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What’s cooking? Best in food writing

Temperatures are moderating, farmers markets are reopening, and everyone is becoming more active. It’s a great time to perk up your dinner table and reconnect with the goodness of real food. Discover the pleasures of cheese, the joys of eating, and the hardships of being a woman chef.

Immortal Milk

Immortal Milk: Adventures in Cheese
By Eric LeMay

Eric LeMay has had a love affair with cheese, from the fanciest Stilton to the most common Cheddar. In Immortal Milk, recently out in paperback, LeMay shares his mission to learn about all things cheese, including the origins of the word cheesy. Once relegated to Europe or the grocery store dairy case, artisan cheeses are now readily available at even the smallest farmer’s markets. These local delights capture the character of the environment and the personality of the maker. LeMay’s collection of essays is a fun and fascinating look at almost everything cheese, such as how it’s made and its connections to literature. The book concludes with write-ups of the author’s favorite varieties from around the world.


Relish: My Life in the Kitchen
By Lucy Knisley

Lucy Knisley’s childhood was a food lover’s dream. From a young age, she spent time in the kitchens of New York City restaurants, helping out at farmers markets, and eating beautifully prepared food made by her chef/caterer mother. In addition, she had opportunities to travel the world, eating in fine dining establishments and from street vendors alike. Relish, Knisley’s second graphic memoir, is a delight to read, and her drawings are expressive and fun. Because Knisley is equally at home eating berries fresh out of the garden, sitting down for a $250 dinner in Chicago, and grabbing a fast-food burger and fries, her memoir is down to earth. You’ll love the charming artwork and wonderful stories and may even be tempted by one of Knisley’s recipes.

Skirt Steak: Women Chefs on Standing the Heat and Staying in the Kitchen
Skirt SteakBy Charlotte Druckman

So you think you might want to be a professional chef? Before you don your kitchen whites, sit down with Charlotte Druckman’s Skirt Steak and learn the truth about what it takes to survive as woman chef in America. Although she offers her own observations and opinions, Druckman more often steps back to let more than 70 professionals speak for themselves, revealing the brutal physical and psychological conditions of working behind the scenes in a restaurant kitchen. These women, some you’ve heard of and many you haven’t, fight sexism and stereotypes every bit as hard as they fight for perfection and critical acclaim and respect. This is an eye-opening read for every food lover.

More reading

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