ewen and donabel/flickr
Three times in my professional life I have felt that I was dead or invisible. Once was when I won the James Beard lifetime achievement award—was life over? Once was when my dear once-upon-a-time assistant Christopher Styler wrote a piece about me, and my husband said I could now die as I had had my best obituary. The most recent was Wednesday, when I read an article in the Wall Street Journal about microwaves and cooking.
It did—in the online version—mention the original appearance of my book Microwave Gourmet, but the entire piece negated what I understood and felt had happened in the years before and after I wrote the book, when the microwave oven became a standard appliance in everyone's kitchen. The article said that it was time for microwave ovens to get some respect and that they were now being used for cooking. Who the hundreds of thousands of people were and what they thought they were doing when they bought my book and wrote me queries and compliments I could not have said from this article.
First of all, it indicated that microwave ovens were now—at last!—important, as there are expensive ones being sold that are combinations with steam ovens. The writer did not seem to understand and certainly did not make clear that the two functions have nothing to do with each other. In fact, if the container for cooking food in the microwave oven is covered, it acts a steamer: the oven cooks by agitating water molecules in food and steaming it under pressure, rapidly.