I will not give you full details of the books because that would spoil it for those of you who would be interested in reading them. Instead, I will just sum them up briefly and tell you what I liked about them.
Editions Anchor Books
While reading My Life in France, I rediscovered the culinary side of my own country through the eyes of Julia Child. It made me hungry and I wanted to try a lot of the dishes she mentioned (I come from the North-West of France and I obviously have not tried every type of food or recipe that exists in France, I would need more than a lifetime I reckon…). It is a delightful story where food, love and anecdotes of being an expat in Paris mix together. I was familiar with the character of Julia Child through her cookbooks and extracts of her TV shows before but My Life in France was a fascinating read and definitely gave me an insight at who she really was behind all this.
Editions Vintage Books Random House
I had never heard about Anna Del Conte before I watched one of Nigella Lawson’s culinary shows that mentioned her with the recipe for spaghetti with marmite. I was really keen to know more about her but since we were in the middle of moving back to Ireland from Australia at the time, I forgot about it… until E. gifted me the book the following year! I really love Italian food and it was one of the best non fiction books gifted to me (he followed up two years later by giving me her amazing cookbook Gastronomy of Italy).
Anna Del Conte’s memoir particularly appealed to me because a lot of my own memories are related to food. I really loved how the chapters include the recipes of the dishes she mentions in her stories. This way, if you feel hungry reading the account of such or such part of her food life, you actually get to try it if you want. The lemon lover in me was delighted to get the recipe for granita di limone, which I would obviously love to try with snow like she did when living in Milan.
If you love Italian food, please do read this book!
Editions Simon and Schuster
I have been reading Molly’s blog Orangette for the past seven years and I really like her writing and stories. I finally got my hands on her memoir Delancey earlier this year and thoroughly enjoyed reading this very honest life story. This is not embellished but told as it was and this is something I really appreciate when reading non fiction. It is a vivid account of what went behind the opening of Delancey and I feel like it is quite eye-opening of what is involved in starting a food business such as a restaurant (or café, pizzeria, etc.).
This story has not only had a happy ending but a happy continuing and two more venues have opened following the success of Delancey pizza restaurant (Seattle, USA): Essex and Dino’s Tomato Pie. (P.S. this memoir will definitely make you feel very hungry for pizza.)