One of my icons is Betty Fussell, who has been researching and writing about food for over 50 years. Her memoir, My Kitchen Wars is a great read and a wonderful view into to the lives of the women of her generation who were laying the ground work for the woman’s lib movement.
One of her greatest tomes is The Story of Corn which has been recently re-published. I have yet to try her cookbooks but her ability to research and tell the story is not only thorough, but passionate. She has a new book out about the history of beef in the U.S. Raising Steaks, which is sure to be a thriller.