Monday, December 28, 2009

A HOMEMADE LIFE : a great read from Molly Wizenberg

With "A Homemade Life" author Molly Wizenberg continues a trend first successful with the book “Julie and Julia” – a foodie blog brought to life in book form. Like “Julie and Julia” Wizenberg writes invitingly about her years in the kitchen and the many life-happenings that result from her delight in cooking. But unlike its successful predecessor, “A Homemade Life” takes us on a world-wide food journey, grounded in Wizenberg’s growing up years in Oklahoma, her college years in San Francisco and her contemporary life with husband (and fellow foodie Brandon) in Seattle - but spanning the Atlantic to take us on an extended visit to Paris - city of lights, food and romance - as well.

Meandering with Wizenberg in these pages we’re treated to many mouth-watering homemade recipes - the stuff most of us grew up eating and enjoying – and glimpses into Wizenberg’s life and travels as well. She takes us deep into the heart of her family, sharing the many joys (her romantic encounters both in the US and abroad, in Paris, are delightful reads for example) and, as this is a book based on real life, we share the sadnesses of her family too.

Holiday notes abound in the book but you won’t find one chapter devoted to Christmas or any other one holiday. Nor will you find the traditional “meats and poultry”, “fish”, "veggies", or "desserts"….type of organization either (albeit there is a nifty index in the back). Instead we DO find a wonderful mish mash of goodies that have brought joy or special meaning into Wizenberg’s life – and of course, hopefully into ours!

And hey, there’s a hint of Indiana in these pages too – check out the recipe for “Hoosier Pie” early on in the book – and have a bottle of high class bourbon on hand – Wizenberg assures us it’s a key ingredient for this Hoosier named treat!

In the end Wizenberg’s is an upbeat tale, featuring an author and a family that celebrate the good times with conviviality and with food - a book that only gets better the more we read.

For a special treat check out the blog that started it all:

and catch her monthly column in "bon appetite" magazine (available at the WL Public Library).