offering an incomplete list and for this, I apologize. There are women who have fed both our bellies and our souls whose names will never be known. However, the women on this list have fed my soul, given me joy and influenced my journey, and for this I say, “thank you.”

Catherine Parr Traill                         Edna Staebler                        Mary Moore

Madame Benoit                                 Kate Aitkens                          Margo Oliver

Helen Gougeon                                 Dorothy Duncan                    Carol Ferguson

Margaret Fraser                                Rose Murray                          Anita Stewart

Elizabeth Baird                                  Elizabeth Ivanski

The entire test kitchen staff (past and present) at Canadian Living Magazine

And all women everywhere (past and present) who have shared their time, stories, and added their recipes to those small, spiral bound or even sometimes stapled, fund raising cookbooks. These books are a true snapshot of our lives, of time and place, across our vast and amazing country. Ps, I am a Canadian women who cooks!


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