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Out of the Kitchen: Adventures of a Food Writer [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   247
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.4" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.65 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Publisher   John Daniel & Company Books
ISBN  1880284782  
EAN  9781880284780  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Jeannette Ferrary, a food writer for The New York Times and author of M.F.K. Fisher and Me, tells the story of her life as it relates to food. This is the journey from a girl's ambivalence about food ("women's work") to a career immersed in cuisine. Here are the changes she went through over feminism, career, food, marriage, divorce, childraising, work, and play. All along the way, food played an important part of her life, as heritage and legacy, as symbol, as nourishment, and as pleasure. The book contains many recipes as well as portraits of many of America's most famous chefs.

Buy Out of the Kitchen: Adventures of a Food Writer by Jeannette Ferrary from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781880284780 & 1880284782

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More About Jeannette Ferrary

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Jeannette Ferrary -- author of Between Friends: M.F.K. Fisher and Me -- writes for many publications, including Bon Appetit/I>, the New York Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle .

Jeannette Ferrary currently resides in San Francisco, in the state of California. Jeannette Ferrary was born in 1941.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Arts & Literature > Authors   [2814  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General   [54887  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Gastronomy > Essays   [216  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
What Makes a Food Writer?  May 7, 2007
How does one become a "food writer", and what does that actually mean anyway? These are questions that Ferrary seeks to answer in her food memoir, and questions which interested me also, as one with a long-time interest in writing and many aspects of food.

In the Introduction Ferrary indicates that "there must have been seeds [in her childhood] that eventually flowered into a passion for food, its history and meaning and unending pleasures; the joy of growing and preparing and sharing food with friends, of seeing it as heritage and comfort and love. There must have been something. That's what this book is about."

Ferrary mines her early childhood memories, particularly those in her mother's and grandmother's kitchens and in the neighborhoods she grew up in, for the seeds that are later cultivated into a passion for food. Each chapter is followed by a simple recipe illustrating in an amusing fashion the food lesson or food memory recounted in that chapter.

These seeds are present in the childhood memories of many others who don't become food writers, and it becomes apparent that circumstances and serendipitous events later in life paved the way to Ferrary's successful career in food writing.

Her tales are amusing and well-written, demonstrating a self-deprecating sense of humor and a sense of humility. She was in the presence of some truly great chefs and food experts - Julia Child, Alice Waters, Craig Claiborne, to name a few, but was always well aware that she was there "..gathering the research, tasting, testing, playing the scribe....", never really on the same playing field as these great personalities, since as she frequently admitted, she wasn't much of a cook herself.

Ferrary's descriptions of Julia Child, particularly the distinctive voice, are so apt and so precise, that the sound and cadence of Julia's voice resonates as if she is in front of you (on the TV) once again. Although Ferrary mentions other famous chefs and food personalities, most of those are casual acquaintances and one-time meetings compared to the frequent encounters with Julia, and she has a real reverence and respect for this larger-than-life personality who transformed the American food experience.

The memories of childhood and early adulthood consumed the majority of the book, leaving a disproportionate amount of writing related to the development of her craft and her successes in food writing. I would have liked to read more about the specifics of the craft, but perhaps that's the subject for another book, which I will gladly read if she decides to write it.
Out of the Kitchen  Jun 23, 2006
I would like to offer a correction and some clarification on B. Marold's review of this book. It is Simone Beck and not Weill who had a cooking school in Provence. And Julia Child did not just happen to "live across the street" from Simca. Julia and Paul Child built a house on Simca's property.

I was fortunate enough to also take classes from Simca. Taking classes meant that you lived in one of the houses on her estate for a week or two and met each morning for a class and the resulting lunch. As it happened, Julia and Paul Child were also encamped at the same time. They were a delightful couple and I have very fond memories of that summer in Provence and my time spent at Simca's.

Usually we had dinner at some wonderful restaurant but there were evenings that we went shopping in the village or Nice for fresh fish and cooked dinner in the very kitchen at served as the laboratory for "Mastering the Arts of French Cooking." A priceless experience.
Very Good memoir writing. Good but not excellent foodie stuff  Aug 12, 2005
`Out of the Kitchen', subtitled `Adventures of a Food Writer' by Jeannette Ferrary is very similar in subject and style to the two more famous memoirs, `Tender at the Bone' and `Comfort Me With Apples' by prominent food journalist Ruth Reichl. While Ms. Ferrary is quite probably almost as good a writer as Ms. Reichl, it seems she has had a much less interesting life. To the good, like all very good writers, Ms. Ferrary has given us an excellent treatment of her material.

