Author and Educator

Early in her career, Alma Lach published a cookbook for children, A Child’s First Cook Book (1950), with picture recipes and simple instructions for making snacks and party foods. She went on to publish three additional cookbooks for children: The Campbell Kids Have a Party (1954), The Campbell Kids at Home (1954), and Let’s Cook (1956).

The success of Alma’s children’s cookbooks encouraged her to try writing a cookbook for men. The unpublished manuscript for this cookbook includes recipes for meat, salads, and vegetables, which she found to be “appealing to men and at the same time not too exacting.”

In 1970 Alma published Cooking à la Cordon Bleu. When the Parisian school protested about the use of its name without permission, Harper & Row declined to reissue the book under another title. The rights to the cookbook reverted to Alma and she subsequently republished it, with expanded sections on regional French cuisine, with the University of Chicago Press in 1974 as Hows and Whys of French Cooking. It was an immediate success.

During this time, she also launched a subscription cooking publication, Alma’s Almanac.  Beginning with the first issue in 1972, the Almanac provided seasonal menu plans, recipes, and other culinary hints to its monthly subscribers. In addition to her published books, Alma wrote twice-weekly columns as food editor of the Chicago Sun-Times, as well as a number of magazine articles, booklets, and brochures over the course of several decades. She also spent many years traveling, developing, and testing recipes for a book on Chinese cooking that she was never able to complete.

 

A Child’s First Cook Book
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
New York: Hart Publishing Co., 1950

Alma Lach Papers

Promotional Photograph for A Child’s First Cook Book

Alma Lach Papers

The Campbell Kids: at Home
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
Chicago: Rand McNally & Co., 1954
Alma Lach Papers

Promotional Photograph for A Child’s First Cook Book

Alma Lach Papers

Photograph of Alma Lach with group of children.


Alma Lach’s Recipes: For Seven Candlelight Diners
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
Chicago: Chicago Sun-Times, [n.d]

Alma Lach Papers

Let' s Cook
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
Chicago: Child Training Association, Inc.,1956

Alma Lach Papers

Cooking à la Cordon Bleu
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
New York: Harper and Row Publishers, 1970

Rare Books Collection, Culinary Library of Alma Lach

Postcard for book signing for Cooking à la Cordon Bleu

Alma Lach Papers

Hows and Whys of French Cooking
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974

Rare Books Collection, Culinary Library of Alma Lach

Back cover for Hows and Whys of French Cooking
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974

Rare Books Collection, Culinary Library of Alma Lach

Alma’s Almanac, Vol. 2, NO.1
Alma S. Lach (1914-2013)
[s.l.] [s.n], 1972

Alma Lach Papers

Alma’s Almanac subscription card, ca.1972

Alma Lach Papers