Thursday, April 12, 2012

At Home on the Range by Elizabeth Gilbert


While perusing McSweeney's website I came across At Home on the Range, which comes out next week. At Home on the Range is a decades-old cookbook written by Elizabeth Gilbert's grandmother (yes, that Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love fame). Here' McSweeney's description of the book:

"Recently, while moving into a new house, Elizabeth Gilbert unpacked some boxes of family books that had been sitting in her mother's attic for decades. She discovered a book called At Home on the Range (or, How to Make Friends with Your Stove) by Gilbert's great-grandmother, Margaret Yardley Potter, and soon found that she had stumbled upon a book far ahead of its time. In her workaday cookbook, Potter espoused the importance of farmer's markets and ethnic food (Italian, Jewish, and German), derided preservatives and culinary shortcuts, and generally celebrated new epicurean adventures. Potter takes car trips out to Pennsylvania Dutch country to eat pickles and pork. She travels to the eastern shore of Maryland, where she learns to catch and prepare eels so delicious they must be "devoured in a silence almost devout." Part scholar, part crusader, Potter reveals the source of Gilbert’s love of food, and her warm, infectious prose."

It sounds like an interesting book, and I think it's promising that McSweeney's has chosen to publish it. if it were any other publisher, I would suspect that it as just another opportunity to capitalize on Gilbert's name. Plus, proceeds from the book benefit two non-profit organizations, ScholarMatch and 826 National.

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