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Lobster Rolls And Blueberry Pie: Three Generations of Recipes and Stories from Summers on the Coast of Maine [Paperback]

Rebecca Charles
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 16 2006

From the celebrated chef and owner of New York City's Pearl Oyster Bar comes Lobster Rolls & Blueberry Pie, which transports readers to the Maine seashore of the past, where summer vacations stretch out forever during long, golden days and food is the stuff from which memories are made.

The story begins with Rebecca Charles's grandmother, Pearle Goldsmith, a Metropolitan Opera singer, who began a love affair with the coast of Maine. She passed down her passion for Maine and its food to her daughter, Eleanor, and granddaughter, Rebecca, whose Maine cuisine has New Yorkers waiting in line for hours at Pearl Oyster Bar.

Lobster Rolls & Blueberry Pie is a warm and wonderful book, filled with more than seventy delicious recipes, beautiful, nostalgic photos, and moving family stories.


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Product Details


Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Half seafood cookbook and half family history, this volume's greatest strength is in the recipes for over 70 dishes that define New England summers-corn on the cob, salt-crusted shrimp, and lots of lobster-reproduced here in honor of Charles's family's summertime trips to Maine. Charles, owner and head chef of the widely hailed Pearl Oyster Bar in Manhattan, offers her hard-drinking, quick-learning adventures in the restaurant business in the memoir portion of the book, and though they will be nothing new to Kitchen Confidential fans, they make for a piquant prelude to her recipes. The book gets a little bogged down, however, in the chapters that detail early family trips to Maine. Although Charles's desire to tell her family's story is heartfelt, she often leaves out important details, such as dates and introductions to the characters, that would make the narrative easier to follow. The story alternates from intriguing family explorations (how did the author's family locate the one hotel in the Kennebunk region of Maine that accepted Jews in the 1920's?) to textbook historical notes that don't quite mesh with the personal tone. Readers will wonder, too, about such asides as when she mentions her one-time estrangement from both parents ("I discovered my father's death in the late 1980s quite by accident"). Still, when the focus is on the food that Charles loves, the book is an accessible and authoritative guide to seafood preparation, as Charles offers not only divine recipes, from Pearl Oyster Bar Cocktail Sauce to Blueberry Crumble Pie, but tips on selecting (never buy wet scallops), cleaning (leverage is the key to shucking oysters) and preparing (don't marinate fish much more than 30 minutes) all types of seafood. B&w and color photos.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

“Deliciously entertaining. A novel with recipes.” (USA Weekend)

“Will remind you of the best summers you ever had.” (O, The Oprah Magazine)

“I remember Rebecca’s grandmother Pearle...made the best shortbread cookies, and Rebecca’s book is just as delicious as those cookies!” (Beverly Sills)

“A charming memoir of summers spent on the coast of Maine.” (Daily News)

“Personal and evocative.” (San Francisco Examiner)

“A satisfying mix of memoir and cookbook.” (Boston Globe)

“A charming, well written account of three generations of women and their summer adventures in Kennebunkport.” (Portland Phoenix)

“A book bound to leave readers feeling that summer just can’t come soon enough.” (Los Angeles Times)

“A homespun travelogue that’s breezy, practical and likely to charm even armchair gourmands not partial to the beach.” (Baltimore Sun)

“A pleasure to read. . . . You’ll have this book plastered open on your kitchen counter all summer.” (New York Times)

“An interesting, mouth-watering read.” (Bangor Daily News)

