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Women’s History in the World of Food

Deborah O'Kelly at Emerson Hospital Walk event

Women’s History in the World of Food

As palettes have changed and we grow more conscious of both nutrition and delicacy in the foods we eat, some remarkable women have made extraordinary contributions in both areas. With March being Women’s History Month, we want to highlight a few special people in the world of food.

Fannie Farmer portrait

Fannie Farmer around 1900 (Courtesy of the Boston Public Library)

Fannie Farmer

Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, Fannie studied at the Boston Cooking-School from 1887 – 1889. She learned the connection between food and health, along with other skills in the field of domestic science. Fannie was such an accomplished student, the director asked her to become the school principal in 1891.

As bakers, we need consistent preparation when making granola. We thank Fannie for introducing the concept of using standardized measuring spoons and cups in “The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book.” That cookbook is still in print today, now known as “The Fannie Farmer Cookbook.”


Julia Child cooking

Julia Child in her kitchen as photographed by ©Lynn Gilbert, 1978, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Julia Child

Julia was a cooking teacher, author and TV personality. Julia learned to cook from reading “The Joy of Cooking” and was known for making French cuisine recipes accessible to Americans in the 1960s. She was a co-author of “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” and created a TV show called The French Chef, which won several awards.

While demonstrating recipes on her show, Julia taught her audience that they didn’t need to go out to a fancy restaurant to enjoy elegant, restaurant-quality food right at home. Our love of baking came from our homemade recipes, so we can relate to Julia’s love of home cooking!


Alice Waters portrait

Waters at the US Embassy in Berlin, February 2015

Alice Waters

Alice is a chef, restaurateur, and author. She is widely known for creating the “farm-to-table” movement and pioneering California cuisine (dishes driven by local and sustainable ingredients). Alice’s restaurant Chez Panisse opened in Berkeley, California in 1971, introducing the public to the “farm-to-table” meal model and is still running today!

Alice has authored cook books and is a national public policy advocate for universal access to healthy, organic foods. We are inspired by her use of all-natural, sustainable ingredients while making healthy and delicious foods!


We also want to recognize Golden Girl Granola owner Deborah O’Kelly for establishing the first woman-owned granola business in Massachusetts’ Nashoba Valley. Congratulations to the women who make beyond delicious history every day!

Deborah O'Kelly, owner of Golden Girl Granola

Deborah O’Kelly, owner of Golden Girl Granola