Thursday, February 21, 2008

About Cookbooks and Nostalgia

"As anthropologist Arjun Appadurai concluded in an article on cookbooks in contemporary India, "cookbooks appear to belong to the literature of exile, of nostalgia and loss." Our recipes represent our often unsuccessful attempts to relive the past, to recover lost comforts or reclaim a forgotten heritage. We take them with us into foreign lands. We pass them on to our friends and children. We share them with strangers. The foods of our pasts are the most elemental artifacts of who we are: who our parents and friends and lovers were and are, where we have been and where we ended up, what we treasure, what we disdain, what fuels our endeavors, what comforts, what sustains. So powerful is food as an expression of the self that we even orchestrate favorite meals for those we execute. We want to honor at least that much of the worst criminal. Good food. Finally."

Patty Kirk, from "Starting from Scratch"


Newer Post Older Post Home