- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: Scribner; 1 edition (Oct. 18 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 143918187X
- ISBN-13: 978-1439181874
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.5 x 22.9 cm
- Shipping Weight: 431 g
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #320,094 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace Hardcover – Oct 18 2011
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“An Everlasting Meal is beautifully intimate, approaching cooking as a narrative that begins not with a list of ingredients or a tutorial on cutting an onion, but with a way of thinking…. Tamar is one of the great writers I know—her prose is exquisitely crafted, beautiful and clear-eyed and open, in the thoughtful spirit of M.F.K. Fisher. This is a book to sink into and read deeply.” —Alice Waters, from the Foreword
"It can be tricky, in this age of ethically charged supermarket choices, to remember that eating is an act of celebration. Tamar Adler's terrific book wisely presents itself as a series of how to’s—How To Boil Water, How to Have Balance, How to Live Well—with the suggestion that it's not only possible to do all these things, but in fact a pleasure. An Everlasting Meal provides the very best kind of lesson (reminding us we enjoy being taught), that there is real joy to be had in eating, and eating well." --Dan Barber, Chef/Co-Owner of Blue Hill and Blue Hill at Stone Barns
“Tamar Adler understands a simple truth that seems to evade a lot of cookbook writers and self-proclaimed ‘foodies’: cooking well isn't about special equipment or exotic condiments or over-tested recipes (and it sure isn't about ‘quickfire challenges’ or kicking it up a notch). It's about learning some basics, respecting the ingredients, and developing a little culinary intuition, or maybe just plain common sense. A book can’t necessarily teach you how to do that, but An Everlasting Meal will almost certainly inspire you to teach yourself.” --Colman Andrews, author of The Country Cooking of Italy and Editorial Director of TheDailyMeal.com
“In this beautiful book, Tamar Adler explores the difference between frugal and resourceful cooking. Few people can turn the act of boiling water into poetry. Adler does. By the time you savor the last page, your kitchen will have transformed into a playground, a boudoir and a wide open field. An Everlasting Meal deserves to be an instant and everlasting culinary classic.” –Raj Patel, author of The Value of Nothing and Stuffed and Starved
"An Everlasting Meal is a great thrill to read. Anyone who cooks is engaged in a re-creation of the Enlightenment Age--beginning with alchemy and mystery, always grasping towards chemistry and a tasty supper. With this book, Tamar Adler has chronicled our epic. Her tone manages to make the reader almost feel like he is thinking out loud. A marvelous accomplishment." –Jack Hitt, contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine
“Lessons so right and so eloquent that I think of them as homilies." --Corby Kummer, The New York Times Book Review
“Reads less like a cookbook than like a recipe for a delicious life.” --New York Magazine
"Reading [An Everlasting Meal] is like having a cooking teacher whispering suggestions in your ear.... Mindfulness, I’m discovering through this terrific book, can be delicious."
--Novella Carpenter, author of Farm City
“Tamar Adler has written the best book on ‘cooking with economy and grace’ that I have read since MFK Fisher.”
"What it really is is a book about how to live a good life: take the long view, give to others, learn from everything you do, and always, always, always mindfully enjoy what you are doing and what you’ve done. The fact you’ll learn to be a great cook is just a bonus." --Forbes.com
"Adler proves herself an adept essayist in this discourse on instinctive home cooking. Though highly personal, it’s much less a food memoir than a kind of cooking tao." --The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"Simultaneously meditative and practical, about how to appreciate and use what you have and how to prepare it appropriately with a minimum of fuss, space, equipment, or waste." --The Austin Chronicle
About the Author
Tamar Adler is a contributing writer to Vogue. She has written for The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times Book Review, The Believer, and The NewYorker.com. Adler has won a James Beard Award and an IACP Award. Tamar is the author of Something Old, Something New and An Everlasting Meal. She lives in Hudson, New York.
Alice Waters is the visionary chef and owner of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California. She is the author of four cookbooks, including Chez Panisse Vegetables and Fanny at Chez Panisse. Known as the Queen of Local Food, she founded the Edible schoolyard at Berkeley’s Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School. She lives in San Francisco.
Top customer reviews
Tamar's lovely, whimsical writing (honestly - my copy is FULL of underlined passages to linger over again) and her down-to-earth style and ideas for eating with economy and grace - made me feel she was standing in my kitchen and peering into the cupboard.
Incredible, affordable recipes and thoughts on "making do" and how to turn a dish that is over-cooked/too salty/underdone etc actually made me laugh out loud with her brilliant sense of fun and common sense.
Her book won't be in my bookshelf. It will end up a soup-stained, dog-eared disaster as I'm keeping it close in the kitchen. With many a stale breadcrumb hiding in between the pages.
Tamar. Keep writing. We need another book!
I had slightly mixed feelings when I ordered the book. I loved the concept, and really wanted inspiration to be more of an intuitive cook and less reliant on recipes all the time, but I was wary when some reviews pointed to the pretentious prose used throughout. I am not a fan of that type of writing. While I love to eat delicious food, it doesn't prompt particularly profound thoughts.
But, I've started reading it, and I am totally in love with this book. I'm barely half-way through and felt compelled to write a review. I have totally gotten sucked in by the writing style. Yes, there have been a couple times where I've rolled my eyes, but they've been few and far between so far. It just seems to work.
I haven't learned anything radically new. I'm already fairly adept in the kitchen and have learned a lot from my mother-in-law (a 75 year old Italian nonna) about simple ways to infuse flavour in dishes. Maybe this is why the book speaks to me - it is very similar to how she cooks. And I love her cooking. Lots of good olive oil, garlic, onions, parsley. Even though there haven't been any revolutionary tips so far, it has really inspired me to let go of recipes. To cook up vegetables, grains and beans and then figure out how to repurpose them for different meals through the week. To think about how I cook now, and what I love to cook, and how to make that process less reliant on recipes. I really can't explain it, but my eyes feel totally opened by what are really some basic, yet sage, words of advice. I already know I will blow through this book in the next day or so, and I already know that I want to read through it again.
I started reading it on my way home last night. I got home and needed to make a little something to eat for a late dinner. Nothing big. Just for me. I had a fairly empty fridge. But, I knew I had bell peppers (that had been sitting in there for longer than I'd like), strained tomato frozen in ice trays, shallots, garlic and eggs. Inspired by the book, I sauteed up the shallot, bell pepper and garlic, added the tomato and let that cook down. Seasoned and added lots of parsley. Cracked an egg on top. Ate it with bread I had made way earlier and frozen. And it was probably the tastiest thing I had eaten...definitely all week, maybe more. And it took 20 minutes with some very basic pantry ingredients.
If you are totally new to cooking, I don't think this is for you. You need some basic techniques and fluency in the kitchen. You need to know how to roast a chicken, how to make soup, basic roasting/sauteeing/braising/boiling techniques for vegetables (and meat, if that's your thing). But if you are like me - a fairly competent cook, who loves to do it, but wanting to bust out of the recipes, then I think this little book might have a lot to offer.
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