Skip to main content
Cover for American Advertising Cookbooks

American Advertising Cookbooks

How Corporations Taught Us to Love Bananas, Spam, and Jell-O

Christina Ward


List Price: 29.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


American Advertising Cookbooks, How Corporations Taught Us To Love Spam, Bananas, and Jell&ndashO explores the world of Twentieth Century food culture combining historical cookbook images and intelligent research into an entertaining and accessible history of American food.

American Advertising Cookbooks: How Corporations Taught Us to Love Spam, Bananas, and Jell-O is a deeply researched and entertaining survey of twentieth century American food. Connecting cultural, social, and geopolitical aspects, author Christina Ward (Preservation: The Art & Science of Canning, Fermentation, and Dehydration, Process 2017) uses her expertise to tell the fascinating and often infuriating story of American culinary culture.

Readers will learn of the role bananas played in the Iran-Contra scandal, how Sigmund Freud's nephew decided Carmen Miranda would wear fruit on her head, and how Puritans built an empire on pineapples. American food history is rife with crackpots, do-gooders, con men, and scientists all trying to build a better America-while some were getting rich in the process.

Loaded with full-color images, Ward pulls recipes and images from her vast collection of cookbooks and a wide swath of historical advertisements to show the influence of corporations on our food trends. Though easy to mock, once you learn the true history, you will never look at Jell-O the same way again

American Advertising Cookbooks, How Corporations Taught Us To Love Bananas, Spam, and Jell&ndashO features full-color images and essays uncovering the origins of popular foods. Makes a great gift for everyone interested in food history, graphic design, advertising, and American history.

Process, 9781934170748, 239pp.

Publication Date: January 15, 2019

About the Author

Christina Ward teaches notoriously raucous preservation classes and serves as a volunteer mentor to urban farmers, small-scale food producers, and question answerer for people all over the country trying to save their pickles from disaster. Her work focuses on the history the foods we eat and the stories of the people who make that food taste good. She is a contributing writer to Serious Eats, resident food expert for Fox6 Real Milwaukee (television), and former columnist for Edible Milwaukee. She has also written for Remedy Quarterly, Put An Egg On It!, and The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.