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The Daily Meal Hall of Fame: M.F.K. Fisher

The Daily Meal Hall of Fame: M.F.K. Fisher


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With the help of The Daily Meal Council, we have selected 10 key figures in the history of food to honor this year in our Hall of Fame. Here, North Carolina-based Council member Kelly Alexander, an author, radio commentator, and food writing teacher, explains why author M.F.K. Fisher belongs on the roster.

The ideal circumstances for a writerly childhood — one in which the minor has no choice but to grow into a woman or man of letters — is disputed among literary types, but there are a few commonalities upon which we can draw: The kid must be highly intelligent (so much so, he or she might argue, that a traditional classroom setting is boring), an outsider or outcast in some way (perhaps due to the usual suspects of race, class, religion, gender, or some combination thereof), and the bearer of the kind of precocious curiosity that leads to the label “troublemaker.” Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher (1908–1992), the great American food essayist, met all three conditions.

She happened to come from a family of writers, too. Born to a fourth-generation newspaperman, Rex Kennedy, she relocated with her family, as a small child, from her birthplace of Albion, Michigan, to Whittier, California, where her father had purchased The Whittier News. Whittier was a predominantly Quaker town and the Kennedys were Episcopalians, a difference that imprinted on Mary Frances' childhood the sense of being on the outside looking in: “Episcopalians were the third world in Whittier," she said in an interview shortly before her death. “I wrote a book about my childhood, and I wanted to call it ‘Child of an Inner Ghetto.'” The book, published in 1970, is instead called Among Friends.

Describing herself as a “haughty child” and an insatiable reader in a house full of books and visiting newspaper writers, she also had a family cook who gave her cooking lessons. What she didn’t have was a lot of enthusiasm for school. She was a four-time college dropout, content to read and write but not to do much of anything else. While enrolled at her last school, UCLA, she fell in love with a brilliant loner, a doctoral student in literature named Alfred Fisher. They moved to Dijon, France, in 1929 for his studies.

Dijon was where Fisher's love for writing and her engagement with food cohered. Her real work as an essayist began. She began writing pieces that used food as a metaphor for all of the important themes in life, including love and loss. Of the decision to take food as her subject, she wrote in her book The Gastronomical Me, published in 1943: “People ask me: ‘Why do you write about food, and eating and drinking? Why don't you write about the struggle for power and security, and about love, the way others do?’ They ask it accusingly, as if I were somehow gross, unfaithful to the honor of my craft. The easiest answer is to say that, like most humans, I am hungry. But there is more than that. It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it.”

The quote is a choice example of the voice Mary Frances adopted for herself, one with an unmistakable air of authority, a certain impatience and orneriness, and an intense desire to evoke the power of a good meal or a strong taste boldly enjoyed. She believed that “[A]lmost every person has something secret he likes to eat,” (in Serve it Forth, 1937); described the “dreadful but exciting life” an oyster leads (in Consider the Oyster, 1941); and dispensed the advice that should one find a wolf at one’s door, the best course of action is to invite him in and have him for dinner (in How to Cook a Wolf, 1942).

In a career that spanned more than 60 years, she managed to further the form of what we today consider “food writing," taking it from little more than a note accompanying a recipe about the formula’s provenance to a work of considerable literary charm and passionate opinion. She did so in some 27 books, including novels, collections of her famous essays, and countless articles for publications including the New Yorker and Vogue.

Fisher was no less colorful in her personal life than she was on the page. A great beauty photographed by Man Ray, she said of herself, “I wasn’t so pretty that I didn’t have to do something else.” Her marriage to Fisher, though it gave her a ticket to Europe and an entrée into the world of French cuisine, left her cold. She left him after two years for the love of her life: the painter Dillwyn Parrish, 14 years her senior, a cousin of the artist Maxfield Parrish and a friend of Mary Cassatt. They lived in Switzerland and in a cabin in the San Jacinto mountains of California, where, by all accounts, they shared a marvelously passionate relationship. But Parrish was plagued with ill health due to his heavy smoking and from having suffered from severe malnutrition during World War I. At some point in their seven-year marriage he contracted the dreadful Buerger’s disease, a progressive inflammatory condition of the circulatory system that resulted in the loss of a leg, constant pain, and the threat of further limb amputations. Parrish committed suicide in 1941, when he was 47. Fisher’s memoir of their relationship, Stay Me, Oh Comfort Me: Journals and Stories 1933–1941, contains some of her most soulful, least food-inspired writing.“I do not know of anyone in the United States today who writes better prose,” said the poet W.H. Auden in 1963.

