News and Notes
This is my wife's favorite cookbook and so I'm going out on a limb by attempting to do it justice in a nugget. That said, I can vouch for these things: First, as a novelist and story writer, Laurie Colwin makes these essays a true pleasure to inhabit. The author herself is a compelling main character -- observant, opinionated, and wickedly funny. Second, the recipes are delicious. There aren't all that many, just one or two are featured within each short essay (most appeared as columns in Gourmet). Yam Cakes with Hot Pepper and Fermented Black Beans are a particular favorite. Finally, Colwin's own favorite cookbooks are a great foundation for any kitchen library. She frequently mentions the cooks that she admires: Jane Grigson, Edna Lewis, Margaret Costa, Elizabeth David, and others. Even if your cookbook shelf is full, make some room for Laurie Colwin, who sadly only produced two collections of food writing before her death.