Wednesday, August 01, 2007
A Different Way of Looking at Food
I was browsing the shelves the other day and came across this title: Offbeat Food: Adventures in a Omnivorous World by Alan Ridenour [641.3 RID]. I love this book!
It starts at the beginning (biblically speaking), with a little information about the Garden of Eden and the apple. "You don't have to open a Bible to know that the fruit Eve gave Adam was an apple. In fact, opening the Bible won't help you with this at all, since nowhere in the book of Genesis is this particular fruit mentioned." The author suggests that the fig may have been the fruit in question. (Well, maybe, but does that mean we have to rename a man's Adam's apple an Adam's fig?) The first chapter, "Divine Eats," also explains what is meant by the term kosher, the significance of the Easter egg, and other religious holiday food customs.
The second chapter, "Omnivorous Adventures," is too gruesome to even mention!
The other chapters include: "Americana," which covers uniquely American foods such as SPAM (see this previous post), M & Ms, and Twinkies; "Too Good to Eat"--a look at basically inedible culinary treats (think back to those lovely to look at, but disgusting to eat, marzipan doodads you see around the holidays); "Chewing on Metaphors," which is of particular interest to a person who loves words; and "Food, Sex, Death...And Then?"--another chapter that I won't delve into here in case any of my readers have a delicate stomach!
Another fun book about food is Robert L. Wolke's What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained (with recipes) [641.5 WOL]. This book takes questions about food and cooking and then answers them. For instance, "Here in the South, the starch on our plates is often hominy grits instead of potatoes or rice. But I understand that they're made with lye. Isn't lye a very corrosive chemical used in drain cleaners?" Whoa...for sure I'll never be tempted to try grits after a question like that! But, Wolke does explain that the lye is thoroughly washed off, and he even directs the reader to a website, www.grits.com. (If you like What Einstein Told His Cook, I can also recommend, What Einstein Told His Barber: More Scientific Answers to Everyday Questions [500 WOL].)
There are numerous ways of looking at food differently, there is the "food festival" for instance, where a particular item is celebrated and overindulged in! The Nesmith Library is planning a Popcorn Festival for later this month, keep checking back for more information.
Have fun with your food, but remember, there are those who don't have enough to eat, so visit the Hunger Site today!
Posted by KURIOUS KITTY at 11:04 AM