Give a Girl a Knife

James Beard Award-winning cookbook author Amy Thielen (The New Midwestern Table) turns her focus inward in Give a Girl a Knife. It is the recipe of her life in small-town Minnesota with a close-knit family whose foundation eventually cracked, and a romance that prompted her to move to a cabin in the woods with no running water or electricity, where she grew what she cooked.

Her burgeoning joy in cooking led her to attend culinary school in New York City, where she spent the next seven years in kitchens working under world-renowned chefs in restaurants that catered lunches for U.S. presidents and sold bottles of wine priced in the tens of thousands. At first, she loved it: "Time in the kitchen was like a loophole, a bubble, a cure. Once I found it, I crawled inside and told myself I never wanted to leave." Yet Thielen soon longed for farm food and pioneer cooking, for the place her roots felt deepest, with its legacy of potato salads, pickles and butter on everything.

Thielen's writing is at once culinary and literary; she refers to her tone in the kitchen as "not-very-Minnesota-nice blunt," but on the page, her style is measured and sincere. She writes thoughtfully on being a woman in a mostly male profession, and with love for the women in her life who nurtured her cooking and didn't overprotect her. Their approach, Thielen sums up, was "You give a girl a knife; that's just what you do." --Katie Weed, freelance writer and reviewer

Powered by: Xtenit