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"True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat"


Food, glorious food --- it's so much more, of course, than what we eat. Food is memory, food is family, food is love, food is culture, and food is community. Today on ST, we speak by phone with Lisa Catherine Harper, the Bay Area-based author of the award-winning memoir, "A Double Life: Discovering Motherhood." Harper is also one of the co-edtiors of a terrific new anthology called "The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage: True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat." It's a collection of 29 personal essays on the close and myriad links that exist between our foods and ourselves, our tastes and our family ties, our recipes and our relationships. Here are writings on how children effectively learn (and re-learn) to eat, how food can bring together mothers and daughters (as well as grandfathers and grandsons), how gathering at the table to dine and converse is (whatever one's religious preference) a nearly sacred activity, and how (believe it not) preparing a meal together can even help married couples stay together. With contributions from Max Brooks, Jeff Gordinier, Phyllis Grant, Jen Larsen, Neal Pollack, and many others, this book is --- as the noted NYC chef Wylie Dufresne (of wd~50 fame) has written --- "a fantastic collection that is as much about relationships as it is about the food that bonds us."

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