Have you been following along with the cookbook club? If not, you can catch up starting here. This is my third season hosting the 92nd Street Y and Kitchen Arts & Letters online cookbook club. The season hasn’t even started yet and it’s already my favorite! The autumn 2021 cookbook club theme is Flavors of New York. For me (and millions more), that means the flavors of home.
That means flavors of many homes. Flavors carried as memories by migrants from every part of the world. Flavors that have melded over time – developed layer by layer, ingredient by ingredient, as our neighborhoods evolve. And then again as chefs reimagine these flavors in New York City’s beloved restaurants.
As with past seasons, two books are new releases, two have been around a few years. One has a strong personal connection for me. One is about a restaurant that has since closed, but the content of the book is so culturally rich and relevant that I had to include it. One is not about a restaurant but a beloved, historic, neighborhood specialty food store that had a profound influence on my career and kitchen. And one is a beloved anomaly – a French restaurant born in NYC that turned the tables by opening a Paris outpost two years later.
First, we’ll cook our way through West Village bistro classics with Chef Jody Williams’ Buvette: the pleasure of good food.
Then, Afro-Asian-American and pure Harlem cuisine with Between Harlem and Heaven by Alexander Smalls and JJ Johnson
We’ll follow that with the flavors of the Middle East from Brooklyn in Flavors of the Sun: The Sahadi’s Guide to Understanding, Buying, and Using Middle Eastern Ingredients by Christine Sahadi Whelan.
For our last book, we’ll head back to the West Village for red sauce reinvented at Don Angie with Italian American: Red Sauce Classics and New Essentials by Angie Rito, Scott Tacinelli, and Jamie Feldmar.
The flavor journey will take us around the world and through time and deep into the heart and soul of one of the world’s most famous and influential cities.
Beginning October 5 & 6, 2021, I’ll be leading TWO enthusiastic groups of passionate home cooks and culinary adventurers through four awesome books. Are you going to be one of them? (register here!)
We gather online (live via Zoom) every two weeks, that’s four 90-minute discussion about our experiences reading, cooking, and eating from that week’s featured cookbook (no live cooking). Conversations are always lively and engaging. And, we get to host some pretty spectacular guests from the world of food and words.
The program is so popular that we are now offering two sessions. There are Tuesday and Wednesday evening options that will follow the same format and schedule. Choose the one that works best for your schedule.
you have options
Want to get in on the discussion? Of course you do! There are two ways…
- Join the club: The live via Zoom cookbook club is hosted by the 92nd Street Y and Kitchen Arts & Letters bookstore in New York City. But you don’t have to be in NYC to join us (I’m not!). We’ll meet every other week on Zoom for four meetings (one per book). If you can’t make one, recordings will be available. Most important – all four books are included in the registration fee – brand new, shipped directly to you. Sign up HERE.
- Follow along here on Wander Eat and Tell: Not ready to commit to the live meetings? No problem! I’ll be blogging along with the program, sharing insights from our group discussions, and our experiences with specific recipes. Cook along, and share your experiences in the comments on the blog. Want to catch up on last season’s fun? Check out past posts by scrolling back in time here on Words on Wandering. Make sure to sign up for my newsletter HERE for regular updates.
However you choose to join in, my hope is that each book will lead us all on kitchen adventures that bring new perspectives on food, cooking, and culture. We’ll all be doing lots of cooking from these books. Even more importantly, I also encourage you to cozy up with each of them. Read beyond the recipes.
I like to think of cookbooks as travel guides. Read through for highlights before embarking on the journey. Get your imagination going and work up to the ultimate engagement with the recipes themselves.
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