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all about joy

Shirley Corriher


"If you want to know why and it concerns food, Shirley Corriher, Atlanta food writer, teacher and consultant, is the person to figure it out." (Food & Wine, Nov., 1988). For over 30 years, Shirley has solved problems for everyone from home cooks, to editors and writers, to large companies like Pillsbury and Procter & Gamble, to Julia Child.

After graduating from Vanderbilt University, Shirley was a research biochemist for the Vanderbilt Medical School. Then, she and her former husband started Brandon Hall School where she taught everything from Chaucer to calculus and cooked for 140 teenage boys for 11 years.

She has long been a leading food writer and syndicated columnist. Shirley's book, CookWise, was the James Beard Award-winner for Best Reference and Technique Book in 1997 and has sold over 200,000 copies. Shirley continues to write a regular syndicated column (1998-present) for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate's Great Chefs Series, now the Chicago Tribune Media Services and she wrote a column for Fine Cooking for 10 years. She was Bon Appétit's Best Cooking Teacher of the Year in 2001 and received Research Chefs' Holleman Award for outstanding achievement in technical communication in 2004. She is also in Who's Who of American Women, 2002 through present, and Who's Who.

Shirley is recognized in grocery stores and airports as the "Mad Scientist" on Alton Brown's Good Eats TV show. She has appeared on many different TV shows, including once on ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live with Snoop Dog as her fry chef. Shirley is a noted speaker and teacher from Australia to Sicily, keeping audiences spellbound with her descriptions of the scientific processes behind cooking.


Shirley worked alongside Maggie and Arch, lending us her expertise in the scientific realm of food. In particular, Shirley provided detailed answers to our questions for the sections on starches, leavenings, and flour as Maggie reviewed and updated the Know Your Ingredients chapter in JOY.