February 18, 2009

In The News: The Perils of Homemade

The Boston Globe is reporting on Brian Wansink's latest study (published in the Annals of Internal Medicine) -- caloric increases in The Joy of Cooking cookbooks over the past eight decades.

"The study, which looked at how classic recipes have changed during the past 70 years, found a nearly 40 percent increase in calories per serving for nearly every recipe reviewed."

Adding to the problem? It doesn't appear anyone is complaining -- or noticing!

Considering that the average dinner plate's diameter increased 36 percent between 1965 and 2005, I can't say I'm very surprised.

My two favorite bits of trivia?

"The chicken gumbo... went from making 14 servings at 228 calories each in the 1936 edition, to making 10 servings at 576 calories each in the 2006 version."

And then there's my dear colleague Lisa Young, who notes that the same exact brownie recipe yielded 30 brownie squares in the 1970s -- but only 15 in a 1997 edition of the book!

As an aside, from my own personal experience, I have found that baking recipes in Argentina tend to use approximately 25 percent less sugar than their US-based counterparts.

1 comment:

WifeMomChocoholic said...

I have noticed that in many recipes. Most recipes that I take from recipezaar.com have HUGE servings. My family usually gets twice the servings the recipe says it feeds and when I post a recipe, people sometimes complain that it doesn't make as many servings as I say it does.