This was long ago, before everybody simply asked Uncle Google about everything. As usual, I was listening to the radio while cooking; I think it must have been NPR (National Public Radio, in the US).
The program featured an interview with two female authors of a cookbook. They had recently published an updated version of their book.
The interviewer asked if it was easier to write cookbooks nowadays, maybe with the thought that more people cook from scratch, rather than buying bake-off items or TV dinners.
“No”, answered to cookbook authors, ” it’s the other way around. We have to be more specific, since the basic knowledge often is lacking. Before, it could say in a cookbook: Make a brown sauce, and then add …whatever. Now, we have to explain how to make a brown sauce.” They provided an example:
” In the previous edition we wrote, in a recipe, ’grease bottom of pan’. We actually got sued by a man who’s kitchen had gone up in flames. He claimed he had followed our recipe; greased the bottom of the frying pan, put it over the gas range of his stove, and wavoom! Ended up the entire kitchen went up in flames. So, in the new edition we specify ‘grease inside bottom of pan with oil or butter’.”