The Secret of Cooking: Recipes for an Easier Life in the Kitchen

Norton. Sept. 2023. 432p. ISBN 9780393867633. $40. COOKING
In her first full-length cookbook, Wilson (The Way We Eat Now) doesn’t stray far from her roots as a food writer and journalist. A quirky table of contents is the first clue that this isn’t a typical cookbook, with headings like “Teach yourself to cook with a carrot” and “Something to take your mind off of it (whatever it is).” Wilson delivers musings on food and cooking that touch on technique and recipe-building but focus on the heart of the emotions found in the kitchen. Cooking philosophy and kitchen meditations surround recipes that are simple yet sturdy and include pairings and variation where appropriate. The occasional photograph or illustration carries the narrative forward, but there is no mistaking this is a cookbook for readers. This is a perfect addition to library shelves for patrons who enjoy the emotional connection with cooking and can’t get enough of other authors like Ella Risbridger and Ruby Tandoh.
VERDICT While best for cookbook readers, Wilson’s book provides plenty to learn for all levels of home cooks who have the desire to indulge in the contemplation and wisdom she provides.
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