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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Memories of Love, Food, Travel...

Lately, my literary interests have led me into the world of memoirs-- typically of chefs, food writers, etc-- most likely due to my reality TV obsession. My last pick was a recomendation: Heat by Bill Buford. When I started reading, I thought it was going to be the result of a research project on Mario Batali, however I ended up being pleasantly surprised. The book not only traced the success of Batali through his mentors, but ended up taking me on a much enjoyed culinary trip through small-town Italy. Buford essentially retraces Mario's learning process by seeking out and working alongside all those people who made him into the Iron Chef master he is today. The book describes, in-depth, secrets to making the perfect pasta right down to choosing the perfect egg, conquering both beef and pork, learning how to read cook temps on meat through merely your sense of touch and smell, all the way down to dicing cucumber properly, without an inch of it going to waste. The book was a guilty pleasure for me, giving me an insiders look into the part of culture I love the most (food) from the culture I secretly favour (Italian).

Next I plan to replace my starchy cravings with sugar dreams with The Sweet Life in Paris by David Lebowitz. Ahhh Paris...another city that holds a special place in both my foodie and romantic heart. Then I plan to take on the muli-volumed Oishinbo, the manga of Japanese cuisine...

I will discover the world, one memoir at a time.

PS--maybe I'm just a little too Ital-proud, but I totally believe there had to be some truth in the Caterina di Medici legend...did France's culinary success come through their young Italy queen? You decide...



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