Questions for Kimball: Tell Us More about the Cook’s Illustrated Intro

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Christopher Kimball, the founder and editor of Cook’s Illustrated and Cook’s Country magazines and star of “America’s Test Kitchen” on PBS, asked for questions from Kitchen readers.

This week, we’re posting his replies. In today’s Q&A, we get a taste of his dry New England wit:

What’s the inspiration for the folksy introductions at the start of each issue of Cook’s Illustrated?

Well, what do you want to read, boring stories about how we decided to put in that issue? (This is what most editor letters consist of.) I guess that the short answer is that since it is my company I can do whatever I want!

Seriously, I have always felt that cooking is not a hobby or special occasion activity. It lies at the heart of the good life, however one wishes to define that term. Since I learned to cook on a mountain farm in Vermont back in the 1960s, that is my reference point for all things related to the kitchen. I can still taste the molasses cookies and the Anadama bread and feel the heat of the wood cookstove. (I still cook on a wood cookstove whenever I am in Vermont.)

And, if for those readers who find my editorials a rather odd juxtaposition with the more scientific material in the rest of the magazine, that’s okay. At least the recipes work!

— Christopher Kimball