In thirty years of writing about food and cooking, people have so often asked me how I became a food writer. A few weeks ago I was invited by my friend Carol Durst-Wertheim to talk about cooking the Italian harvest to the Pleasantville Garden Club in that bucolic village in Westchester County, NY. A few days later, Carol interviewed me on PCTV, Pleasantville’s hometown television station, about how I found my way to food writing. It was the kind of talk you’d have with a neighbor over a cup of tea at your kitchen table. How I merged a predilection for art, a drive for politics, and a passion for food, crafting fourteen cookbooks to date, was the subject of our chat. If you’d like to hear a bit about my story, pull up a chair.
It all began in my mid-20s when I cooked for paying guests on the galley of a large sailing ketch.
No, actually, it began in my early 20s when I was a graduate student in Edinburgh, scouring Scotland for something good to eat besides mutton pies, only to return to my railroad flat kitchen and cook the Italian food of my childhood.
But no, come to think of it, it started much earlier than that…. It started when I was born, hungry. Well, if you’ve ever wondered how a person might become a food writer, here’s the video of my appearance on PCTV, which is my story, in a very small nutshell.