On freezing cold, snowy days, we want to do two things: Cook warm, delicious things to eat, and curl up with a good book. So why not curl up with a great book about cooking?
by Banana Yoshimoto
This classic, wonderful story about cooking juxtaposes two tales about mothers, transsexuality, kitchens, love, tragedy, and the terms they all come to in the minds of a pair of free-spirited young women in contemporary Japan.
by Diana Abu-Jaber
Thirty-nine-year-old Sitine, never married, lives with a devoted Iraqi-immigrnt uncle and an adoring dog named King Babar. She works as a chef in a Lebanese restaurant, her passions aroused only by the preparation of food–until an unbearably handsome Arabic literature professor starts dropping by for a little home cooking. Falling in love brings Sirene’s whole heart to a boil–stirring up memories of her parents and questions about her identity as an Arab American.
The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
by Aimee Bender
On the eve of her ninth birthday, Rose bites into her mother’s homemade lemon-chocolate cake and discovers she has a magical gift: she can taste her mother’s emotions in the cake. Suddenly, and for the rest of her life, food becomes a peril and a threat to Rose. Yet as she grows up, Rose learns to harness her gift and becomes aware that there are secrets even her taste buds cannot discern.
Like Water for Chocolate
by Laura Esquivel
On the De la Garza ranch, Mama Elena chops onions at the kitchen table in her final days of pregnancy. While still in her mother’s womb, her daughter to be weeps so violently she causes an early labor, and little Tita slips out amid the spices and fixings for noodle soup. This early encounter with food soon becomes a way of life, and Tita grows up to be a master chef.
by Sarah Addison Allen
The women of the Waverley family are heirs to an unusual legacy, one that grows in a fenced plot behind their home. There, an apple tree bearing fruit of magical properties looms over a garden filled with herbs and edible flowers that possess the power to affect in curious ways anyone who eats them.
Hope was Here
by Joan Bauer
When sixteen-year-old Hope and the aunt who has raised her move from Brooklyn to Mulhoney, Wisconsin, to work as waitress and cook in the Welcome Stairways diner, they become involved with the diner owner’s political campaign to oust the town’s corrupt mayor.
by Joanne Harris
A young widow opens a chocolate shop in a French village, transforming its normally austere inhabitants into unabashed sensualists. The event coincides with Lent, and the villagers’ rejection of traditional self-denial angers the parish priest, who declares war.
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle-Stop Cafe
by Fannie Flagg
A folksy, funny and endearing story of life in a small town in Alabama in the Depression and in the 1980s, interrupted by a strange murder and a still stranger trial.