Tender at the Bone: Growing up at the Table by Ruth ReichlTender at the Bone: Growing up at the Table by Ruth Reichl

Genre: Memoir
Format: Paperback and ebook
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date: 1998
Pages: 284
Source: Library

The Book:
From the publisher:

At an early age, Ruth Reichl discovered that “food could be a way of making sense of the world. . . . If you watched people as they ate, you could find out who they were.” Her deliciously crafted memoir, Tender at the Bone, is the story of a life determined, enhanced, and defined in equal measure by a passion for food, unforgettable people, and the love of tales well told. Beginning with Reichl’s mother, the notorious food-poisoner known as the Queen of Mold, Reichl introduces us to the fascinating characters who shaped her world and her tastes, from the gourmand Monsieur du Croix, who served Reichl her first soufflé, to those at her politically correct table in Berkeley who championed the organic food revolution in the 1970s. Spiced with Reichl’s infectious humor and sprinkled with her favorite recipes, Tender at the Bone is a witty and compelling chronicle of a culinary sensualist’s coming-of-age.

My Thoughts:
One of my friends on LibraryThing has a fabulous culinary arts book list that I periodically browse and add books to my own wish list. I have heard good things about Ruth Reichl’s books so I decided to start with her first.

I really only know Ruth Reichl from her occasional guest judge gigs on Top Chef. I knew she had a good sense of humor and is extremely knowledgeable about food and cooking. Other than that I didn’t know much other than she’s been a food critic and an editor of Gourmet magazine.

This book is about her childhood and early career. She had a difficult relationship with her mother but had other relatives and a family housekeeper who helped build her love for food and cooking.

In the author’s note she says ‘storytelling, in my family, was highly prized”. I enjoyed reading her stories from her fascinating and interesting life. Her travels and adventures are kind of amazing. Her trip to North Africa with a college friend would have terrified me.

Interspersed throughout the book are recipes many of which came from friends and acquaintances. I’m not sure I’d try any of them but there is quite a variety.

I’m looking forward to reading more of her books.

3.5 stars Rating 3.5/5