Foodie Book Club: First Three Books

>> Monday, March 1, 2010

Good morning! Thanks for voting, everyone! The club is up to 40 members! And our first book won by only one vote. The other two front-runners were tied, so I'm simply choosing numbers two and three by alphabetical order.

The Nasty Bits: Collected Varietal Cuts, Usable Trim, Scraps, and Bones
by Anthony Bourdain

In this typically bold effort, Bourdain (Kitchen Confidential), like the fine chef he is, pulls together an entertaining feast from the detritus of his years of cooking and traveling. Arranged around the basic tastes: salty, sweet, sour, bitter and umami (a Japanese term for a taste the defies description), this scattershot collection of anecdotes puts Bourdain's brave palate, notorious sense of adventure and fine writing on display.

Read more about The Nasty Bits on Amazon or find a copy at your local library or book store.

A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table
by Molly Wizenberg

Wizenberg's debut shares the same basic format as her Orangette blog—favorite recipes interspersed with personal reflection—but constructed around a much tighter family narrative. Memories of her father, for example, begin with his cherished formula for potato salad and an attempt to recreate his French toast, but also include a variation on scrambled eggs that spurred a comforting moment as he was dying of cancer.

Read more about A Homemade Life on Amazon or find the book at your local library/book store for April.

The United States of Arugula: How We Became a Gourmet Nation
by David Kamp

Kamp details the development of fine dining in the U.S. and proves healthy, even exotic food movements are having an effect on our diet. He highlights the great divide between a population that relies on McDonald's and those who savor gourmet cooking. Historically, the rich always had high-end restaurants; the rest contented themselves with recipes in the ladies' sections of newspapers and magazines. But thanks to "the Big Three"—James Beard, Julia Child and Craig Claiborne—America had an eating revolution.

Read more about The United States of Arugula on Amazon or find the book at your local library/book store for May.

If you have questions about the club, check out our Foodie Book Club Details post. It'll tell ya when to post or email us, as well as other important stuff. Here's our growing list of members. If you're coming to us late in the game, you have until March 10th to sign up. After that, just shoot us an email at, and we'll take note that you're all in.

And if you'd like a button for your sidebar, just grab the one below!

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