October 12, 2009
While we were creating gourmet.com, it didn’t feel right to be posting here. But now that Gourmet is, sadly, a piece of the past, this is where you’ll find me.
At the moment I’m still working on Gourmet’s Adventures with Ruth, which debuts this weekend on public television. Right now I’m viewing the rough cut of the China episode, getting really hungry as I watch myself and Dean (Fearing) cooking spicy eggplant, the best sweet and sour pork I’ve ever tasted (the secret is a syrup made from osmanthus flowers), and wonderful little egg-wrapped dumplings. We were in Yangshuo, a stunningly gorgeous part of the world. The whole time I was there I had the surreal feeling that I had walked right into one of those achingly beautiful 16th century Chinese ink drawings.
I’m still on booktour, too, and as soon as I know where I’m going to be, and when, I’ll post that. Right now I can tell you that I’ll be reading at The Book Loft in Great Barrington this Saturday at 1, and I’ll be in Philadelphia on October 26th. Tomorrow I’m going to be talking to Terry Gross on NPR.
You can follow me on Twitter, too.
April 23, 2009
My new book, Not Becoming My Mother is just out, and I’ll be traveling all over the country in the next month or so. My next appearance will be in Philadelphia on Tuesday, April 28th. To view my entire tour,please go to gourmet.com. You can also follow me on Twitter.
August 25, 2007
Curious about my schedule? I’ve been at The MacDowell Colony for the past few weeks, working on a new book. And next week I go to England,to give the keynote address at the Oxford Symposium on Food. The topic this year is: Food and Morality. Plenty to talk about there. After I give the speech, I’ll post it here. At the moment I’m off to the farmers’ market to buy corn and peaches. Dinner tonight is going to be grilled steak, charred over a very hot fire, sliced tomatoes from my garden and fresh peach pie with homemade ice cream. Can’t wait. Wish you were here.
June 26, 2007
Had lunch at The Spotted Pig today. You can’t get in there at night without an endless wait, but in the daytime it’s airy, pleasant, relatively calm. People in this funky room are laid back, happy, chatting from one table to the next about what they are eating.
But everyone seems to be eating the same thing. Burgers, big ones, with Roquefort and huge piles of lacy fries. And even on this absurdly hot day, sheep’s milk ricotta gnudi with crumbs of brown butter and crisply fried sage leaves.
One bite and I instantly understood. They seemed to fly up off the plate and float into your mouth where they hovered a moment, like feathers, before evaporating. And then you were left with crisp shards of sage, a bright green flavor, and the memory of the cheese. They were so good you found yourself dreamily putting first one little puff into your mouth, and then another, until you looked down and found that the plate was empty.
Afterwards we had bowls of cherries on ice, and tiny cups of intense coffee.
A wonderful meal.
June 15, 2007
I just came up with this list of food books for NPR, to go along with an interview I did with Steve Inskeep. So I thought I might as well post it here as well.
The Language of Baklava, by Diana Abu-Jaber. I was talking to Diana the other day, and she said, “There’s something safe and wonderful about being raised by a strict father, but it has its drawbacks.” That’s pretty much what this memoir – about growing up partly in Jordan and always with food – is about.
Climbing the Mango Trees by Madhur Jaffrey. Madhur is an extraordinary cook with an amazing ability to recall – and recreate – the evocative flavors of the India she grew up in.
Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain. The original bad boy chef – and so much fun!
The Man Who Ate Everything by Jeffrey Steingarten. Before there was Bill Buford there was Steingarten. Few people are as erudite – and no one is as food-obsessed – as Jeffrey Steingarten, who will follow any food trail to literal absurdity.
The Tummy Trilogy by Calvin Trillin. Could be subtitled: Why life is more fun for people who like to eat.
The Apprentice, By Jacques Pepin. There is a reason why Jacques Pepin became one of our most celebrated French chefs. He’s a cook with a remarkably interesting mind.
Talk Talk by T.C. Boyle. A novel about identity theft that contains some of the most wonderful descriptions of cooking that I’ve ever read. And why not? Another Boyle book contains the great short story, Sorry Fugu.
Up in the Old Hotel by Joseph Mitchell. The ultimate writer’s writer, Mitchell is not usually thought of as a food writer. But so many of his stories are about markets, pubs and restaurants. And this book contains my all-time favorite food story, “All You Can Hold for Five Bucks.”
Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen by Laurie Colwin. You’ve never read Laurie Colwin? What a treat you have in store.
Between Meals by A.J. Liebling. Most famous quote: “The primary requisite for writing about food is a good appetite.” Probably our greatest food writer.
Hotel Splendid by Ludwig Bemelmans. An endlessly amusing behind-the-scenes look at a great hotel restaurant by the man who wrote the Madeline books. Bemelmans wrote from experience; he worked at The Ritz.
Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell. Contains a remarkably graphic, and completely unforgettable, behind-the-scenes look at restaurant kitchens.
Coming Soon:Fair Shares for All by John Haney. An extraordinarily affectionate book about growing up hungry in London’s East End.