Tag Archives: Recipe for Disaster

Three Foodie Reads For Summer

“Recipe for Disaster”

There are recipes in this book to be sure. But more than that, there are stories that will touch and stay with you long after you set its spine down.

“Recipe for Disaster” (Chronicle Books), of which I received a review copy, is by Alison Riley. It is the first book by this Brooklyn-based writer and creative director, and founder of the paper and text studio, Set Editions.

It’s a unique collection of 40 essays and recipes highlighting how good food provides sustenance in so many ways through so many trying times. Riley has assembled an impressive roster of big-name contributors who share strikingly personal stories about how food has soothed and assuaged during some of the worst moments in life.

Comedian Sarah Silverman writes about how chocolate-covered marshmallow cookies known as pinwheels were the only thing that comforted her when she first experienced long-term depression at age 13. Alice Waters of Chez Panisse reveals how the throes of the pandemic made her appreciate all the more the beauty of a fresh salad made with the produce grown by her local farms.

Actor-comedian Bowen Yang admits that as a child he didn’t care for his mom’s cooking, but now appreciates it so much that her version of ma po tofu is the first thing he wants when he goes home to Colorado. And in one of the most stirring accounts, broadcast journalist Alex Wagner explains how her simple, hastily made canned-tuna sandwich that she toted to work would turn out to be the only thing to offer any sense of normalcy on Sept. 11, 2001.

“The Jewish Deli”

As if there was a need for more reasons to love a good Jewish deli, along comes “The Jewish Deli: An Illustrated Guide To The Chosen Food” (Chronicle Books), of which I received a review copy.

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