I have never been to San Francisco, but I know that when I do go, I will be visiting Omnivore Books. I am on their mailing list if only so I can see the various events and authors they have at the shop. This article tells you a little about the shop and also recommends five books you should have in your kitchen.
The James Beard Book, Broadcast and Journalism awards were held last week. This essay won for James Beard Foundation MFK Distinguished Writing.
I devoured Kitchens of the Great Midwest last week. I was on a few planes and trains as I traveled to Denmark to present some of my research at the Child and Teen Consumption Conference. This is a fantastic book to have in all that dead time in airports and on train platforms. I loved Eva, her chilli peppers and her quest for exceptional food. I found the way the narrative is constructed interesting – how it is told from different points of view. I did think the loose ends were slightly frustrating though.
(We also had rather spectacular food throughout the conference but particularly at the conference dinner. We ate at Fusion restaurant. The meal was three courses with unusually combined ingredients – monkfish with bakchoi; steak with teriyaki; sorrel sorbet with rhubarb compote and tonka bean jelly.) (And yes, as you can see from the photograph below, my phone is still broken. Le sigh.)
This article on Slate – talking about the gap between what we cook and what we talk about cooking. As the writer notes, “most people are far more concerned with convenience and affordability than authenticity or novelty”. (In a side note, there is a great scene in Kitchens of the Great Midwest, that pokes fun at ‘foodie’#eatclean culture, with everyone obsessed with making baked goods from avocado, hormone-free everything, nothing with gluten).
I’ve started reading Night Waking by Sarah Moss. I loved her Names for the Sea: Strangers in Iceland (which is the story of taking her family to Iceland for a year so she can teach). This is a fictional novel (about a family where both parents are academics and they have moved to a far flung island so the one can count puffins and the other must balance childcare with book writing) but is captivating and I have not been able to put it down. Part of it reminds me of Secrets of the Sea House.