In 1944 she married her third husband, the New York-based publisher Donald Friede, with whom she had two daughters. His publishing world connections gave her a privileged status with periodicals, including the Atlantic Monthly, Town & Country, and Gourmet. At this point in her career, Fisher was somewhat of a celebrity; a writer worth knowing about. “I do not know of anyone in the United States today who writes better prose,” said the poet W.H. Auden in 1963.

Mary Frances said she eventually “had to leave” Friede because he didn’t want children. She left New York in the process, moving to California with her daughters to take care of her ill parents. She spent the rest of her life traveling between France, Switzerland, and California, working and writing, most notably producing a translation of Jean Anthelme Brilliat-Savarin’s The Physiology of Taste. She also produced scores of magazine articles and a book on French provincial cooking that was part of the famous Time-Life Foods of the World series.

From 1970 until her death in 1992, Fisher lived on the estate of the Glen Ellen winery in Santa Helena, California, in a home built especially for her by the winery’s owner, her friend and ardent fan, the architect David Bouverie. Her papers are archived at the Schlesinger Library of Harvard University, alongside the world’s largest cookbook collection, which would no doubt please her. As she wrote in Serve it Forth, “Central heating, French rubber goods, and cookbooks are three amazing proofs of man's ingenuity in transforming necessity into art, and, of these, cookbooks are perhaps most lastingly delightful.”

Find The Daily Meal Hall of Fame here.


Les Dames d’Escoffier International Founder Dies at 96

Carol Brock, food journalist, philanthropist, and founder of Les Dames d’Escoffier International has died. She was 96.

During her seven-decade culinary career, Brock championed women in food, beverage, and hospitality industries. She founded LDEI’s inaugural New York City chapter in 1976. Under her leadership LDEI has formed 45 chapters with over 2,400 members worldwide.

“At her very heart, Carol was a visionary – a woman with fierce determination, passion, and motivation,” said Bev Shaffer, LDEI president, in a statement. “As founder of Les Dames d’Escoffier International, she wasn’t satisfied with the opportunities others thought were 'good enough' for a professional woman and wasn’t afraid to ask 'what if?' Her legacy will inspire us to dream more, learn more, and become more…all while being enveloped in the memory of her ever-present smile.”

Brock’s food career began in 1944 when she worked as an assistant food editor at Good Housekeeping magazine where she developed recipes and practiced food photography. She was also a contributing editor on several Good Housekeeping cookbooks and co-authored “The Good Housekeeping Party Book.” Later, she became the food editor of Parents Magazine.

In 1971, Brock worked as a food reporter for the New York Daily News. After she retired from the Daily News she contributed as a restaurant critic for the Times Ledger in Queens, N.Y. She also served as Culinary Arts Coordinator for the Great Neck Adult Education Programming for 25 years.

She received a charter from the New York Chapter of Les Amis d’Escoffier in 1973. Her intent was to garner visibility and elevate women in the culinary space. Brock said, “We didn’t want a dining society. We wanted to show what women could do. We wanted to raise the Pyrex ceiling.”

Brock holds the title of Grande Dame, an honor awarded by LDEI for exceptional philanthropic and education contributions to the culinary world. Recipients include M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, Marcella Hazan, Alice Waters – among others.

In remembrance of Carol Brock's legacy, donations can be made to LDEI's Brock Circle, Brock's namesake fund enabling LDEI to bring more opportunities to serve its members and communities through education and improvement in the food, beverage, and hospitality industries.


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Knowing they need each other to further their careers, two co-hosts of a travel show set in Hawaii clash over their production ideas, but soon realize they balance each other, on and off the screen. Pascale Hutton, Kavan Smith.

