A Homemade Life

In her blog-style book, Molly Wizenberg does an astounding job of meshing her personal story with more content-heavy recipes. In honor of it, I am going to try to do the same – at least just this once.

A Homemade Life cover

I saved up my last read, This Book is Overdue, for the plane ride to California. I didn’t even open it the night before to preview the first paragraph because I knew that the first would lead to the second and so on and so forth. Despite this precaution, however, I gobbled it up within a matter of hours and was left book-less for most of a plane ride and a five day vacation. Thankfully, my in-laws to-be are a family of readers and they scoured the muddled library at the beach house for a book that would meet my non-fiction requirements. It turns out that A Homemade Life is a perfect book to read by the ocean and to take to a day of wedding-planning. It is certainly light, part memoir and part cook-book, but, as opposed to a lot of the non-fiction I’ve read so far, Molly can write. It is an easy book to pick up in the back of a car driving down the coast and to relax with after planning at least a quarter of your wedding in one day.

I brought a print-out of my brides maid’s dress colors to the meetings, great stripes of coral, yellow, and pink, and ended up using the page as a bookmark. It seemed fitting – I was reading about how Molly planned her wedding, and here I was in the middle of planning mine. Unfortunately, all of those beautiful colors necessitated a lot of pigment on the page and when I left the book out on the porch one night (an unlikely occurrence) and it unexpectedly rained, they melted into the book like ingredients into a cake. In fact, the book now looks like how I imagine Coeur A La Creme with Raspberry Puree, one of the cake recipes, to look – a mass of white chocolate with a layer of red pigment on top.

Beverage: Unfortunately, A Homemade Life does not include beverage recipes – Molly focuses mostly on cakes, breakfasts, and salads – and I can’t really fault that choice, considering the results. Perhaps it is because I have been having a lot of it this past week (wedding preparation tends to bring it out) but, in my mind, this book goes very well with champagne.

Reminds me of… M.F.K Fisher’s Gastronomical Me. Although Molly isn’t far enough along in life to look back with the same far-reaching perspective, A Homemade Life still has the same sort of idea – a life lived through food and all of the love and hunger that contains.


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