Anything That Moves: Renegade Chefs, Fearless Eaters, and the Making of a New American Food Culture

Anything That Moves: Renegade Chefs, Fearless Eaters, and the Making of a New American Food Culture

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by Dana Goodyear, Jane Jacobs
     
 

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A new American cuisine is forming. Animals never before considered or long since forgotten are emerging as delicacies. Parts that used to be for scrap are centerpieces. Ash and hay are fashionable ingredients, and you pay handsomely to breathe flavored air. Going out to a nice dinner now often precipitates a confrontation with a fundamental question: Is that

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Overview

A new American cuisine is forming. Animals never before considered or long since forgotten are emerging as delicacies. Parts that used to be for scrap are centerpieces. Ash and hay are fashionable ingredients, and you pay handsomely to breathe flavored air. Going out to a nice dinner now often precipitates a confrontation with a fundamental question: Is that food? Anything That Moves, a behind-the-scenes look at foodie culture, is simultaneously a humorous adventure and a serious attempt to understand the implications of the way we eat. This is a universe populated by insect-eaters and blood drinkers, avant-garde chefs who make food out of roadside leaves and wood, and others who serve endangered species, pets, and Schedule I drugs-a cast of characters, in other words, who flirt with danger, taboo, and disgust in pursuit of the sublime. Behind them is an intricate network of scavengers, dealers, and pitchmen responsible for introducing rare and exotic ingredients into the marketplace and, ultimately, bringing them to the family table. Highly entertaining and deeply revelatory, Anything That Moves explores the raucous, strange, fascinatingly complex world of contemporary American food culture, and the places where the extreme is bleeding into the mainstream.

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Dwight Garner
Ms. Goodyear is…the possessor of a gentle, almost demure prose style. Today's best-known food writers tend to be noisy boys; her soothing sentences are a balm. Like the shy girl in the back of class whose occasional whispered utterances are masterpieces of marinated snark, she gets off a lot of vivid observations…Anything that Moves is an eyes-wide-open exploration of the foodie avant-garde…Ms. Goodyear is a good-natured tour guide, and she possesses a (mostly) strong stomach.
The New York Times Book Review - Thomas McNamee
Dana Goodyear writes with wit, grace and a contagious sense of humor about some of the most disgusting food you may never see fit to put in your mouth.
From the Publisher
"Food editors need people like [Dana Goodyear]. Anyone who can write so wisely and entertainingly about eating rarities is a rarity herself."—Slate

"Dana Goodyear’s new book, about being a wallflower at the American food orgy, won me over on its second page."—The New York Times

"It is precisely because I am not a foodie that I found such immense pleasure in reading Dana Goodyear's Anything That Moves: Renegade Chefs, Fearless Eaters, and the Making of a New American Food Culture. It was like reading Bruce Chatwin on Patagonia or Ryszard Kapuscinski on Ethiopia, maybe even Norman Mailer on war. I don't want to be there, but I want to have already been there."—Newsweek

"Like any good exploration of an avant-garde subculture, Goodyear populates her stories with all sorts of fascinations. . . . What Anything That Moves does better than talk about weird food is profile the obsessives who eat it. They're an esoteric group whose influence is slowly seeping into the mainstream. You won't want to adjust your dietary habits, but in a lot of ways, it's already changing."—Grantland

"Anything That Moves is frenetic and fascinating and turns the stomach."—Bloomberg Businessweek

 

“Goodyear is an extraordinary adept reporter and observer. I can’t think of another writer who could have done justice to the material. . . . Highly enjoyable and memorable journey through the brave and strange new world of avant garde cuisine.”—Boston Globe

"I don't think I've ever used the word disgusting as a compliment, but here goes. Goodyear's riveting, hilarious, disturbing, and downright disgusting new book is the perfect antidote to a Martha Stewart Thanksgiving. This journalistic thriller, set among the culinary avant-garde, is all about dangerous eating. A rose-haired tarantula spider roll. Frog fallopian tubes. And the most extreme: an unhatched chick, eaten whole. But this story isn't meant to gross you out; it's a window onto a world of chefs, purveyors, farmers, scavengers, and gonzo foodies."—Dani Shapiro, More

"Addictive, educational, and gross."—Elle

“Goodyear is a witty writer with a sly humor that makes her a genial guide to such a strange and diverse counterculture.”—Los Angeles Times

