This is a favorite of mine that I reread this month. It reads partly as a cookbook, partly as a regional eating guidebook and fully as a memoir. Wolf looks back through her life by means of the food that was created, shared and discovered with family and friends throughout her life and across the country. Her stories are sweet and funny.
I love the chapter, “Dinner Disasters”. The stories are funny of course, but I also really appreciate when accomplished chefs, foodies, food professionals, etc. are willing to admit to and share their kitchen disasters. It makes me feel better about sharing my cooking disasters! The best of Wolf’s disasters is when she tried a recipe for chicken cooked in a salt crust, and her unfortunate mistake of thinking that when the recipe called for coarse rock salt that the rock salt in her garage (ice-melt, inedible) would do.
I also really like that there is a chapter called “Ode to Toast” that rightly puts simple toasted bread on a pedestal as the “ultimate comfort food”. Wolf includes history of toast, science of toast and even a recipe for toast! This chapter makes me laugh… and then go make toast.
Bonny Wolf is a monthly contributor on NPR, and is also the Managing Editor of americanfoodroots.com where she explores “why we eat what we eat.” This appears to be her only book… I hope she’ll write another.
From The Armchair Squid: a message about this fabulous book club!
“The idea is simple: on the last Friday of each month, post about the best book you’ve finished over the past month while visiting other bloggers doing the same. In this way, we’ll all have the opportunity to share our thoughts with other enthusiastic readers. Please join us:”