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
BY ALL ACCOUNTS, MY GREAT UNCLE, SAM GOLDSMITH, THE BROTHER OF MY GRANDFATHER SOLOMON, HAD A GREAT APPETITE, NOT JUST FOR FOOD LIKE EVERYONE ELSE IN MY FAMILY, BUT FOR LIFE IN GENERAL. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Not interesting to me personally May 27 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Somehow I missed, when I ordered this book, that it's really about one woman's reflections on family summers in Maine and the restaurant she eventually founded, none of which meant or mean anything to me. The book is mostly reminiscenses and some recipes, and I guess I was looking for JUST recipes, and none of the rest. So it really isn't interesting to me personally and I will just resell my copy. However, if you know the woman, know the restaurant, or for some other reason care about those components to it, you would probably greatly enjoy it, as others here clearly have. For my part, I'll read the "New England Clam Shack Cookbook," which is much more in keeping with what I was looking for. Light on the reminiscences of family history, heavy on the recipes and light general trivia about New England.
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5.0 out of 5 stars SUMMER IN MAINE March 12 2004
Format:Hardcover
BEING FROM THE MIDWEST I HAVE DEVELOPED A LOVE OF THE OCEAN, ESPECIALLY THE SHORES OF MAINE. I HAVE BEEN TO MAINE ON SEVERAL SUMMER TRIPS. NOW IT ZERO OUTSIDE WITH A WIND CHILL OF 20 BELOW. (NATIVE CHICAGOIANS CALL IT THE HAWK) EVEN MY BULLDOG DOESNT WANT TO GO OUT. SO, I HAVE JUST PURCHASED THIS BOOK AND I AM IMMEDIATELY TRANSFORMED. IT FEELS LIKE IT IS JULY AND I AM AT THE SHORE. SO I GET OFF MY COUCH (MY BULLDOG DOESNT EVEN WANT TO GET INTO THE CAR) GO TO THE LOCAL FISH HOUSE, PICK UP A POUND OF LOBSTER MEAT AND MAKE A ROLL. I MAKE A PITCHER OF THE HOME MADE LEMONADE AND HAVE A FEAST. I CANT WAIT UNTIL THE BLUEBERRIES GO BELOW SEVEN DOLLARS A PINT SO I CAN MAKE THAT BLUEBERYY PIE. GREAT READ IN THE MIDDLE OF WINTER.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great cookbook June 14 2003
By mthoran
Format:Hardcover
The recipes in this book are excellent. Simple and down-to-earth, but surprisingly not available in other more encyclopedic books on seafood cooking. The book is beautifully laid out. As to the family history and personal biography, for my taste the book would have been better without them. I'm sure that page after page of minutiae about her relatives is fascinating to Ms. Charles, but believe me, the rest of the world is no better for them. Five stars as a cookbook, one star for effort as a memoir/family history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome summer! May 21 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I love this book. It is full of great stories and recipes--from the Blueberry Pie recipe on page 108 to the Lobster Roll recipe on page 209 and all of the other 70 recipes that are scattered throughout the 240 pages of this book. Rebecca covers everything: the history behind the food,the restaurant, and her family; she gives helpful tips so you can recreate the dishes easily at home--THERE IS NO BOOK OUT THERE THAT CAN COMPARE. It's not just another boring cookbook, it is an adventure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar Shellfish Fare May 17 2003
Format:Hardcover
I'm not certain what book reviewer Laura Cella bought, but there are more than 75 recipes in this fabulous book, INCLUDING the Pearl Oyster Bar LOBSTER ROLL (page # 209) and their famous BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE PIE (page # 108.) My cover has a photo of the blueberry crumble pie right on the front. The oyster roll recipe also appears in the book, as well as a wonderful Blackberry Nectarine Crisp (which I just made using peaches instead of nectarinses and it came out great!) and all of the recipes for which Pearl Oyster Bar has been named one of the best restaurants in New York City. I travel to NYC once a month and never miss the chance to eat there. This book was a joy from beginning to end. Ms. Cella's review should be immediately removed for erroneous information. Buy the book, you'll love it!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Mother's Day Treasure of Maine days May 7 2003
Format:Hardcover
Publisher's Weekly off base, yet again---BIG surprise!!! We loved this book, my wife read it and passed it on to me. We're buying copies for both of our mothers for Mother's Day becasue it is such a terrific mother daughter granddaughter story. It's not overly sweet, there's tension and beautifully, fully described decades of the Maine coast. AND you get fish recipes you can make! The combination is unbeatable.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A cookbook and more!
I love the Pearl Oyster Bar and go everytime I visit New York City. Just like Mario Batali says on the back cover, it's the best lunch spot around. Read more
Published on May 7 2003 by RAS 94115
5.0 out of 5 stars A medal for Rebecca Charles
Anyone know the govenor of Maine ? He ought to give Rebecca a medal! Do you how many times I've seen folks saying here & there on the internet that they're going to Maine for... Read more
Published on April 28 2003 by "lindamanning3"
5.0 out of 5 stars More then a Cook Book!
Lobster Rolls and Blueberry Pie is more then just a cookbook, but a wonderfully blended compilation of stories and recipes from Rebecca Charles childhood in Maine. Read more
Published on April 24 2003 by Steven J. Kleine
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT Gift!!!
I have been wanting to learn how to cook fish at home but have been afraid. This book made it so easy---it's filled with luscious shellfish recipes and SIMPLE instructions for... Read more
Published on April 5 2003 by "dawnempire"
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite, mouthwatering recipes and photography!
Even the title LOBSTER ROLLS AND BLUEBERRY PIE makes our mouths water! What a gorgeous book, filled with exquisite stories and photography and, best of all, recipes from one of... Read more
Published on April 4 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
I love this book. It's touching, informative, and the recipes are easy to make. The feel of the book is great too, with the vintage photos and the great design--you just want to... Read more
Published on April 2 2003
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