Library and Archives Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Institutional links

ARCHIVED - Bon appétit!
A Celebration of Canadian Cookbooks

Archived Content

This archived Web page remains online for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. This page will not be altered or updated. Web pages that are archived on the Internet are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats of this page on the Contact Us page.

History of Canadian Cookbooks

Revolutions In The Kitchen

Food Company Publications

Over the years, Metropolitan Life has provided simple cookbooks for beginning cooks. This early version includes advice on nutrition and the daily requirements for healthy living.

An advertisement included in the cookbook stressed the superior quality of its featured product: "We take the most painstaking care to assure that the quality of Magic Baking Powder is always maintained at the highest level. Its tremendous popularity is due to the fact that – A Satisfied Customer is our Best Advertisement – and more than three out of every four housewives in Canada to-day use Magic Baking Powder exclusively."

Billed as the first truly Canadian cookbook, published in both French and English and sponsored, appropriately, by Laura Secord Candy Shops, this attractive and useful book identifies the regions from which each of the wide-ranging recipes originates. "One thing we did prove conclusively: there is a Canadian cuisine, and it is unique in all the world" (p. 9).

In a recent interview, Elizabeth Driver explained: "I have been handling historical cookbooks as artefacts instead of using them. Now using them I hear the voice of the women behind the words" (London Free Press, June 4, 2003).