This month, our Cookbook Club has been cooking through Kristen Miglore’s Genius Recipes. Member Julia Fabrin Jakobsen shared a photo of a perfect Genius cold-weather combo, Spicy Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, and casually mentioned: "Kind of funny that the grilled cheese recipe is by Gabrielle Hamilton, as I’m currently reading her autobiography!"
This passing comment prompted a lively larger-group discussion about the best food-related books we've all read this year. In case you're looking for a good read, we've narrowed down their favorites to 12 of the best from this year.
My Mother’s Kitchen by Peter Gethers is a funny and moving memoir about Peter’s mother, Judy Gethers, who was the daughter of the owner of New York’s famed Ratner’s restaurant. She was very good friends with several famous chefs. The book includes several recipes that are Judy’s favorites. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I laughed out loud and sobbed numerous times while riding the subway when I was reading this.
I have two favorites, both cultural explorations of the food of the south from slavery through to the civil rights movement, and today. One is The Potlikker Papers by John Edge, current head of the Southern Foodways Alliance and the other is The Cooking Gene by Michael Twitty, which is a much more personal account of how southern food and cooking helped form his character and who he is.
Fill us in on your favorite food-related reads in the comments, and if you'd like to get involved with the Cookbook Club, head here for details on how to participate and what books we’ll be covering in the new year.