One Big Table
One Big Table By Molly O'Neill, Simon & Schuster, 2010. Hardcover. $50; 864 pages
Most recipes in this opus are named after a single person from a singular place: Meryam's Preserved Lemons (Astoria, N.Y.); William Fiorino's Modiga Steak with Peppermint Sauce (St. Louis). The book is deeply impressive, an ode to heirloom recipes and the passing of food traditions across cultural boundaries. Replete with tidbits (concerning the origin of the doughnut hole, for example), the book is packed with nostalgia and history but reads as a testament to our culinary future. We've come this far, O'Neill seems to say: Stay tuned!
GIVE THIS TO: Anyone hungry for food history and folkways. —Sidney Fry