Matt's passion transforms his bread from bland to extraordinary. When his bread loses its magic, the island locals panic and turn to Annie, Matt's childhood friend and true love for help. Stars Eloise Mumford, Brant Daugherty.

Event planner Victoria can't wait to attend, and plan, her best friend's Paris wedding. But when she finds out that her ex is bringing a date, she reconnects with her French childhood pen pal. Stars Mallory Jansen, Joshua Sasse.

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John T. Edge

Georgia-born author/editor John T. Edge's influential writing about the South's rich and diverse food culture has reached a best-selling audience while fostering a new and deeper understanding of the region's history.

Born in Clinton, Georgia, Edge went to school in nearby Macon, where he graduated from Tattnall Square Academy in 1980. He attended the University of Georgia in the mid-1980s, but left without a degree. Edge later completed his undergraduate work at the University of Mississippi and earned a graduate degree there in Southern Studies (MA, 2002). In 2012 Edge earned an MFA in creative writing from Goucher College in Maryland.

Edge worked in Atlanta in sales and marketing for several years, then in 1995 he abandoned a management consulting job to move to Oxford, Mississippi. Intending to study race relations at Ole Miss, Edge became especially attracted to work being done by historians and oral history workers at The Center for Study of Southern Culture (CSSC).

"I was embarrassed deeply and profoundly to be from the South. And I loved my place and was proud as could be of some of the cultural creations of the South and the people I knew.And I showed up [to work at the Center] to try to resolve those two things," Edge told a Foodways Alliance interviewer in 2010.

Just before he moved to Mississippi, Edge and a couple friends had published what would be his first effort at food writing. A small guide to eating and drinking in Atlanta, Belly of Atlanta: A Homegrown Guide to the Good Places concentrated upon on hangouts with local flavor, and Edge drove back to Atlanta to sell the guidebook to Atlanta's Olympic visitors in the summer of 1996.

At Ole Miss, Edge began to study intersections between southern history and southern food. For his thesis, Edge wrote about a 1931 debate in the Atlanta Constitution editorial pages, a "food fight" that erupted when editor Julian Harris and Louisiana's governor Huey Long had different opinions about whether to dunk, or to crumble, cornbread in potlikker. In the midst of his graduate studies, Edge organized the first Southern Foodways Symposium at the CSSC in 1998, and soon afterward the Southern Foodways Alliance ("dedicated to the documentation and celebration of the diverse food cultures of the American South") was founded, with Edge as its director.

Since then he has written or edited more than a dozen books, including the foodways volume of the New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture. Edge is series editor of Southern Foodways Alliance Studies in Culture, People, and Place, published by the University of Georgia Press.

A contributing editor at Garden & Gun, Edge has also been a recurring columnist for the Oxford American, and for three years he wrote the monthly &ldquoUnited Taste&rdquo column for the New York Times. He has authored or co-authored guidebooks on New Orleans, Georgia and the "deep South," and his magazine and newspaper work has been featured in eleven editions of the Best Food Writing compilation. He has won three James Beard Foundation awards, and in 2012, the Foundation awarded Edge the M.F .K. Fisher Distinguished Writing Award.

Edge has served as culinary curator for the weekend edition of NPR&rsquos All Things Considered, and he has been featured on dozens of television shows from CBS Sunday Morning to Iron Chef. Edge is also the host of the television show "TrueSouth," which airs on ESPN and the SEC Network. Since 2015, Edge has worked with the University of Georgia's MFA Program in Narrative Media Writing.

Edge lives in Oxford, Mississippi, with his wife, Blair Hobbs, a teacher, writer, and painter. They have one son, Jess.

Bibliography

The following books by John T. Edge are held by the Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library:

Belly of Atlanta. With Nelson D. Ross and Boyd Baker. Atlanta, Ga. : Intown Publishers, 1996

A Gracious Plenty: Recipes and recollections from the American South. New York: Putnam, 1999.

Southern Belly: The Ultimate Food Lover's Guide to the South. Athens, GA: Hill Street Press, 2000.

