The Art of Eating: 50th Anniversary Edition


"Mary Frances [Fisher] has the extraordinary ability to make the ordinary seem rich and wonderful. Her dignity comes from her absolute insistence on appreciating life as it comes to her."

"How wonderful to have here in my hands the essence of M.F.K. Fisher, whose wit and fulsome opinions on food and those who produce it, comment upon it, and consume it are as apt today as they were ...

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Paperback (50th Anniversary Edition)
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The Art of Eating

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"Mary Frances [Fisher] has the extraordinary ability to make the ordinary seem rich and wonderful. Her dignity comes from her absolute insistence on appreciating life as it comes to her."

"How wonderful to have here in my hands the essence of M.F.K. Fisher, whose wit and fulsome opinions on food and those who produce it, comment upon it, and consume it are as apt today as they were several decades ago, when she composed them. Why did she choose food and hunger she was asked, and she replied, 'When I write about hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth, and the love of it . . . and then the warmth and richness and fine reality of hunger satisfied.' This is the stuff we need to hear, and to hear again and again."

"This comprehensive volume should be required reading for every cook. It defines in a sensual and beautiful way the vital relationship between food and culture."

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

This 50th anniversary paperback reprint contains what Julia Child referred to as "the essence of M.F.K. Fisher." Fisher (1908-1992) was one of this country's earliest food writers; her eloquent yet unostentatious prose has charmed generations. The 784-page collection brings together five works originally published under separate titles: "Serve it Forth," "Consider the Oyster," "How to Cook a Wolf," "The Gastronomical Me" and "An Alphabet for Gourmets." There are also recipes scattered throughout. (Washington Post, April 28, 2004)
Library Journal
This volume combines five of Fisher's popular cooking titles (Serve It Forth, Consider the Oyster, How To Cook a Wolf, The Gastronomical Me, and An Alphabet for Gourmets) for one low price. Look for Joan Reardon's Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M.F.K Fisher, from North Point: Farrar in October. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764542619
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 2/23/2004
  • Edition description: 50th Anniversary Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 784
  • Sales rank: 157,738
  • Product dimensions: 6.13 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 2.05 (d)

Meet the Author

Culinary historian, cookbook author, and biographer Joan Reardon is the author of M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters: Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table, M.F.K. Fisher Among the Pots and Pans, Poet of the Appetites: The Lives and Loves of M.F.K. Fisher, and Oysters: a Culinary Celebration. Reardon, who has a PhD in English literature, won an IACP Award for culinary writing, publishes and edits a quarterly newsletter for Les Dames d’Escoffier Chicago, and serves on the advisory board of Gastronomica magazine.

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Table of Contents

The Art of Eating: In Celebration
Thoughts About M. F. K. Fisher and Her Work
One More Time
Serve It Forth
To Begin 5
When a Man Is Small 7
Greek Honey and the Hon-Zo 12
The Curious Nose 17
Let the Sky Rain Potatoes 22
Borderland 26
Garum 29
Fifty Million Snails 34
Meals for Me 40
Dark Ages and the Men of God 45
I Arise Resigned 47
In Sinistra Parte, Johannus Baptista 52
Pity the Blind in Palate 57
A Pigges Pettie Toes 60
The Standing and the Waiting 64
Catherine's Lonesome Cooks 75
Two Birds Without a Branch 80
The Pale Yellow Glove 83
The Brothers 89
Set-piece for a Fishing Party 91
On Dining Alone ä
Sing of Dinner in a Dish 100
Shell-Shock and Richard the Third 107
The Social Status of a Vegetable 111
Cesar 116
To End 121
Consider The Oyster
Love and Death Among the Molluscs 125
A Supper to Sleep On 129
R is for Oyster 135
The Well-dressed Oyster 139
Take 300 Clean Oysters 144
A Lusty Bit of Nourishment 146
Pearls Are Not Good to Eat 160
Those Were Happy Days 166
Soup of the Evening, Beautiful Soup 170
Love Was the Pearl 175
My Country, 'Tis of Thee 178
As Luscious as Locusts 181
How To Cook A Wolf
Introduction to Revised edition 187
How to Be Sage Without Hemlock 189
How to Catch the Wolf 195
How to Distribute Your Virtue 198
How to Boil Water 207
How to Greet the Spring 223
How Not to Boil an Egg 229
How to Keep Alive 240
How to Rise Up Like New Bread 245
How to Be Cheerful Though Starving 252
How to Carve the Wolf 257
How to Make a Pigeon Cry 277
How to Pray for Peace 286
How to Be Content with a Vegetable Love 296
How to Make a Great Show 300
How to Have a Sleek Pelt 305
How to Comfort Sorrow 310
How to Be a Wise Man 320
How to Lure the Wolf 323
How to Drink to the Wolf 329
How Not to Be an Earthworm 335
How to Practice True Economy 343
Conclusion 350
The Gastronomical Me
Foreword 353
The Measure of My Powers 354
A Thing Shared 356
The Measure of My Powers 359
The Measure of My Powers 364
The First Oyster 368
The Measure of My Powers 378
The Measure of My Powers 382
Sea Change 385
The Measure of My Powers 393
To Feed Such Hunger 408
The Measure of My Powers 419
Noble and Enough 427
The Measure of My Powers 435
The Measure of My Powers 446
Sea Change 455
Sea Change 463
Sea Change 469
Define This Word 474
The Measure of My Powers 483
Once I Dreamed 501
I Remember Three Restaurants 502
Sea Change 510
The Lemming to the Sea 518
The Flaw 526
The Measure of My Powers 536
Feminine Ending 552
An Alphabet For Gourmets
Foreword 575
A is for dining Alone 577
B is for Bachelors 584
C is for Cautious 589
D is for Dining out 594
E is for Exquisite 600
F is for Family 605
G is for Gluttony 613
H is for Happy 618
I is for Innocence 623
J is for Juvenile dining 628
K is for Kosher 634
L is for Literature 640
M is for Monastic 645
N is for Nautical 650
O is for Ostentation 658
P is for Peas 663
Q is for Quantity 670
R is for Romantic 678
S is for Sad 682
T is for Turbot 687
U is for Universal 693
V is for Venality 701
W is for Wanton 706
X is for Xanthippe 713
Y is for Yak 720
Z is for Zakuski 727
From A to Z: The Perfect Dinner 736
Index of Recipes 745
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2006

    Still outstanding after all these years

    Eloquent, simple language that goes right to the heart of the matter, your appetite. I've read everything by her and the first in this series, Serve It Forth, her first book ever, is still the very best.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2005

    Witty, erudite, food for the soul

    Fisher is simply brilliant. This collection of essays overflows with taste, charm and wit, yet is never overbearing or arch. She crosses the millenia and continents with a suave ease that astonishes. Each piece is a delight.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2012

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