Now that temperatures are falling and the days are getting shorter, do you find yourself fantasizing about creating delicious fall dishes? Need something to occupy you while you cook? Sample these cooking-related audiobooks in which food is inextricably linked to home and culture; an essential part of what shapes a self.
Ever wondered what it would be like to work in a New York City kitchen? Narrated in her unstinting, intimate voice, Gabrielle Hamilton's memoir Blood, Bones, and Butter invites you along for a wild ride through her singular life, beginning with childhood in rural Pennsylvania and culminating with the opening of her small, unfussy Manhattan restaurant, Prune. Hamilton's description of her rebellious teen years in 1980's NYC is a blast, her work in various kitchens a connecting theme throughout the book.
Filled with enticing flavors and spices, Marcus Samuelsson's memoir Yes, Chef details a life of hard work and far-flung journeys. Born into poverty in Ethiopia and orphaned after his mother succumbs to tuberculosis, Samuelsson immigrates to Sweden with his sister and later to the United States. In short order he attains success at Aquavit in New York City, is awarded best chef by the James Beard Foundation, helms a state dinner at the Obama White House and opens a successful restaurant, Red Rooster, in Harlem.
Interested in food science and history? Divided into sections for each of the four elements, Michael Pollan's Cooked is an in-depth examination of the processes required to transform raw ingredients into finished meals. Pollan recounts apprenticeships with master chefs who teach him braising, (water), grilling (fire), fermentation (earth) and baking (air).
Padma Lakshmi begins her memoir Love, Loss, and What We Ate with the aftermath of the collapse of her marriage to author Salman Rushdie. The host of Bravo's popular Top Chef, Lakshmi describes her Indian upbringing and a life intertwined with food.
Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal tells the story of Eva Thorvald, an aspiring foodie who overcomes a difficult childhood and adolescence in Minnesota and Iowa to become a famous chef. Deftly narrated by Amy Ryan and Michael Stuhlbarg and featuring Midwestern recipes, each chapter of Eva's story is told by a different character.
What are your favorite cooking-themed stories? Before you delve into your next culinary masterpiece, enjoy this video.