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Simple Cooking

4.39  ·  Rating details ·  118 ratings  ·  7 reviews
John Thorne's classic first collection is filled with straightforward eating, home cooking, vigorous opinions, and the gracefully intelligent writing that makes him a cult favorite of people who like to think about food. ...more
Paperback, 324 pages
Published November 16th 1996 by North Point Press (first published 1987)
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Average rating 4.39  · 
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Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
...a bowl of olives, a carafe of green oil, some peasant bread, salt. And, of course, some of the most scandalous conversation in Europe...May we all have the chance to dine so well.

there is hardly a single cookbook in existence in which the author encourages us to share in the muddles and mistakes...that shapes the experience of the real cook

cocoa is a morning drink for children - except on that rare morning when you yourself have time to linger...as you sit, lazy, quilt-wrapped, in the easy ch
Jan 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food, nonfiction
Oh, I loved this book. Before finishing it I made the best oatmeal of my life from the porridge chapter and one large Breton fart, from one of the Kitchen Diaries chapters (winter, I believe). I can't wait to try more.

I especially enjoyed the introduction on recipe comparison, and other chapters on hot chocolate, porridge, corn cakes, tians, picnics, loving to cook, and intimate cuisine.

Why had I not read this sooner?!
Upon reading the "No-Name Sugar Pie" recipe on page eight, I immediately invented six new tarts. Magic. ...more
Jul 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book had me salivating through the author's descriptions. ...more
Kathleen Cooper
Dec 22, 2009 rated it it was amazing
John's an opinionated guy, but I like a cook who argues with the status quo. I love his curmudgeonly point of view and the fine writing. He also makes a killer mac and cheese ...more
Jul 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Beautifully written and delicious. I recommend you not read it before bed (I always had to have a snack!) but if you like to read about food this is not to be missed.

Daniel Wolff
Jun 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
The best of all food writer's best book on food. ...more
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“The most popular Mediterranean tomato salad, found from Spain to Turkey, is a combination of roughly cut chunks of tomato tossed in a bowl with small pieces of sweet onion (a red salad onion will do nicely, although a specialty onion like the Vidalia is a special treat here), dressed with a good fruity olive oil and some freshly squeezed lemon (or lime) juice, and that grinding of pepper. This, too, should be put aside for an hour or so to let the flavors mingle … and salted only at the last moment.” 0 likes
“when industrial genius introduced a commercial baking powder just before the Civil War, America—and especially rural America—went biscuit mad. At last, fresh, hot-from-the-oven bread could be set on the breakfast or dinner table without the delicate, time-consuming processes required by salt- and yeast-raised breads. And at some point late last century, “shortcake” just came to mean the richest-tasting biscuit possible. Echoes of old-time biscuit-making ring loudest in Southern cooking, which has proven most resistant to change. Beaten biscuits, buttermilk biscuits, soda biscuits … mention these to a Southerner raised in time for World War II and you will stimulate memories of a whole cuisine—biscuits for breakfast with butter and cane molasses, with pork drippings or red-eye gravy, or just tucked cold in the pocket for a between-meal snack.” 0 likes
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