The cookbook ghostwriter feud continued today on “The Rachael Ray Show,” as guest Gwyneth Paltrow defended herself against the New York Times’ accusations that she didn’t write her own cookbook.
“Every single recipe in the book I came up with and I cooked on the spot,” Paltrow told Rachael via Skype on the show.
Paltrow’s cookbook, “My Father’s Daughter,” features recipes from blueberry muffins to corn chowder, all of which she says she created herself. “The recipes were inspired by an amazing salad that I had somewhere … a chef friend that had taught me something and this is my version of it and I would do it from scratch by myself and in the kitchen,” she said.
Ray, also a victim of the accusations, defended Paltrow. “This is your food you wrote these recipes this is the way you cooked this food in your home,” she said.
The Times article, “I Was a Cookbook Ghostwriter,” accuses many celebrity chefs of hiring ghostwriters to create their recipes with little input from the chefs themselves. Author Julia Moskin includes interviews with the alleged ghostwriters for Ray and Paltrow and writes, “The days when a celebrated chef might wait until the end of a distinguished career and spend years polishing the prose of the single volume that would represent his life’s work are gone.”
Paltrow and Ray disagreed with the article, firing back via Twitter, saying they did not use ghostwriters. “The NYTimes has opened up the discussion on what a true writer is and to me it is the person who is telling the story,” Ray said.
The author of nearly 20 cookbooks, Ray wants the Times to apologize for the article. “I so strongly agree this is how I spend a lot of my time at home, the little bit of time I have with my family I spend in front of one of these little notebooks and in front of the computer and it sort of takes away from all that to not be able to call that writing, of course, is writing.”
“The Chew” co-host Mario Batali was also included in Moskin’s article and his publisher, Daniel Halpern, said via Twitter, “I can tell you he absolutely writes his books. As many 3am MB emails attest.”
“Good Morning America” chef and contributor Sara Moulton, who is the author of several cookbooks, said, “it is just a cookbook but it has to do with integrity and everyone cares about their own image and what people think of them.”
Despite defending Moskin’s article as accurate and fair, the Times told ABC News, “It did not say that someone else wrote Rachael Ray’s, Jamie Oliver’s or Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbooks. It said that they, like many other chef-authors, had help.”