Comforting Food by Judith Olney - 1979 First Edition
Comfort food can best be described as those providing an extraordinary sense of well-being, dishes that are solacing, consoling, snug if you will. Judith Olney
If there was one cook in the 20th century who prepared food with her head, her heart, and her senses equally it is Judith Olney. Cerebral, intuitive and ever present of the underlying power that food brings to a table, a party or an appetite, Judith's cookbooks are always packed full of interesting stories and interesting recipes that add an extra dose of romance to the whole affair of cooking and eating.
The sister-in-law of famous French foodie Richard Olney (1927-1999), Judith trained in catering in London, taught cooking classes in her native North Carolina and also spent endless hours in the kitchen alongside Richard in his house in France where the two of them celebrated the simple art of cooking good fresh food with good fresh ingredients.
In 1978, Judith delighted the culinary community with her first book Summer Food, which featured light, fresh meals put together primarily with ingredients gathered from the garden. A year later, she published this book, Comforting Food, tackling the antithesis of those airy summer meals with foods that were heavier, warmer in temperature, more substantial and more evocative of a wonderful memory or two. Could you call them fall and winter foods? Absolutely. But there is year-round appeal to many as well, depending on your emotional state and what sounds good to you when.
"Foster contentment and well-being. Charm the eaters, willing the occasion well and fiercely into their very minds and being, and then repeat the glad ritual again and then again, for if one would establish confluence with the past, there is no better way to do it than to say, tonight we eat what I ate as a child, what my father's father ate, and his father before him, for in such a way are ancient bonds maintained and new links forged for the future." Those are Judith's thoughts from the opening chapter of Comforting Food - words that set the tone for the types of recipes and experiences about to come.
Leaning heavily on international cuisine, heirloom foods and the art of presentation, Judith's recipes here are ones inspired by a range of different cultures. Interesting ones include Sole in the Manner of the Mariner's Wife, Chicken in Chicken with Lemon and Caper Sauce, Turnip and Potato Pancakes, Apple Fritter Rings, Frangipane Tart, Kneppes, English Milk Soup, Saffron Soup with Bread and Shallots, Broth with Bright Vegetable Balls, Ropey Pie, Maize Custards with Mushroom Puree, Ali-Bab's Date Pudding with Almond Cream, Cinnamon and Honey Cake .... oh the recipes go on and on, one more delicious sounding than the next.
Mixed in are interesting stories and anecdotes about many of the recipes and where they came from or how they might be presented at table. Most of it inspires further curiosity, further inspiration, further conversation. All in an effort to make a memorable meal stick, so that years from now when someone asks you what your favorite comfort food is, you'll have many to choose from.
- 1979 First Edition
- 340 pages
- Includes original dust jacket
In lovely vintage condition. This cookbook is clean and bright throughout with no cooking spots or stains. The dust jacket contains some small rips along the top edge but has been reinforced on the inside with archival paper to stop further damage. The spine is tight and all pages are intact.
Measures 8.5" inches (length) x 6.25" inches (width) x 1.5" inches (depth) and weighs 1.6lbs