The Tummy Trilogy: Calvin Trillin's collection of essays on cooking and eating, both as a travelling journalist and at home with his wife, Alice. Trillin uses stories about food to write about people, such as his young daughter who would always take a bagel to a Chinese restaurant 'just in case', or his wife, whom he caught grating Reggiano into Kraft macaroni and cheese; and about place, such as the arcade in New York's Chinatown where you can play tic tac toe against a live chicken. Trillin delights in people and place, and this love comes through his crisp clean prose. To be read with bagels and lox, or perhaps Chinese food, this collection is gentle, self-deprecating and very very funny.
Stuffed: Adventures of a Restaurant Family: Patricia Volk's rollicking autobiography is loud, energetic, sarcastic, loving and generous. The daughter of a restaurateur, she grew up rich and Jewish in 1950's New York. The stories she tells about her family and her upbringing, and the meals they shared, are entrancing.
Mrs Harvey's Sister in Law And Other Tasty Dishes: This delightful book was written for the author's daughters, and has a very intimate touch. Each recipe is introduced by an anecdote about its provenance, giving it a gentle gossippy feel. It's like reading one's grandmother's cookbook, a particular pleasure if, like me, your grandmother never kept one. Packed with all sorts of recipes, its real strength lies in cookies and baking; but it's also a lovely read whether or not you are planning to cook. To be enjoyed with a cup of tea and a biscuit.
The Supper of the Lamb: For anyone who is passionate about food, hospitality and grace! This delightfully rollicking and digressive book was written by an Episcopalian priest imbued with great good humour. The book is structured around the construction of a lamb stew. To be read for pleasure late at night with a generous glass of port.