cooking

Radio Readers BookByte: A Gustatory Home

Sep 15, 2017
Tom Averill

I’m Tom Averill, author of the culinary novel Secrets of the Tsil Café, and a “foodie” in my kitchen and in my library.

When I was writing my book, I became aware of how important food is to our identities as people, and how food memories shape us.  Cookbook writer Molly Katzen first learned the power of food at her childhood dinner table.  Her father had served in World War II, and while he was overseas, his mother died.  His favorite of all her dishes was tzimmes, a casserole dish of potatoes and onion and carrots often served at Rosh Hashanah.  Each year, Molly’s mother tried to replicate her mother-in-law’s recipe, and each year she failed—until the time her father tasted the tzimmes and broke down sobbing; his mother had come back to life in that dish.  Molly was 10 years old.  Perhaps all of us miss a person, along with the dish that person traditionally brought to the holiday meal.

Radio Readers BookByte: Food as Metaphor

Sep 13, 2017
Garland, Kansas / Kansas Memory, Kansas Historical Society

I was six years old when I realized that food can be dished up in two categories:  food that proves someone loves you, and food that proves someone doesn’t love you.

Let me explain.

Imagine that you go to your grandmother’s kitchen in the morning. Breakfast at your grandmother’s—crispy bacon, fluffy scrambled eggs, warm, tender cinnamon rolls—lets you know that the day will be good.  Life is good.  Someone loves you.

Radio Readers BookByte: Food of a Younger Me

Aug 30, 2017
Wiki Commons

Hello, Radio Readers.  This is Valerie Brown-Kuchera, talking to you from Quinter, where it’s a typical western Kansas fall day.  This kind of day reminds me so much of my first fall as a college student at Fort Hays State University almost 30 years ago.  Up to that point, my experiences with food had really resembled some of those related in The Food of a Younger Land, our fall read selection this month. 

Radio Readers BookByte: Strawberry Yields Forever

Aug 18, 2017
Jason Harper

My wife May has said that before she met me, she was living alone in a bleak, dark, drafty apartment, working long hours at a law firm, and that she only ate ramen noodles every day.

Back in her single days, she didn’t cook much because she was so busy with work, yet held a deep appreciation for good food – her being born in Mongolia and having traveled to many, many places, including China, Laos, Vietnam, The Philippines, Shangri-La, Jiǎnpǔzhài, and Katmandu.

American BBQ Secrets

Jul 15, 2016
Elena Heatherwick / Guardian

Texans take their barbecue seriously. So do other denizens of the High Plains, for that matter. Brad McDonald, an journalist from the South, recently set out to explain to the British readers of the UK newspaper The Guardian exactly how to go about making great American barbecue.

As a self-appointed foodie, I often watch Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives for cooking inspiration. Guy Fieri’s success at seeking eateries with reputations for amazing fare motivates me to look for excellent dining on road trips. Because of my research, I have a list of favorite restaurants. However, none of these culinary institutions matches the quality or flavor of my all-time preferred place to eat, Grandma Lottie’s kitchen.

blakleyhomeplace.blogspot.com

While living out of a suitcase has definite drawbacks, one of the bonuses of visiting new places is trying local foods. Because my family both moved and traveled a great deal as I grew up, I learned early the joy of sampling regional delights every time I hit the road.