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The Pat Conroy Cookbook: Recipes of My Life

4.07  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,264 Ratings  ·  117 Reviews
The Pat Conroy Cookbook might be described as a gastronomical memoir. Conroy himself describes it as "my autobiography in food and meals and restaurants and countries far and near...I write of truffles in the Dordogne Valley in France, cilantro in Bangkok, catfish in Alabama, scuppernong in South Carolina, Chinese food from my years in San Francisco, and white asparagus fr ...more
MP3 Book, 0 pages
Published November 9th 2004 by Random House Audio Publishing Group (first published 2004)
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Bobbi
Jan 23, 2012 Bobbi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love whatever Pat Conroy writes and this book is no exception. If you're looking for gourmet, non-fattening recipes, this is not the book for you. The book is not chock full of recipes and the ones he includes are generally Southern food, simply prepared, and not particularly healthy. But between recipes are Pat's wonderful stories. In fact, it took me quite a long time to get through the whole book, much longer than I thought, although with his books, that's not a bad thing.

Of course he write
...more
Bonnie
Mar 08, 2015 Bonnie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes to cook!
I loved this book. If you are a fan of Conroy's this is a must read. It reads more like a memoir. Every chapter opens with a wonderful tale (he is the great storyteller) followed by recipes related to the adventure. My favoirte chapter is titled, Why Dying Down South is More Fun. I wanted to stop reading and make his recipe for Dunbar Macaroni. If you like to cook --or enjoy reading cookbooks, you will end up marking half the recipes in this book as ones to try. Conroy is a passionate about cook ...more
Jennifer
This is way more than simply a cookbook! I have been known to take this to the beach with me, for the stories as well as the recipes. Conway is a master of storytelling, and some of his stories still make me laugh out loud no matter how many times I read them! (His story about Nathalie Dupree is THE BEST. So funny!) He has tales to tell of travel and of home... stories filled with pathos, and more than a few recalling some of the best memories, however "ordinary" or extraordinary they may be, an ...more
Ann
Apr 10, 2016 Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 for enjoyment. Loved this book - just a wonderful 'read'. What a wonderful storyteller Pat Conroy is, the recipes were fun too but the main thing about this book is that a wonderful personality shone thru. Plan on buying my own copy as I think a book I'll enjoy for a long time - and yes I will try some of the recipes. Highly recommend. Just a delightful book.
Christine Ott
Mar 11, 2016 Christine Ott rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
He hates unnecessarily on cilantro and relies too heavily on mayonnaise, but otherwise this was the first cookbook I could not put down. I read it start to finish, and loved the interspersed stories.
Carol
Jul 11, 2016 Carol rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The subject of food is nearly a sacred one to me.

The first sentence of this cookbook foreshadows things to come. Pat Conroy's writing is infectiously zestful, spirited, passionate. I'm certain there are good recipes here, but I read this cookbook for the stories, for the South, for the writing, for the travelogues, for the pathos, and for the sheer joy.

His sketches of friends and mentors are delightful and satisfying:
She attracts friends like a magnet does iron filings.
My grandmother traveled
...more
Abbe
SUMMARY: chapter oneNathalie DupreeThe first actual cooking teacher who took both my money and my grief for imparting culinary secrets to me was the inimitable, unclassifiable queen of the Southern kitchen, Nathalie Dupree. Though Nathalie does not know this, she is one of the few people in my life who seems more like a fictional character than a flesh-and-blood person.When my novel Beach Music came out in 1995, I had included a couple of recipes in the book, and had tried to impart some of my l ...more
Jim
Dec 29, 2013 Jim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I've consumed almost everything from the Conroy menu, heard him speak with glee, and even experienced the rapturous excitement that came from shaking his hand, but I never thought about reading his cookbook--shunned the idea actually---until I browsed through it at the library and discovered it was much more than recipes. It essentially is a collection of memoir vignettes often tied together by Conroy's love of food and cooking, and the importance it played in his many and varied relationships. ...more
Rhonda Sue
Mar 14, 2016 Rhonda Sue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the audio version of this book in my car-which is great because I spend a lot of time driving to and from nowadays that we moved outside the city limits. I selected this audio book because I love all things food related, not because I'm a big fan of Mr. Conroy's although I did enjoy "Beach Music" many years ago. The author is the narrator and I did at times struggle hearing the words due to his low talking and/or accent issues. I found myself replaying sections as a result.

