Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen (paperback)
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We’ll borrow here from some of Nach Waxman’s notes on the great Laurie Colwin:
Perhaps best known to most of the world as a highly accomplished writer of fiction, Laurie Colwin (1944-1992) was the author of five novels and three volumes of short stories. Recognized with a Guggenheim Fellowship and other awards, she was a vital presence in the New York literary scene until her death at the age of 48.
She did, however, leave behind two glowing non-fiction books about herself and her lifelong relationship with food and cooking. The first, Home Cooking, published by Knopf in 1988, consisted of 33 short pieces, many of them built around recipes. Ranging from “The Low-Tech Person’s Batterie de Cuisine,” “Bread Baking without Agony,” and “Alone in the Kitchen with an Eggplant,” to “Repulsive Dinners: a Memoir,” these irresistible essays are accounts of Colwin’s cooking experiences—both triumphs and ordeals. The recipes, sometimes more descriptive than set out as prescriptions, are embedded gently into the narratives.
Totally satisfying, often quite amusing, and crafted without a hint of self-conscious effort.