Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Yummy Read

I've just finished a truly lovely, lyrical, dare I say delicious, novel. And even more special, it came to me in a somewhat roundabout way. I gave The School of Essential Ingredientsto a friend for her birthday after admiring the cover and thrilling over the gushing reviews. Last week I got an email from her, asking me if I'd read it and wondering if I'd like to, because she'd read it in a single sitting and LOVED it. How could I refuse? (Honestly I didn't even remember the name of the book until she told me). Despite her glowing review, I was a little wary. This is not my typical fare. Literary books tend to be a little deeper, and very often darker, than I like. My mixed-feelings about this book evaporated within the first five pages. It is written with such a delicate hand, full-to-bursting with evocative images and spot-on metaphors that I was instantly charmed.

It is about a girl who learned to cook while her mother was lost in books and how, all grown-up now, she enthusiastically teaches others. Not recipes or how-to's, just feeling and experiencing, adjusting to taste, doing what feels right. It is the story of seven strangers learning to cook and discovering that experiencing food in a new way fills the holes in their lives.

My friend told me that reading the book had made her want to cook something as soon as she was finished, and I couldn't imagine it having that effect on me. It has. Lately I've tried to get past my mini-phobia of dirty dishes piling up to do a little extra cooking. I ventured back the orchard and came home with a few more peaches and blackberries, a couple tomatoes, a handful of rosemary and a few sprigs of thyme. Since then I've make a peach cobbler, some homemade french fries seasoned with olive oil and rosemary, a chicken pot pie with fresh thyme, and homemade blackberry ice cream! Yay me!

Seriously though, I highly, highly recommend this book. I only wish the author had another novel ready for me to dive into.

Sidebar: If you're interested in winning a copy of my book, both Green Girl and Silver Strands are doing giveaways, so hop over there and get in on the action!

8 comments:

David Cranmer said...

Far from my usual fare but a good book is a good book and this one sounds intriguing.

Stacy said...

Sounds like a good book.

Be grateful I don't live in Texas, as I'd definitely invite myself over for dinner. ;)

Silver Strands said...

I love a good read, but really hate to have it end if there's no sequel!

Did you get my order for your book? Thanks for the autograph coming with it :)
oxooxx
Denalee

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I saw this book recently and was VERY tempted. Now it's official: I must get it.

Teenage Bride said...

Sounds great! I am open to be reading just about anything and I LOVE LOVE LOVE to cook (at least since I got married lol) I will be sure to put this on my summer reading list! thanks for sharing.

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

Yay for good books! I am definitely adding this to my very long to read list!

Alyssa Goodnight said...

You should give it a shot, David. Particularly if you're at all a foodie.

Stacy, this was just a particularly good week for me. We've been know to survive on chili for days... :)

I know what you mean, Denalee!

Kelly said...

Can I borrow the book? I want to read it! You know my excitement for food and I need to be inspired to cook more!