Kitchen Yarns: Notes on Life, Love, and Food

Kitchen Yarns: Notes on Life, Love, and Food

by Ann Hood


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In this warm collection of personal essays and recipes, best-selling author Ann Hood nourishes both our bodies and our souls.

From her Italian American childhood through singlehood, raising and feeding a growing family, divorce, and a new marriage to food writer Michael Ruhlman, Ann Hood has long appreciated the power of a good meal. Growing up, she tasted love in her grandmother’s tomato sauce and dreamed of her mother’s special-occasion Fancy Lady Sandwiches. Later, the kitchen became the heart of Hood’s own home. She cooked pork roast to warm her first apartment, used two cups of dried basil for her first attempt at making pesto, taught her children how to make their favorite potatoes, found hope in her daughter’s omelet after a divorce, and fell in love again—with both her husband and his foolproof chicken stock.

Hood tracks her lifelong journey in the kitchen with twenty-seven heartfelt essays, each accompanied by a recipe (or a few). In “Carbonara Quest,” searching for the perfect spaghetti helped her cope with lonely nights as a flight attendant. In the award-winning essay “The Golden Silver Palate,” she recounts the history of her fail-safe dinner party recipe for Chicken Marbella—and how it did fail her when she was falling in love. Hood’s simple, comforting recipes also include her mother’s famous meatballs, hearty Italian Beef Stew, classic Indiana Fried Chicken, the perfect grilled cheese, and a deliciously summery peach pie.

With Hood’s signature humor and tenderness, Kitchen Yarns spills tales of loss and starting from scratch, family love and feasts with friends, and how the perfect meal is one that tastes like home.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393249507
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 12/04/2018
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 1,258,457
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Ann Hood is the author of eight previous books, including the best-selling memoir Comfort: A Journey Through Grief and best-selling novels The Book That Matters Most and The Knitting Circle. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island.

Table of Contents

Introduction xiii

The Golden Silver Palate 1

Recipe: Chicken Marbella 7

The Best Fried Chicken 11

Recipe: Indiana Fried Chicken 18

Pie Lady 21

Recipe: Gogo's Lemon Meringue Pie 26

Gogo's Meatballs 28

Recipe: Gogo's Meatballs 30

Love, Lunch, and Meatball Grinders 33

Recipe: Gogo's Meatball Grinders 36

Fancy Food 38

Recipe: Fancy-Lady Sandwiches 44

Recipe: Gogo's Chicken Salad 45

Recipe: Gogo's Ham Salad 46

Recipe: Glamourous Curried Chicken Salad 47

Recipe: Chicken Salad Veronique 48

Confessions of a Marsha Jordan Girl 50

Recipe: Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins 57

My Father's Pantry 59

Recipe: Baked Macaroni à la Poops 67

Carbonara Quest 70

Recipe: My Perfect Spaghetti Carbonara 74

Recipe: Pasta Amatriciana 77

Sausage on Wheels 79

Recipe: Gloria and Hood's Sausage and Peppers 82

Dinner for One 84

Recipe: Pork Roast with Garlic 90

Recipe: NoHo Pork Enchiladas 91

Recipe: NoHo Chicken Enchiladas 93

Party Like It's 1959 95

Recipe: Michael's Whiskey Sours 101

Recipe: Dinner-Party Cherries Jubilee 103

Soft Food 104

Recipe: French Scrambled Eggs 109

Recipe: Never-Fail Soufflé 111

Recipe: Central Mexican Guacamole 114

One Potato, Two 116

Recipe: Sam's Potatoes 120

Recipe: Grace's Cheesy Potatoes 121

Allure 123

Recipe: Mary's Peach Pie 127

How to Butcher a Pig 129

Recipe: Matt Gennuso's Cassoulet 134

Risi e Bisi 138

Recipe: Annabelle's Risi e Bisi 143

Five Ways of Looking at the Tomato 145

Recipe: Gogo's Sauce 151

Recipe: Matt's Pasta with Tomatoes and Brie 153

Recipe: Better Than a Restaurant Caprese Salad 154

Recipe: Jill's Tenderloin and Roasted Tomatoes 156

Recipe: Kirsty Work's Bloody Mary Tomatoes 158

How to Smoke Salmon 159

Recipe: Smoked Salmon Inspired by Mark and Heather 164

The Summer of Omelets 166

Recipe: The Perfect Omelet 170

IKEA Life 172

Recipe: Gogo's Swedish Meatballs with IKEA Gravy 182

How to Cook Fish When You Really, Really Do Not Like Fish 185

Recipe: Cousin Chippy's Swordfish Oreganato 188

Recipe: Green Herb Sauce 190

Three Potato 192

Recipe: Michael's Baked Potatoes 195

With Thanks to the Chicken 197

Recipe: My Roast Chicken 201

Recipe: Michael's Overnight Chicken Stock 202

Recipe: Tortellini en Brodo 203

Let Us Now Praise the English Muffin 204

Recipe: Italian Beef Stew 207

Comfort Food II 210

Recipe: Perfect Instant Ramen 214

Recipe: Perfect Grilled Cheese 215

Tomato Pie 217

Recipe: Laurie Colwin's Tomato Pie 227

Acknowledgments 231

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