"Venturing deep into the underground foodie culture, New Yorker contributor Goodyear plunges into the world of dedicated individuals who routinely skirt the boundaries imposed by common culinary practices and tastes. . . . Goodyear’s exploration of this engrossing and morally complex topic provides a solid footing for hearty conversations."—Kirkus (starred review)

"Poet and New Yorker staff writer Goodyear is an insightful, vivid, and smart commentator on food. Here she focuses on the reinvention of food in modern America, exploring the highs, lows, and surprises of cutting-edge foodie culture."—Library Journal

"Dana Goodyear may be our finest longform food journalist. The New Yorker staff writer . . . has written for that magazine on California’s unpasteurized milk movement and Los Angeles’s underground Wolvesmouth restaurant. She does not disappoint here, in an exploration (partly culled from her New Yorker pieces) of what she calls 'the outer bounds of food culture,' which includes everything from the Las Vegas food scene (a frightening notion) to head-to-tail butchering. Anyone who writes about eating 'stinkbugs' is worth reading."—Atlantic Wire

“In Anything That Moves, Dana Goodyear takes as her subject the outer edges and extremes of American food culture, and shows us, with grace, quiet humor, and poetic precision, how closely the weird mirrors the typical. Reporting on the margins of food culture, she reveals much about the broader comedy of manners and morals in American life.”—Adam Gopnik

“Dana Goodyear is one of the most complete and authoritative voices in food journalism today. Anything That Moves so accurately describes the remaking of our modern food culture in America that I swear I can taste it. Combining serious thought and intelligent perspective with writing that is entertaining and inspiring, this is an important book and a delightfully fun read. I loved it.”—Andrew Zimmern

“Dana Goodyear takes us on a wild romp through the fringes of today’s extreme dining scene. The journey is exciting, eye-opening, a little scary at times, and always fascinating. I couldn’t put Anything that Moves down.”—Barry Estabrook, author of Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed our Most Alluring Fruit

“Finally the ‘foodie movement’ finds a voice I trust.  With a poet’s empathy and a reporter’s nose for story, Goodyear brings us the high-minded adventurers and flash hucksters who are setting the future course of American food.  This book has permanently changed my view of the plate, by revealing the politics, culture, sex, and crime that lie behind.”—Tom Mueller, New York Times- bestselling author of Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil

Kirkus Reviews
Venturing deep into the underground foodie culture, New Yorker contributor Goodyear (The Oracle of Hollywood Boulevard: Poems, 2013, etc.) plunges into the world of dedicated individuals who routinely skirt the boundaries imposed by common culinary practices and tastes. The author is no stranger to ingesting foods many would forego. During a stint in China, she ate chicken feet and consumed a seven-course meal of dog meat. When Goodyear began hanging out with extreme foodies, the type of characters who consider insects, frog fallopian tubes and horsemeat as fair game for dinner, her food boundaries expanded. A dish composed of "slippery jellyfish in sesame-oil vinaigrette, and a raw oyster, poached quail egg, and crab guts, meant to be slurped together in one viscous spoonful" provided the author with an example of the "quiver on quiver on quiver" characterizing the "convergence of the disgusting and the sublime typical of so much foodie food." Goodyear skillfully stitches together the philosophical, psychological and legal underpinnings of this emerging movement with the stories of those consumers who seek out the sometimes-bizarre foods. She explores bits of culinary history, how culture plays a role in what's acceptable to eat and the ethical lines some individuals won't cross when it comes to exotic eating. The author visited underground pop-up restaurants, which combine "the raucous dinner with random tablemates, and the self-conscious staging of an elevated social interaction," and she spent time with the chefs who routinely traverse the outer limits of America's new food landscape. One chef, irate at the amount of waste in the meat industry, believes meat eating mustn't be easy but should force people to confront their food choices. Chris Cosentino, a well-known chef among adventurous eaters, "started serving the parts Americans no longer wanted to eat: spleens and blood and sperm; lungs, lips and livers." Goodyear's exploration of this engrossing and morally complex topic provides a solid footing for hearty conversations.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781452617947
Publisher:
Tantor Media, Inc.
Publication date:
11/14/2013
Edition description:
Unabridged CD
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.10(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Food editors need people like [Dana Goodyear]. Anyone who can write so wisely and entertainingly about eating rarities is a rarity herself."—Slate