The book was qu
...more
Rhys
Jun 01, 2014 Rhys rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of cooking and Pat Conroy
All that Pat Conroy states about this book is true; but to add, this is a reference book. Conroy is in his literary form in writing this book (so try to push to one side the fact that the book contains recipes); so you are in store for true reading enjoyment.... Pull up your favorite reading chair!

I say it is a reference book because Pat is giving details into his methods of writing and insights into the periods of his life that created the stories of his books. He speaks about his parents' past
...more
David Ward
Pat Conroy Cookbook: Recipes of My Life by Pat Conroy (Doubleday 2004) (641.59). This is a cookbook in the style of my favorite cookbook of all time: The Haphazard Gourmet by Richard Gehman. In other words, this is a stand-alone narrative book with a number of recipes interspersed among the text. In this case, author Pat Conroy has included a few indispensable Southern recipes for seafood and soul food. What makes this book shine for me, however, are a few startling stories of self-disclosure wh ...more
Jenny
Aug 30, 2010 Jenny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jenny by: Seamus
Shelves: cookbooks
One thing I've realized over time is that I love reading stories that have recipes mixed in. I received this book as a gift, and it sat on the shelf a long time because I didn't realize it would fit that bill! I had never heard of this guy, but reading his cookbook was an enjoyable way to learn his life story and get me curious to read "Prince of Tides" and some of his other stuff. One annoying thing was that he referred to all women he crossed paths with as "pretty;" it must be a southern thing ...more
Marilyn
Jun 22, 2013 Marilyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I took my time going thru this book, savoring the stories of Conroy's life along with the flecks of recipes throughout (like essential herbs tossed into one of my favorite comfort foods, mashed potatoes). As with many of my cookbooks and with foodie magazines, I added tiny post-its to pages with recipes I'd like to try... like I'd have time in one lifetime to make even a fraction of the tabbed recipes lurking on my cookbook shelves!

I love how Conroy writes, having read several of his novels. An
...more
Kristin
Jan 17, 2011 Kristin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Is it possible to curl up in bed...enthralled...and unable to put down...a cookbook? Oh yes. If it is The Pat Conroy Cookbook which isn't really a cookbook. It is more of a memoir about food, travel and interesting people from his life with some good recipes thrown in at the end of each chapter.

I serendipitously read this book the week after reading his book My Reading Life. How fortuitous. Even though this book was published several years before My Reading Life there are many of the same influe
...more
Elizabeth Moore
Feb 22, 2014 Elizabeth Moore rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What fun!

Great stories of Pat Conroy's life, including his travels and years abroad, his father, time at the Citadel, and just being a Southerner, combined with recipes representing those times and experiences. Conroy's cookbook resonated with me because food and cooking and eating comes to mind with thoughts of my own life experiences.

Perhaps one of my favorite chapters deals with funerals in the South, and how we bury our dead with all the comfort foods: a baked ham, macaroni and cheese, biscu
...more
Joanne
Mar 15, 2016 Joanne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How very blessed we were to have had Pat Conroy in our lives, he was my favorite author. In this lovely book, part memoir and part cookbook, Pat shared so much of his joy of cooking and love of food and the wonderful part it plays in our lives. The personal stories are really what makes this book so beautiful for me, you will want to savor each one of these. I will miss you so much, Mr. Conroy. You have made such a difference in my reading life. The Prince of Tides has fundamentally transformed ...more
Elizabeth
In spite of not being able to keep straight which wife was being described or just how many he has had, I loved the narrative sections of this book. The recipes which are for the most part standard fare, appear to be fine. The new (to me) recipes are not necessarily things that I would be racing to the kitchen to make.

