My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life by Ruth Reichl
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I don't think I've ever read a cookbook before, though this is more of a cooking journal than a cookbook. After Ruth Reichl's job as editor of Gourmet magazine came to an abrupt end with its folding, she spent the next year or so, cooking at home and keeping notes about what she was thinking and feeling at the time. She's compiled her notes and journal into a record of that grieving time and this book is the result.
I loved the photographs in the book, and the excerpts from her notes about the season. With each recipe she provides the context for when and why she chose to cook it. While I doubt I'll prepare more than a couple of them, almost all of them made me want to try them. She stresses the importance of using fresh ingredients, from local sources as much as possible, and using food in its season. It's hard for a lot of us, budgets may not allow us to purchase some ingredients, and for many of us, where we live dictates what's available. I'd love to frequent my local butcher or fishmonger, but the only "butchers" where I live are in the grocery store where the meat comes prepackaged. But that's beside the point of this book. I will admit that my "staples" list closely resembles hers. I don't regularly keep heavy cream and sour cream in the fridge, and I may only have 3 kinds of vinegar and canola, olive, and peanut oil on hand, but I was surprised that I had so many of the same things on hand.
This is a book to savor, pun intended.
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