The first book I checked out of the Katie Wheeler Library in Irvine is by Lara Vapnyar. Ironically, I wasn't looking for a food-related find.
Vapnyar's collection of short stories is excellent chick lit - with a side of borscht. Published this year, it has an easygoing reading style. There are relationships, emotions, and the recurring theme of what I love most. I read one story a night before bedtime.
Even though the author wrote about characters with Russian backgrounds, I felt as though you could interchange their nationalities and keep the continuity. It's like when I watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Just insert Asian or Italian or whatever fits best into the title.
The final chapter is dedicated to sharing recipes based on each story. I'm excited to try out the turkey meatball recipe next week. Here's the excerpt:
"Surprisingly, this recipe came not from a seasoned grandma but from a single father who didn't know how to cook and who learned to cook meatballs so he could feed his daughter. This is his recipe: (you'll have to check out the book for the actual recipe!)
I tried it and it worked. The meatballs came out crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside".
I forgot how much fun it is to read something besides a periodical.