Georgia. Oakland, CA: Compass American Guides, 2000.

Georgia. [2 nd ed.] Oakland, CA: Compass American Guides, 2001.

Mrs. Wilkes' Boardinghouse Cookbook: Recipes and Recollections from Her Savannah Table. Berkeley, CA: Ten Speed Press, 2001.

Georgia. [3r d ed.] Oakland, CA: Compass American Guides, 2006.

The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture: Foodways (Editor). Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, 2007.

The Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook. Edge, John T. and Roahen, Sara, editors. UGA Press, 2010.

Southern Belly: The Ultimate Food Lovers Companion to the American South. 2012.

The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South. Penguin Press, 2017.

The Larder : food studies methods from the American South. / edited by John T. Edge, Elizabeth S. D. Engelhardt, and Ted Ownby.

The Truck Food Cookbook: 150 Recipes and Ramblings from America's Best Restaurants on Wheels. New York: Workman, 2012.


3 Chicago cookbook authors among finalists for culinary award

Three cookbooks by Chicagoans are among the finalists for a prestigious culinary award from the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

"Prep School," a book compiling James P. DeWan's cooking method and technique columns that have appeared in Good Eating the past eight years, is a finalist in the compilations category. "The Art of French Pastry" by Jacquy Pfeiffer, who is dean of student affairs at the renowned French Pastry School in Chicago, was nominated in the baking category. And "The Sardinian Cookbook: The Cooking and Culture of a Mediterranean Island" by Viktorija Todorovska was recognized in culinary travel.

The IACP is a group of chefs, restaurateurs, writers and other professionals from the food and beverage world. The association's cookbook awards, which were announced Tuesday, are well-regarded as a stamp of quality and innovation.

The cookbook award winners, along with those for food journalism and digital media, will be announced March 15 at the association's annual conference, which will be held in Chicago.

DeWan, whose column appears monthly in Good Eating, is a culinary instructor at Kendall College. Pfeiffer is co-founder of the French Pastry School and an instructor there. Todorovska is a food and wine consultant (http://www.olivacooking.com/) and cookbook author.

The following is a partial list of the cookbook award finalists. For a complete list of award finalists, click here.


2021 Arkansas Food Hall of Fame Finalists (by category)

Arkansas Food Hall of Fame
AQ Chicken – Springdale
Colonial Steak House – Pine Bluff
Dairy King – Portia
Dixie Pig – Blytheville
Feltner’s Whatta-Burger – Russellville
Herman’s Ribhouse – Fayetteville
K Hall & Sons Produce – Little Rock
Kream Kastle – Blytheville
Monte Ne Inn – Rogers
Ohio Club – Hot Springs
Neal’s Cafe – Springdale
Star of India – Little Rock
Trio’s Restaurant – Little Rock

Proprietor of the Year
Deluca’s Pizzeria – Hot Springs
The Hive – Bentonville
Pine Bluff Country Club – Pine Bluff
Star of India – Little Rock
Trio’s Restaurant – Little Rock

Food-Themed Events
Arkansas Cornbread Festival – Little Rock
Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival – Warren
Magnolia Blossom Festival & World Championship Steak Cook-Off – Magnolia
Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church Annual Spaghetti Dinner – Lake Village
Tontitown Grape Festival – Tontitown
World Championship Duck Gumbo Cookoff – Stuttgart

Gone But Not Forgotten
Browning’s Mexican Grill – Little Rock
Dairy Hollow House – Eureka Springs
Habib’s Cafe and Delicatessen – Helena
Roy Fisher’s Steak House – North Little Rock
Uncle John’s – Crawfordsville

People’s Choice Award
The People’s Choice Award is given to the restaurant that received the most nominations. Click here to see all the nominees.


Lewis acquired her cooking skills and love of freshness and seasonality growing up in Freetown, where such things were part of life. She learned most of her cooking from her Aunt Jenny. They used a wood-fired stove for all their cooking and didn’t have measuring spoons or scales, so instead, they used coins, piling baking powder on pennies, salt on dimes, and baking soda on nickels. Lewis is said to have been able to tell when a cake was done just by listening to the sound it was making.