"Dana Goodyear’s new book, about being a wallflower at the American food orgy, won me over on its second page."—The New York Times

"It is precisely because I am not a foodie that I found such immense pleasure in reading Dana Goodyear's Anything That Moves: Renegade Chefs, Fearless Eaters, and the Making of a New American Food Culture. It was like reading Bruce Chatwin on Patagonia or Ryszard Kapuscinski on Ethiopia, maybe even Norman Mailer on war. I don't want to be there, but I want to have already been there."—Newsweek

"Like any good exploration of an avant-garde subculture, Goodyear populates her stories with all sorts of fascinations. . . . What Anything That Moves does better than talk about weird food is profile the obsessives who eat it. They're an esoteric group whose influence is slowly seeping into the mainstream. You won't want to adjust your dietary habits, but in a lot of ways, it's already changing."—Grantland

"Anything That Moves is frenetic and fascinating and turns the stomach."—Bloomberg Businessweek

 

“Goodyear is an extraordinary adept reporter and observer. I can’t think of another writer who could have done justice to the material. . . . Highly enjoyable and memorable journey through the brave and strange new world of avant garde cuisine.”—Boston Globe

"I don't think I've ever used the word disgusting as a compliment, but here goes. Goodyear's riveting, hilarious, disturbing, and downright disgusting new book is the perfect antidote to a Martha Stewart Thanksgiving. This journalistic thriller, set among the culinary avant-garde, is all about dangerous eating. A rose-haired tarantula spider roll. Frog fallopian tubes. And the most extreme: an unhatched chick, eaten whole. But this story isn't meant to gross you out; it's a window onto a world of chefs, purveyors, farmers, scavengers, and gonzo foodies."—Dani Shapiro, More

"Addictive, educational, and gross."—Elle

“Goodyear is a witty writer with a sly humor that makes her a genial guide to such a strange and diverse counterculture.”—Los Angeles Times

"Venturing deep into the underground foodie culture, New Yorker contributor Goodyear plunges into the world of dedicated individuals who routinely skirt the boundaries imposed by common culinary practices and tastes. . . . Goodyear’s exploration of this engrossing and morally complex topic provides a solid footing for hearty conversations."—Kirkus (starred review)

"Poet and New Yorker staff writer Goodyear is an insightful, vivid, and smart commentator on food. Here she focuses on the reinvention of food in modern America, exploring the highs, lows, and surprises of cutting-edge foodie culture."—Library Journal

"Dana Goodyear may be our finest longform food journalist. The New Yorker staff writer . . . has written for that magazine on California’s unpasteurized milk movement and Los Angeles’s underground Wolvesmouth restaurant. She does not disappoint here, in an exploration (partly culled from her New Yorker pieces) of what she calls 'the outer bounds of food culture,' which includes everything from the Las Vegas food scene (a frightening notion) to head-to-tail butchering. Anyone who writes about eating 'stinkbugs' is worth reading."—Atlantic Wire

“In Anything That Moves, Dana Goodyear takes as her subject the outer edges and extremes of American food culture, and shows us, with grace, quiet humor, and poetic precision, how closely the weird mirrors the typical. Reporting on the margins of food culture, she reveals much about the broader comedy of manners and morals in American life.”—Adam Gopnik

“Dana Goodyear is one of the most complete and authoritative voices in food journalism today. Anything That Moves so accurately describes the remaking of our modern food culture in America that I swear I can taste it. Combining serious thought and intelligent perspective with writing that is entertaining and inspiring, this is an important book and a delightfully fun read. I loved it.”—Andrew Zimmern

“Dana Goodyear takes us on a wild romp through the fringes of today’s extreme dining scene. The journey is exciting, eye-opening, a little scary at times, and always fascinating. I couldn’t put Anything that Moves down.”—Barry Estabrook, author of Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed our Most Alluring Fruit

“Finally the ‘foodie movement’ finds a voice I trust.  With a poet’s empathy and a reporter’s nose for story, Goodyear brings us the high-minded adventurers and flash hucksters who are setting the future course of American food.  This book has permanently changed my view of the plate, by revealing the politics, culture, sex, and crime that lie behind.”—Tom Mueller, New York Times-bestselling author of Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil

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Meet the Author

Dana Goodyear is a staff writer for The New Yorker. She teaches at the University of Southern California.

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