Bob Sessions, the head of publishing for Penguin Group Australia, said the company has no plans to recall copies from bookshops, which would be "extremely hard," the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
"We're mortified that this has become an issue of any kind and why anyone would be offended, we don't know," Sessions said. "When it comes to the proofreader, of course, they should have picked it up, but proofreading a cookbook is an extremely difficult task," he said. "I find that quite forgivable."
The company, he said, has told bookstores, "If anyone is small-minded enough to complain about this very ... silly mistake, then we will happily replace (the book) for them."
The misprint occurred in a recipe for spelt tagliatelle with sardines and prosciutto in a cookbook in which almost every recipe calls for ground black pepper. Pulping and reprinting the 7,000 copies will cost Penguin $20,000.