Review: Table of Contents by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp
Title: Table of Contents
Author: Judy Gelman & Vicki Levy Krupp
Publisher: Adams Media
Release Date: November 30, 2010
Nat’s One-Sentence Synopsis: From the women who created BookClubCookbook.com comes a cookbook chock full of recipes and chatty anecdotes from best-selling authors.
Though I profess to being generally inept in the culinary department, I can follow a recipe and produce a reasonable facsimile of many meals or desserts that I attempt. My younger sister would handily win a ”who owns the most cookbooks’ contest–Jess: 56; Nat: 12–but I’m the only one of us who can claim ownership of a book lover’s cookbook.
I received a copy of Table of Contents: From Breakfast with Anita Diamant to Dessert with James Patterson–a Generous Helping of Recipes, Writings, and Insights from Today’s Bestselling Authors by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp and jumped right in.
Part cookbook, part anecdotal anthology, this cookbook offers recipes, author Q&A, and insight into the stories behind recipes found in some of my favorite novels. The format is a bit unorthodox as far as cookbooks go, but I enjoyed reading about each author, his or her inspiration or short narrative, and the accompanying recipe (or recipes!).
Table of Contents covers every course–from drinks to desserts–and the step-by-step recipes are clear and easy to follow.
A few of the authors, some of their literary works, and the recipes submitted:
- Jill Ciment (The Tattoo Artist): Blue Sky Bakery’s Bran Muffins
- Chris Cleave (Little Bee): Post Colonial Pie
- Lisa Genova (Still Alice) Alice’s White Chocolate Challah Pudding
- Sara Gruen (Water for Elephants) Merran Neville’s Pavlova*
- Frances Mayes (Under the Tuscan Sun) Frances Mayes’ Summer Shrimp Salad
- Jacquelyn Mitchard (The Deep End of the Ocean) Next Day Rice Pudding
- Lisa See (Shanghai Girls) Lisa See’s Won Tons
- Garth Stein (The Art of Racing in the Rain) Enzo’s Pancakes
- Tom Perrotta (The Absinence Teacher) Nina’s Minestrone
My only gripe is that I prefer my cookbooks to have glossy (wipe-able!) pages with brilliant photos of the process and finished product. While there are photos of the authors, there aren’t any food photos. Since this isn’t a traditional cookbook, I’m more apt to let this slide and understand that a photo-driven book might also be more costly to publish. That said, this book would still be a great gift for any book lover who dabbles in the kitchen!
*This weekend, I’m going to undertake Sara Gruen’s dessert recipe and, if all goes well, share photos as a part of Beth Fish Reads Weekend Cooking Challenge!