Author Molly O'Neill writes:
"One Big Table is the nation’s community cookbook, the result of my journey of more than 500,000 miles across the U.S.—during which I conducted over 5,000 oral history–style interviews and consumed untold calories—to discover why we eat what we eat."
This is no mere cookbook - this is a nation's autobiography with recipes.
With over 800 pages offering personal stories, recipes and photos, it is one of the most moving cookbooks you'll ever own. Just think - you'll begin to tell these people's stories as you make and serve their dishes. And then your guests will tell those stories and so on...
Because this is a book focused on the U.S., it is a veritable bible of different cultures and the way they eat.
It includes recipes from home cooks, farmers, fishermen, pit-masters and even famous chefs that you may know. I know I saw Daniel Boulud in there somewhere...
And the recipes, my God, the recipes - Mavis Lowe's West Indian Pumpkin Soup, Jamie Pagana's Rich & Herby Cornbread, Sicoutris Family's Greek Orzo Salad, Rachele's Haitian Shad in Green Peppercorn Sauce, Thomas Jefferson's Chicken Fricassee, Mill Pond Plantation's Beer and Bacon Quail and well, there's 600 recipes in the book, so I can't list them all (but I'd like to).
I think aside from being introduced to so many amazing people, ingredients and dishes, the part that gets me the most is that I have been handed down hundreds of people's tried-and-true family recipes.
And for a girl that doesn't have an extended family, it makes me feel like I've just found the very best one of all time.
Buy your copy of One Big Table: A Portrait of America Cooking now.