As I analyze pieces of good writing either whether in essays or music, I am amazed by how much a talented writer can make of a small event. Ms. Ferrary, for example opens with a description two episodes from her very early years, aged two and three years old respectively. The first deals with baby Jeannette's thwarting the wiles of her parents' efforts for her to take a pill by camouflaging it in a gumdrop. The second is a vignette regarding little Jeannette's becoming lost almost literally in front of her house in Brooklyn when she takes her first foray out onto the sidewalk with mother on the watch from the second floor window.

Before I get to mired in niggling little complaints and details, let me say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It was at least as satisfying to me as other recent memoirs from the likes of Mimi Sheraton and Alan Richman, even if it is not quite up to the level of Reichl and one of Ms. Ferrary's favorite subjects, M.F.K. Fisher.

The greatest thing I take from this book is an affirmation of how generous and justifiably revered is the person and memory of Ms. Julia Child. This was shown clearly in an event promoting the sale of Ms. Child's video cooking classes at a West Coast Macy's store where Ms. Ferrary played the role of interviewer. Macy's had promised a plug of Ms. Ferrary's new book during the event. At the last minute, a Macy's PR functionary told Jeannette it couldn't be done, as it would take attention away from Julia Child's appearance. When Julia got wind of the problem, she glanced through the book, made some very kind comments about it to the author, and promptly got up to the microphone and praised the book to the gathered throng in Macy's, much to the chagrin of the PR hack standing nearby.

Practically no other culinary luminary gets away without some little catty comment. Even a briefly snide quote from M.F.K. Fisher about Julia Child backfires with a poor reflection on Ms. Fisher's fairness about her contemporary culinary stars.

One concern is that the synopsis of the book on the back cover is a bit misleading in that it says it `contains portraits of America's most famous food-world celebrities - Julia Child, Alice Waters, Craig Claiborne, Jacques Pepin, Marcella Hazan and Robert Mondavi, to name a few'. It does indeed contain material of substance on the first three of these six people, but the second three get literally no more than a sentence, with Pepin getting a sentence and a snapshot with the author. The same synopsis touts the two dozen recipes found at the end of some of the essays. Unlike many essays from the likes of John Thorne and James Villas, where the subject is a particular recipe such as panzanella or Brunswick stew (respectively) recipes in books of memoirs should be taken merely as part of the memory and not as a sound culinary source. The only exceptions I can think of to this rule is the Danny Kaye recipe for lemon pasta in Reichl's `Comfort Me With Apples' and the recipes in `Cooking for Mr. Latte' by Amanda Hesser.

Speaking of the great Danny Kaye, I am amazed that his name didn't make it to the list of names on the back cover, as his mention as a guest at a major party given by Craig Claiborne was at least as long as the sentences devoted to some other figures.

The quality of the writing is welcome, as it makes up for the fact that only the last fifty of the 230 pages really deals with professional culinary writing. One of the themes of the first three-fourths of the book is the fact that the author had no inkling that her fate was to be a food expert and writer. The first quarter of the book contains essays on the author's childhood where the most important food topics were penny candy, ice cream, and her Spanish grandmother's wiles with squid in a black ink sauce. The second of the four sections presents essays on the author's adolescence and high school years. The third of the four sections deals with college, marriage, first husband's graduate school years and first job, and divorce.

In the last of the four sections, we experience Ms. Ferrary's admission into the culinary elite when she travels to Provence to be a student (with fellow poet, Frances Mayes) in Simone Weil's cooking school. As luck would have it, Ms. Weil, who is a co-author with Julia Child of `Mastering the Art of French Cooking', also happened to live across the street from Ms. Child's Provence cottage, and Ms. Child happened to be in residence when Ms. Ferrary was in class. So, Jeannette, very early in her career, got to meet the most influential American culinary writer and was able to build important events in her career on that acquaintance.

If you really like culinary memoirs, this is as good or better than some, but not as good as the best. The best aspect of the book is in the quality of the writing.

A delightful leisure read  Jan 6, 2005
Storyteller and food fan Jeanette Ferrary's memoir packs in humor and food affection, beginning her story with childhood memories of food and its effects on her life and recounting her journey to adulthood and the travels which brought her in touch with food traditions across the country. Out Of The Kitchen: Adventures Of A Food Writer is a delightful leisure read, charting Jeanette's personal encounters with some of the most famous cooks in the world, and her eventual rise to become a food columnist for the New York Times.

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