Lewis left Freetown at age 16 after her father died. First, she moved to Washington, D.C., and eventually to New York City. Her first jobs in New York City included ironing in a laundromat and as an employee of the Daily Worker, a newspaper. She was also involved in political demonstrations and campaigned for President Franklin D. Roosevelt.


Buy some good books, do a great deed

Most of us, when we get touched by something we’ve read, reflect on it briefly and then move on, swept along by the tidal pull of our daily lives. Not Luisa Weiss not this time.

Weiss, proprietor of the popular Wednesday Chef blog and author of the new cookbook “My Berlin Kitchen,” was so moved by a recent newspaper series about a homeless family living in New York City that she decided to do something about it.

She is auctioning off a sizable chunk of her cookbook collection, with the proceeds going to the Invisible Child Fund set up by the Legal Aid Society of New York for the benefit of homeless children.

And rather than going through EBay or another online auction house, she’s running it herself. To bid, you simply leave a comment on her blog along with your name.

Among the books offered are some real finds — a copy of dessert chef Claudia Fleming’s cult book “The Last Course” is at $225 (still less than it’s pulling on the used-book market). That’s also the current price for what is billed as a “good, clean, unused condition” copy of the Time-Life Foods of the World book on Provincial France, written by M.F.K. Fisher.

A signed copy of Thomas Keller’s “Ad Hoc at Home” is $100. Deb Perelman, the popular blogger and author of “The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook” says she will match the sales price of her book, which is now standing at $100.

Not everything is so pricey — or collectible. There are some books going for as little as $15 to $20.

“I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the family — and the thousands like it” since reading the series, Weiss writes. “When I take a shower alone and unmolested, when I watch [her son] Hugo eating his dinner that I have no trouble putting on the table, when I lie back in my clean, quiet bed at night to read, I think about all these silly little things that make up my everyday life and how completely out of reach they are for a girl, and a family, that has simply had the bad luck to be born into different circumstances than I have.”


Laurie Colwin: A Confidante in the Kitchen

Emily Gould stood in an Upper West Side kitchen on a Saturday evening and gazed into a crumb-encrusted pan full of creamed spinach. “It kind of suffered on the subway a little bit,” she said.

It was a moment that might have appeared in an essay by the food writer Laurie Colwin, whose recipes were on the menu that night. Ms. Gould is a writer whose first novel will come out this summer, and the apartment belongs to her friend Sadie Stein, a contributing editor for The Paris Review. Both hang out with a young, literary, food-obsessed crowd, and they had met up with two friends to eat baked mustard chicken and that creamed spinach, debating and paying tribute to a writer whose work overflows with stove-centered gatherings just like this one.

Ms. Colwin was an author, self-described “refined slob” and passionate, idiosyncratic home cook who died in 1992, when the members of this salon were still in grade school. During her life, she gained a reputation first and foremost as a novelist and a composer of delicately calibrated short stories. But in the years since her death, at the age of 48, her following has only grown, and her highly personal food writing, collected in the books “Home Cooking” and “More Home Cooking,” has attracted a new, cultishly devoted generation of readers. Her musings, anecdotes and quirkily imprecise, not-altogether-reliable recipes show up with regularity on food blogs. Which only makes sense, because even though Ms. Colwin expressed wariness about technology and cranked out her essays (most of them for Gourmet magazine) on a mint-green Hermes Rocket typewriter, there is something about her voice, conveyed in conversational prose, that comes across as a harbinger of the blog boom that would follow.

“I think of her as kind of a proto-blogger,” said Mitchell Davis, executive vice president of the James Beard Foundation, which in 2012 inducted Ms. Colwin into its cookbook hall of fame. “I would say she’s a transitional figure between M. F. K. Fisher and Julie Powell.”

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Ruth Reichl, the writer, editor and former New York Times restaurant critic, said: “You want to be in the kitchen with her — that is her secret. She is the best friend we all want. She never talks down to you.”

