Nov 6, 2013

bread and wine and paris in love

Well, yesterday was rainy in Charleston, so we're going to give her one last shot today to show us her best side.  In the meantime, what's better on a rainy day than a few good books?  I haven't been reading quite as much during this trip as I expected I would.  Mostly I think, because I'm afraid that I won't be fully embracing my own experiences if I'm getting lost in someone else's.  But still, I've gotten some reading in on the long days of motoring down the ICW or at night when it gets dark so ridiculously early.


One of the books I've finished recently was Shauna Niequist's Bread and Wine.  I was so excited to have won this book from Kelsea's giveaway back in August.  With all the chaos going on then, I had to put off reading it for a little while.  I've confessed before that I've never been quite comfortable in the kitchen, and I haven't yet mastered the arts of a natural hostess.  Reading Bread and Wine, a combination of recipes and the stories and memories behind them,  really left me wanting to try harder at not trying so hard.  Shauna Niequist has a desire to love people through food and through welcoming them to her table, and I love when she says, "I'm not talking about cooking as performance, or entertaining as a complicated choreography of competition and showing off.  I'm talking about feeding someone with honesty and intimacy and love, about making your home a place where people are fiercely protected, even if just for a few hours, from the crush and cruelty of the day."

The other book that I've finished recently was Paris in Love by Eloisa James.  With my newly developed love for adventure, I've been drawn more to travel memoirs of late.  This book reads like a personal journal; little bits and snippets from daily life of a year spent in Paris.  Mixed among the descriptions of chic Parisian women and delectable treats at French restaurants, are hilarious things that her kids said, and mistakes, mishaps, and disappointments, too.  I've never been to Paris, so you can imagine that I have a pretty romantic notion of it.  I appreciated the reality check of seeing it through someone else's memoirs.  It's not the kind of book that I wanted to read in one sitting, but I would pick it up and read a few passages whenever I wanted to escape to Paris for just a little while.

Oddly enough, both books left me with a strong desire to learn to make the perfect risotto.  Random coincidence?  I've never even attempted risotto before, and now I'm both intimidated and intrigued by the idea.

What good books have you read lately?  Have you read either of these? Also... have you mastered risotto?

15 comments:

  1. Ohh both of those books sound good. I will have to check them out! My boyfriend's sister makes a really delicious risotto and she said it's really not too hard. I can pass along her receipe if you'd like :)

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  2. I haven't read either but they both sound perfect! I will need to look into getting them.

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  3. I'm working on the Happiness Project, it's a great book but it gives me so much to think about I have to set it aside just to take it all in.

    I have mastered cooking anything but breakfast, at least I got the most important meal of the day down.

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  4. I love the idea of a book with recipes and the stories behind them. Right now I'm reading the hare with the amber eyes. And after that I'll read a fault in ours stars.

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    1. I've been seeing A Fault in Our Stars around a lot lately. I'll have to look into that one!

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  5. I love books that read like a personal journal - I'm looking for a new read, so I'll have to give Paris a try!

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  6. Make the risotto!! I've made this champagne one a few times and its incredible.

    http://valsocal.blogspot.com/2011/02/champagne-risotto.html

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  7. I just finished Gone Girl and I really liked it. And now it looks like I've got two new books to add to my list! They both sound great!

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  8. Awesome book recos! Can't wait to check them out.
    You MUST MUST MUST read Still Alice!!

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  9. You should definitely read "The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle," by Avi. It's young adult fiction. Set on a boat (so perfect for your current adventure). And a strong female lead character, which I love.

    Also, I love risotto and this one: http://www.thelondoner.me/2012/12/garlic-mushroom-cheats-risotto.html allows you to cheat a little in the preparation!

    -Amy

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    1. I'll definitely look that one up! It sounds perfect! And I'm such a sucker for YA fiction. :)
      Thanks for the link! I like recipes that use the word "cheat" haha.

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  10. I have a whole book on risotto for when you get home :) It's the main reason I make so much homemade stock and freeze it!
    I've just started The Paris Wife....about Hemingway's first wife. I'm afraid it's only going to make my wanderlust worse.....

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    1. Paris seems to be turning up everywhere for me lately. It was never first on my list of dream places to visit, but it's been inching it's way up the list lately. :)

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  11. Bread and Wine is on my Christmas wish list - I can't wait to read it!

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