Irma S. Rombauer : biography
Irma Starkloff Rombauer (October 30, 1877 – October 14, 1962) was an American author of The Joy of Cooking."When St. Louis housewife Irma von Starkloff Rombauer (1877-1962) self-published The Joy of Cooking in 1931, she was, at age 54, a total amateur in the kitchen. She sets Rombauer’s German-American roots in the context of a thriving Midwestern immigrant community and also unravels both her and her daughter’s tangled, acrimonious relationship with Bobbs-Merrill." It is one of the world’s most-published cookbooks, having been in print continuously since 1936. Of German descent, Rombauer graduated from the all-girls preparatory school Mary Institute in 1901 and later attended Washington University in St. Louis. Rombauer privately published The Joy of Cooking in 1931 in St. Louis, Missouri. It was illustrated by her daughter, Marion Rombauer Becker, also a graduate of Mary Institute (1931) and at the time an art teacher at local private school John Burroughs School. The Rombauers self-published early editions of the book; it was picked up by a commercial printing house, the Bobbs-Merrill Company, in 1936.
In 1998, Irma Rombauer was inducted into the St. Louis Walk of Fame.
She is portrayed by Frances Sternhagen in the 2009 film Julie & Julia.