In turn, friendships have formed around her work. Ms. Stein, 32, first picked up “Home Cooking” when she was 9 or 10 her parents had it around the house in Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y. “I quietly commandeered the book for my own use,” Ms. Stein recalled. Years later, a shared passion for the Colwinesque view of food and life brought her together for those dinners with Ms. Gould Ruth Curry, who works in publishing and Lukas Volger, a cookbook author and entrepreneur.

Acolytes like Ms. Stein and Ms. Gould don’t merely read Laurie Colwin. They revisit her passages over and over again, and develop a guardian-angel-style attachment to her. When Ms. Reichl arrived at Gourmet as editor in chief, in 1999, she discovered in her office a cache of about 400 letters from mourning fans who had written to the magazine after Ms. Colwin’s death. Ms. Reichl’s “very first act” as editor, she said, was to have the letters messengered over to Colwin’s husband, Juris Jurjevics, a founder of the Soho Press publishing company who lives these days in Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Most professional food writers can only dream of connecting with an audience in that way. “When I first went to Gourmet, every writer that came in said that he or she wanted to be the next Laurie Colwin,” Ms. Reichl said.

To Ms. Colwin’s partisans, her essays stand out as an antidote to glowy, glossy magazine photos in which carefree, beautiful people savor a spread of gastronomic wonder around picnic tables on some farm in Umbria, with shafts of Spielbergian sunlight illuminating the scene. By contrast, Ms. Colwin’s world is one of hangover cures, dinner parties gone awry, an apartment so minuscule that its inhabitant has to clean dishes in the bathtub, and the appeal of simple, unstylish grub like boiled beef, black beans, lentil soup and potato salad.

“She’s like the anti-Martha Stewart,” Ms. Reichl said. “It’s not about perfection.”

It would be easy to describe Ms. Colwin’s recipes as American comfort food, but that categorization doesn’t get at their essence. They’re more like an eccentric form of autobiography. As you approach them, Ms. Stein said, “you have to know her tastes are weird.”

Among those who did know her, Ms. Colwin was a catalytic force. Vibrant and vigilantly observant, she drove fast, despised elevators, collected colanders, specialized in spot-on mimicry and had what might be called a Proustian enthusiasm for domestic splendor.

What to Cook This Weekend

Sam Sifton has menu suggestions for the weekend. There are thousands of ideas for what to cook waiting for you on New York Times Cooking.

    • In this slow-cooker recipe for shrimp in purgatory, the spicy red pepper and tomato sauce develops its deep flavors over hours.
    • Deploy some store-bought green chutney in this quick, saucy green masala chicken. could be good for dinner, and some blueberry muffins for breakfast.
    • For dessert, watermelon granita? Or a poundcake with macerated strawberries and whipped cream?
    • And for Memorial Day itself? You know we have many, many recipes for that.

    “She was a great cook, but the fiascos were kind of fabulous,” Mr. Jurjevics recalled. “She cooked haggis once that was like the advertisement for ‘Alien,’ with the cracked egg.”

    She held strong opinions — about crockery, English food, romantic protocol, the lovers of her friends — and she didn’t hesitate to express them. “She did not approve of writers who were self-dramatizing,” said Scott Spencer, a novelist and friend of Ms. Colwin’s. “And she did not approve of difficult, inhospitable, challenging, overly fancy kinds of food. It was a culinary philosophy that may have been born of necessity, since her fridge was the size of a suitcase and her stove had four small burners and a balky oven — and the oven was mainly used for storage.”

    When Mr. Spencer met her, Ms. Colwin lived alone on Bethune Street, in the West Village, in an apartment that became known, in her essays, as the Lilliputian place where she explored the gastronomy of the hot plate. Somehow she gave parties, “perching us here and there throughout her room as if we were pieces of human scrimshaw with which she decorated her cozy quarters,” Mr. Spencer recalled in an email.

    Her friend Willard Spiegelman, now a professor of English at Southern Methodist University, recalled her parties as feeling “almost entirely improvisatory,” with Ms. Colwin dashing out at the last minute to find some flowers, watercress, a chicken. “Laurie’s primary interest was never in food per se,” he said. “It was food as a way of gathering people together.”

