This week's memes, Fun Monday and now Teaser Tuesday, both happen to be about a favorite topic--food and cooking. Yesterday I posted about my love affair with pasta. Today, the book I'm sharing for Teaser Tuesday is about a very special cooking school and what a small group of students learned about themselves while learning to cook.
Teaser Tuesday is a book sharing meme hosted by Mz. B over at Should be Reading . All readers are welcome to play. Here are the rules: open your current read to a random page; share two "teaser" sentences from that page; give the title, author, and a brief synopsis (if you like) of your book; post your link in the comments on Mz B's webpage; and try to comment on other players' selections.
The School of Essential Ingredients
by Erica Bauermeister
"The first question people always ask me is, 'What are the essential ingredients?'" Lillian paused and smiled. "I might as well tell you, there isn't a list and I never had one." p. 43
Synopsis: Once a month on Monday nights eight students met at a restaurant called Lillian's. On the surface they gathered together to learn to cook from Lillian, the restaurant owner. However, their motivations for joining the class were all different: Claire, a young mother, needed to recapture the person lost to motherhood; Chloe needed to improve her cooking skills to find work and regain self respect;Tom was rejoining life after losing his beautiful wife to cancer; Isabelle was trying to hang on to reality as she dealt with beginning dementia; Carl and Helen were mending a marriage; Ian the computer geek needed to learn to live more instinctively; Antonia was an Italian transplant looking for community.
So, on Monday night the class worked together to make simple, delicious food--omelet, cake, crabs, pasta--and, at the same time, learn some valuable life lessons. I liked the way the author organized the book. Each student, and Lillian, had a chapter with his or her own background story. Each chapter was illustrated with some simple drawings of a food, herb, or flower that was especially significant to that student. I dabble a bit with drawing and watercolors, so here are my versions of the illustrations:
"A delicate, meltingly lovely hymn to food and friendship."
Maria de los Santos, author of Love Walked In