Black Beans by Laurie Colwin

256px-Annibale_Carracci_The_BeaneaterLaurie Colwin is the writer-turned-foodwriter in recent contemporary American foodwriting most likely to win “Most Unabashedly Well-Loved” by her audience. She writes of what home is and what families are supposed to be – and of the nurturing potential of food. Nothing complex, no layers or arguments. Just a clear-eyed gaze and a hug.

Screen Shot 2014-09-14 at 10.37.00 AMTo continue reading this piece in full (and to see the recipes provided and more) go to google books where Laurie Colwin writes of black beans.

Food Porn by Molly O’Neill

304px-Baker_BananaOriginator of the term ‘food porn’, Molly O’Neill describes the world of food as it stands today. This article was written in 2003 in the Columbia Journalism Review, but it clearly is as thorough and as true as it was on the day it was written.

On a balmy May evening in 1997, I was at a bookstore in Santa Barbara, California, signing copies of my third cookbook. It wasn’t my best book, and nearly every chapter of it had previously appeared in my food column in The New York Times Magazine. Nevertheless, nearly two hundred people waited to pay me homage — as well as $26.95 for the book.

The magazine was one of the most powerful platforms for food writing in the nation and, to the people in line, I was a rock star. My mother, a sensible Ohioan, was with me that night and she was appalled. She stood near as fans gushed admiration for my prose and recipes.

Finally, as if unable to contain herself another second, my mother interrupted one woman’s compliments and asked: “Do you actually cook that stuff?”

“Of course not,” replied the customer, who looked like my mother, tall, lean, with a white cap of stylishly coiffed hair. “Every week I cut them out of the magazine and promise myself I will cook them. Don’t we all?”

 

Continue reading this story at alternet

Critics in the World of the Rising Souffle by Nora Ephron

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The food world can be a terribly gossipy place, particularly when the people in it start to look at themselves as Players. Before “foodies” there was “The Food Establishment”, way back in 1968, and here’s Nora Ephron to tell us all about it.

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To continue reading, please go to New York Magazine for September 30, 1968

An Alphabet for Gourmets by MFK Fisher – A is for Dining Alone

RV-AB739_FISHER_G_20110217235859Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher is known to those who’ve read her as the writer who ‘created’ modern American foodwriting – or at the least, stretched the form from something generally limited to logical discussions on what to cook and how to cook it into something different: sprawling, magnificent, emotional songs to the hearts of readers who eat food and who think about what it means. Let’s start with A ~

A is for dining alone … and so am I, if a choice must be made between most people I know and myself. This misanthropic attitude is one I am not proud of, but it is firmly there, based on my increasing conviction that sharing food with another human being is an intimate act, which should not be indulged in lightly.

There are few people alive with whom I care to pray, sleep, dance, sing, and (perhaps most of all, except sleep) share my bread and wine. Of course there are moments when such unholy performances must take place, in order to exist socially, but they are endurable because they need not be the only fashion of self-nourishment.

Continue reading this story here at Gourmet Magazine.