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For over seventy-five years, Betty Crocker has touched so many of our lives-whether being by our side when we tried our first recipe in the kitchen or helping us out with our questions about homemaking and cooking-that our kitchens seem warmer just by the mention of her name.
In the following pages, you'll read the history of this great woman and discover all the people-from homemakers to home economists-that make Betty Crocker who she is today.
THE BEGINNING OF A LEGEND
In 1921, General Mills, then a small milling company in Minnesota, held a puzzle contest and to their surprise, they received more than just contest entrees. They found themselves faced with the challenge of how best to respond to thousands of questions and requests for recipes as well as baking and cooking advice. They created Betty Crocker to do the job, and what a great job she did! Thanks to her helpful advice, she became known as a friend for trusted information about keeping a home and creating delicious food.
Although Betty was never a real person, she became real to homemakers through the years. Even today, she still receives marriage proposals! The spirit of Betty Crocker-its warmth and hospitality-lives on not only with the advice and fellowship she shares with people every day, but also through the seventy-five inspirational essays and specially chosen recipes in this book. You, too, will feel the friendship, trust, and confidence that Betty gives to all of us.
THE SPIRIT OF BETTY CROCKER CONTEST
For Betty's most recent portrait and seventy-fifth anniversary, The Spirit of Betty Crocker Contest, a nationwide essay contest was launched by General Mills to identify seventy-five exceptional women of diverse backgrounds and ages. Each contestant had to embody Betty Crocker's joy of cooking and baking, commitment to family and friends, resourcefulness and creativity in daily life, and community involvement. General Mills asked Americans to nominate special women who personify these characteristics. Choosing from among the thousands of entries received was difficult, but finally the seventy-five winners were identified.
Photographs of these lucky winners were loaded into a computer and blended together to create a composite. Artist John Stuart Ingle used the composite to paint today's Betty Crocker. This new portrait is truly a reflection of all of us! If you look closely, you'll see part of yourself there-maybe it is the friendly eyes or welcoming smile-since we all share the spirit of Betty in our hearts.
Throughout this book, you'll meet with the seventy-five extraordinary women that won The Spirit of Betty Crocker Contest. You'll get to know them by reading the loving essays written by their family and friends and the women themselves. By sharing their time, energy, love, and recipes, these remarkable women demonstrate the spirit of Betty Crocker that makes them found in the heart of the kitchen and the lives they touch! These women represent today's Betty Crocker: feeding the homeless, baking cookies for the dormitory, taking in foster children, inspiring kids to stay in school, creating a strong support system for the family-sometimes as a single parent-and all the while sharing love through the food they make. These uncommon heroines come from all walks of life, and each and every one embodies the exceptional characteristics that we know in a mother or sister, friend or teacher who has made a positive difference in our lives.
REFLECTIONS OF BETTY CROCKER
Women certainly have changed over the years, and so has Betty Crocker! Her first official portrait appeared in 1936 to celebrate the fifteenth "birthday" of her creation. Artist Neysa McMein blended the features of several of the home economists working in the Betty Crocker Kitchens at that time in an effort to create an appearance that would instill confidence in young homemakers. Since then, Betty has had seven other portraits, all striving to make her reflect the look of contemporary women and show her spirit to the women who seek her timely help.
Betty has changed through the years to reflect the hairstyles and fashions of women of the time, but you've probably noticed she always wears red with a touch of white at her neck. She appears friendly, and trustworthy, much like your best friend. She is an approachable person who makes you feel that you can do it and who will be happy for your success. She is all women-whether young or more mature, a businesswoman or a homemaker, dressed for success or for the carpool-Betty Crocker symbolizes the warmth and love people express when they gather and share wonderful homemade meals.
BETTY CROCKER DOESN'T DO IT ALONE
Over the years, the hundreds of professional women and men who have worked in the Betty Crocker Kitchens created the trust we have in Betty's advice and help. They represent a wide cross-section of the population-from young working moms and dads to empty nesters and singles-and all are dedicated to developing reliable recipes and providing the best food information possible to help you keep pace with your busy lifestyle. The Betty Crocker Kitchen staff writes the recipes so they are easy to use and understand. These recipes are created in kitchens that are like yours, using the same pans and appliances that you have, so Betty Crocker can guarantee the recipes will work as well for you as they do for the Betty Crocker Kitchens.
One of the biggest challenges in the kitchen is anticipating what you'll want to serve your family and guests in the future. We don't have crystal balls to see into everyone's homes, but we do have the Betty Crocker Kitchens collected experience and intuition. We watch for emerging new flavors and health trends and keep current with the latest cookware and equipment. We monitor menus and dishes from restaurants that are setting the latest eating trends. We sample new ingredients and exotic fruits and vegetables, and we keep current with the latest food-safety information. This way, we can offer you the most up-to-date information, acquaint you with the interesting, new foods and ingredients that are appearing in your local supermarket, and offer new flavor twists to meals.
BETTY AND YOU
Betty Crocker has spent her entire existence helping people like you who enjoy cooking. Think about how your food choices and cooking methods and interests have formed over the years. Betty has noticed these new developments, too, and has tried to respond accordingly. The Betty Crocker Kitchens are aware of how your changing lifestyle affects your cooking and eating habits. And we enjoy sharing recipes and information so you can continue to create delicious, healthful meals for you, your family, and friends.
As you read through the pages of this book, you will discover Betty's best-loved recipes, those most-requested dishes that evoke the wonderful memories of home and loved ones. You may even recognize some signature dishes of your own. These tried-and-true recipes have earned Betty Crocker the reputation of being your best friend in the kitchen, providing you with great recipes that turn out just right and taste great, too! So savor these recipes and enjoy the visits you will have with the seventy-five women who are part of today's Betty Crocker. You'll discover what you always may have guessed-and what we have always known-that there is a little bit of Betty Crocker in all of us.
From "Betty Crocker's Best-Loved Recipes." Text Copyright 1998 General Mills. Used with permission of the publisher, Wiley Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
* Betty Crocker Your Best Friend in the Kitchen
__ It's In The Bag
__ The First Cookbook
__ Radio Betty
__ Kitchen Tested
__ How Did Betty Get Her Name?
__ First Lady of Food
__ Dear Betty...
__ Betty Crocker Kitchens Resource Center
__ Betty on the World Wide Web
__ Betty's TV Show
__ Home Recipe Test Panel
__ Betty's Kitchen is Just Like Yours!
__ It's Dinnertime--Do You Know Where Your Fondue Pot Is?
__ Search for the Homemaker of Tomorrow
__ Consumer Services Department
__ The First Betty Crocker Cookbook
__ The Spice of Life
__ Betty, Will You Marry Me?
__ Betty Crocker's Basic Cookbook
__ Betty's Signature
__ Letters, Letters, Letters
__ The Betty Crocker Kitchens
__ Impossible Pies
__ Bisquick Baking Mix
__ Electric Appliances
__ The Red Spoon
__ With a Sift, Sift Here...
__ Betty Crocker Kitchen Tours? Follow the Red Spoons...
__ Betty Helps Out
__ Betty's Gadgets
__ How Do You Measure Up?
__ Say Cheese!
__ Bountiful Bread
__ High-Rising Flour
__ The "Gold Medal" Flour
__ What Puts the POP in Popovers?
__ Cake Making Made Easy
__ Cake Mix
__ Cake Discovery of the Century
__ Hot Fudge Sundae Cake
__ Expanding Betty's Sphere of Influence
__ Gold Medal Flour Cookbooks
__ Other Betty Crocker Cookbooks
__ Power Grocery Shopping
__ Remodeling the Kitchens
__ The Cookie Jar