Conroy's descriptions before each chapter and each recipe are wonderful. Just occasionally, I find his description of food to be somewhat lacking though. It's hard to pin it down.
...more
Barbara
Feb 16, 2015 Barbara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really loved this book partially because I'm a real fan of the author's writing and because many of the recipe's actually seem doable. I enjoy his exaggerated over the top writing style. Clearly this is a man who appreciates food, family and friends. After finishing it I was torn between wanting to throw a dinner party or taking a road trip to South Carolina.
Amy Backes
Jul 20, 2016 Amy Backes rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Only Pat Conroy could write a cookbook that would make me cry (see Chapter 9, written about his grandmother). As with any work by Conroy, it's beautifully written, funny, sad at times and enlightening. I have always loved and will always love his stories. What a wonderful author and man we lost this year. Rest easy, my friend.
ConnieK
Who cries while reading a cookbook??
I never would have bought this book on my own, but my husband is a Pat Conroy fan and picked this up while on vacation in Charleston, S.C. Am I ever glad he did. It is remarkable how Conroy weaves mesmerizing tales of his life at all ages in with the most delectable-sounding recipes. I learned quite a few cooking tips along the way and enjoyed reading every recipe even those that were far out of my feeble beginning cooking league. Loved, loved, loved this book
...more
Dee Ben
May 01, 2015 Dee Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this was an amazing book not only were the recipes right down my alley , i went down memory lane with him. my dad was a D I at P I lol we were right behind pat lol . the part where his dad is flying the plane was worth reading the book , you rock pat
Sandy
Apr 24, 2016 Sandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book with some great recipes and lots of shorts about people Conroy knew who cooked.
I just wish I lived some where so I could get fresh fish or lived in Italy to get all those wonderful ingredients he used in his recipes.
Catherine
Jan 08, 2015 Catherine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thoroughly enjoyed this funny memoir of Conroy's gastronomical exploits. Easy to read, laugh outloud funny (especially at the Georgia Bulldog's game), and I have tried several of his recipes with great success.
Joel Jones
Jun 12, 2016 Joel Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful chapters on the Pat Conroy's life as a cook and an eater. Great stories, great recipes. If you read it at bed time you will want to go to the fridge and have a snack. Pat Conroy is missed.
Gloria
Aug 20, 2013 Gloria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookery
Do you love to "read" cookbooks? It is one of my favorite pasttimes and here, Pat Conroy, esteemed Southern author, has written a cookbook that is more or less a compilation of essays where food is included. Conroy writes of his dysfunctional family, various marriages, living abroad, his work, early life, and more. Always friendly in tone, he also includes observations about families, the American lifestyle, the South and its hospitality, and more. The recipes are "gourmet" but not hard necessar ...more
Charlene
May 01, 2011 Charlene rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The subtitle for this is "Recipes and Stories of My Life" but it should be reversed. The stories are wonderful; Pat Conroy is at his best when talking about himself, I think. I only copied one recipe to possibly try but I have several book titles that he mentions that I now want to read and I found a quote in the book that I think sums up his fiction: "As an adult, I found myself so haunted by my parents and my geography that I spent a lifetime trying to write my out of an addiction to their mem ...more
Judith Kerr
Mar 16, 2016 Judith Kerr rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! it is really a biography of a great writer. There were some recipes, but each had a story that made it special. Having read some of his books before, now I will make sure to have read them all.
Mary
Sep 02, 2009 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you enjoy Pat Conroy this book is a must read. He shares his own life stories in a very special way. He is so humble about his writing talents and so proud of his cooking talents. He tells stories about his kids and wives and parents and friends in a way that makes you feel you really do know these people. The man is funny, kind, generous and gifted. And, truly humble. I dream of sitting in his kitchen, watching him cook and listening to him tells stories. The man could give a weather report ...more
Amy
I read this because I love Pat Conroy (have I mentioned that?). I wasn't crazy about it because a good bit of it came across (to me at least) as kind of pompous... lots of "casual" references to things that make Conroy seem very impressed with himself. I hope it isn't that way... because I think he is an amazing writer... and I'd like to think that he would also be an amazing person. There are parts -- the cookbook is set up in chapters that begin with a personal story/ history -- that seem very ...more
DebrA
Aug 27, 2015 DebrA rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book, but I also love to cook. Follow Pat Conroy through his life and travels, the people he meets and the dishes he prepares.
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Pat Conroy (1945 - 2016) was the New York Times bestselling author of two memoirs and seven novels, including The Prince of Tides, The Great Santini, and The Lords of Discipline. Born the eldest of seven children in a rigidly disciplined military household, he attended the Citadel, the military college of South Carolina. He briefly became a schoolteacher (which he chronicled in his memoir The Wate ...more
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“Because our nation is stupid and Hollywood is coarse, there is no one to tell us of the deep and extraordinary beauty of older women. I now see them all around me and am filled with a fierce joy that one of them has come to live in my house.” 3 likes
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