Sunday, March 13, 2011

The United States of Arugula

The United States of Arugula: The Sun Dried, Cold Pressed, Dark Roasted, Extra Virgin Story of the American Food RevolutionThe United States of Arugula: The Sun Dried, Cold Pressed, Dark Roasted, Extra Virgin Story of the American Food Revolution by David Kamp

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I'm struggling with the star rating on this one. I'm so on the fence about this book, I can't decide if it's a 2-star or a 4-star book (but somehow 3-stars isn't right at all). I did not finish this book - due to time constraints and wanting to move on to other books.

This book was not what I was expecting. I started reading with the expectation that the book would be about food, it was more about the people behind the food. The first section of the book is a mess of names and overlapping time lines. I had a hard time remembering who was who - with the exception of Julia Child. After that the following sections (at least as far as I read) were easy stories to follow.

Synopsis: The wickedly entertaining, hunger-inducing, behind-the-scenes story of the revolution in American food that has made exotic ingredients, celebrity chefs, rarefied cooking tools, and destination restaurants familiar aspects of our everyday lives.

Amazingly enough, just twenty years ago eating sushi was a daring novelty and many Americans had never even heard of salsa. Today, we don't bat an eye at a construction worker dipping a croissant into robust specialty coffee, city dwellers buying just-picked farmstand produce, or suburbanites stocking up on artisanal cheeses and extra virgin oils at supermarkets. The United States of Arugula is a rollicking, revealing stew of culinary innovation, food politics, and kitchen confidences chronicling how gourmet eating in America went from obscure to pervasive—and became the cultural success story of our era.

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