Marion Cunningham – the cookbook author who taught many how to cook and who championed the power of a home cooked family meal – has died.
Her books such as The Fannie Farmer Cookbook and Learning to Cook have been a staple in many a kitchen, with parents – who may not have had much experience making family meals in the past – embracing her simple, healthy and affordable recipes. She was an outspoken advocate for the importance of home cooking and having families sit down and eat together. “No one is cooking at home anymore, so we are losing all the wonderful lessons we learn at the dinner table,” Cunningham said in an interview back in 2002.
“Too many families seldom sit down together; it’s gobble and go,” she wrote in her preface to The Fannie Farmer Cookbook. “Eating food on the run, reheating it in relays in the microwave as one dashes off to a committee meeting, another to basketball practice. As a result we are losing an important value. Food is more than fodder. It is an act of giving and receiving because the experience at table is a communal sharing; talk begins to flow, feelings are expressed, and a sense of well-being takes over.”
Marion Cunningham passed away in Walnut Creek, CA – at the age of ninety – after suffering from several medical conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and respiratory problems.
Marion Cunningham may be gone, but let’s hope her lessons – and recipes – last forever.