    Later on, Ms. Colwin and Mr. Jurjevics moved into an apartment on West 20th Street. (They married in 1983.) “She was not somebody who went out a great deal,” recalled her friend Alice Quinn, now the executive director of the Poetry Society of America. “But she loved, loved, loved having people over to her home.” The food she served was “always very simple,” Ms. Quinn said. Guests might have found flank steak, watercress salad, chocolate cake.

    That lack of pretension continues to endear her to readers. (Open Road Integrated Media recently signed a deal to release all of her works as e-books.) As Nozlee Samadzadeh put it: “You can’t be a snob when you’re cooking on a hot plate. But you can eat very well.”

    Ms. Samadzadeh, a 26-year-old programmer and editor behind a blog called Needs More Salt, encountered Ms. Colwin after falling in love with a recipe for tomato-and-corn pie that was published on the blog Smitten Kitchen. (Deb Perelman, the creator of Smitten Kitchen, said that Ms. Colwin’s work is “so relatable that you feel like it could have been written five minutes ago.”) Before long, Ms. Samadzadeh found herself gorging on Ms. Colwin’s books, trying out the scattershot recipes and silently asking herself a question at one life juncture after another: “What would Laurie Colwin do?”

    Rosa Jurjevics asks herself the same question. Now nearing 30, Ms. Colwin’s daughter, also a writer, rents an apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant where she holds onto her mother’s favorite French mug, serving bowls, photos, recipe binders.

    Ms. Jurjevics was only 8 when her mother died, overnight, of a heart attack. For fans of Ms. Colwin’s essays, she is a pivotal figure: the girl who made “spider webs with the fancy chicken-trussing strings, which I do remember doing,” she said. She was there to witness the process of her mother’s experiment with the legendary “black cake,” a Caribbean dessert whose ingredients steep in their own fruit-dense flavors for months.

    In some ways, Ms. Colwin prefigured a lot of what the food world is obsessed with now: organic eggs, broccoli rabe, beets and homemade bread, yogurt and jam. “She was so ahead of her time with the organic stuff,” Ms. Jurjevics said. “That was so hard growing up, I’ve got to say. I was the kid with the weird lunch.”

    On the other hand, the surge in food media might have befuddled her. “I wonder what she would have made of so many things,” Ms. Jurjevics mused. “Would she have a computer? Would she email people? She was so particular about everything. Would she blog? I wonder, would she compulsively Google herself?”

    Ms. Jurjevics can’t always relate to the predominantly heterosexual, comfortably upper-middle-class demimonde captured in her mother’s fiction, but she picks up her mother’s voice, her phrasing, her opinions, her way of looking at the world, on every page of “Home Cooking” and “More Home Cooking.”

    She has gone back to those books countless times. The novels, she said, “may be wonderful, but they’re not what I’m looking for. I just want more of her.”


    7 Vintage Cookbooks Worth the Thrift Store Hunt

    This is the first African-American cookbook published in America, and because it was published well over 100 years ago, it&rsquos public domain&mdashmeaning you can find a digital version for free online. However, because of the treasure that it is, finding an old printed copy makes for a beautiful addition to a cookbook collection and a wonderful resources that you can cook from without your computer or smartphone. You can find recently printed copies at Amazon.

    This collection is the epitome of old Southern recipes, making it a fantastic tool for any home cook venturing into the world of old Southern breads, pickles, and preserves. There are recipes for various entrees as well, but we recommend taking special note of the pickling section. Fisher&rsquos recipe for Chow Chow is old school but remarkable, simply flavoring the relish with turmeric, onion, black pepper, and cayenne. Cut her recipe in half unless you want a gallon of chow chow, and be thankful you&rsquore not cooking over &ldquoa slow fire&rdquo that requires tending to. You can simply leave the chow chow to gently simmer on your stove throughout the day.


    Watch the video: . Fisher: Poet of the Appetites. The New School (July 2022).


Comments:

  1. Davion

    Wonderful, as an alternative?

  2. Mikagul

    oh ... how lovely ...

  3. Zoloktilar

    The matchless answer ;)

  4. Northclyf

    Sorry, the topic mix. Removed



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