I was enormously lucky to lead a discussion with Ruth Reichl, author and editor, and Dan Barber, chef-owner of the Blue Hill restaurants in New York and author, who came to the 92nd Street Y in New York City to talk about our food. The reason for the event was my new book Grocery: The Buying and Selling of Food In America. But the discussion ranged from GMOs and organic food, to big A Ha! moments for both Ruth and Dan, Ruth’s in a small plane filled with the smells of strawberries from Chico farm, Dan’s on a Klaas Martens’s field, which grew cover crops, not wheat. I saved my favorite question from the audience to read last: “Is ice cream always bad for you?” Yes, ice cream has sugar in it, and sugar seems to be considerably Read On »

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I’ve been exploring Neapolitan pizzas in NYC, but I haven’t had a better one than I did yesterday at Citizen Pie, a new addition to the Cleveland food scene, in a once gritty neighborhood directly across from Beachland Ballroom, one of the most cutting-edge/eclectic music venues in the state. Chef Vytauras Sasnauskas, Chef V, a native of Lithuania who arrived here in … No, stop … That was how I intended to begin this post, until now, having returned home from my second consecutive meal there. You see, on this night (last night) I’d brought my 16 y.o. son, James, and his friend there on the pretext that they would eat the best pizza they’d ever had. These boys like their pizza so much that they once actually bought a pizza at Brothers pizza on Coventry in Cleveland Heights, Read On »

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  Last week, I asked readers what kind of cookbook they’d most like to see written. The responses were all great, but I wanted to write about what was the most requested kind of book. It’s important because it’s exactly what my Little, Brown editor talked about (I once forgot to capitalize the publisher’s name and was asked how I could be so racially insensitive). Talk we did over the above oysters at Jeffrey’s Grocery in the West Village. Please note the humongous and delicious Island Creek oysters, which I recently wrote about here. Suggestions here ranged from lunches to Southern cooking to Rustbelt cooking to spices. Two big topics were cooking for one or two people, which I like, especially when I’m in Manhattan in a tiny apartment. The other was interest in sous vide cooking in the Read On »

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I’m meeting with my editor from Little, Brown at the end of the week to run through ideas for the next cookbook (which I claimed I wouldn’t write … so sue me; perhaps it’s an illness). But I honestly don’t know what to explore. So I’m coming here for ideas. Of course, I always have teaching in mind when I write a cookbook, teaching myself, first and foremost. But I’d like to put the question out to home cooks and chefs alike. What book is most necessary, what cookbook doesn’t yet exist? Sous vide is ever on my mind, but I don’t know if that’s the right thing to do. Also, there are now several good books out there on the subject from people who have more experience than I. Modernist Cuisine Made Easy, sous vide Read On »

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When the formidable Andrea Nguyen, author and teacher, wrote to me asking for help in promoting a kickstarter on behalf of a book about another of the country’s most important writers about food, I was eager to help. Within a day or two, Andrea wrote to say that they had reached their too-modest goal. But I still wanted to help and keep promoting because their print run is far smaller than it should be. This is potentially an important book about food and memory. So herewith, Andrea’s ode to Paula Wolfert (pictured above).–M.R. By Andrea Nguyen “I live in the now. I live for today and I make it work for me,” says Paula Wolfert in the Kickstarter video to fund a new book about her and her work. She’s speaking to lifestyle adjustments she’s made since her Read On »

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