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Mark Kurlansky: Choice Cuts | by several_bees
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Mark Kurlansky: Choice Cuts

So, this is a selection of food writing from the Greeks onward, divided into themed sections: meat, truffles, chocolate, bugs, Americans, etc. There's a lot of really good stuff, both from determined food writers (lots of nice MFK Fisher in particular) and from writers who happen to deal with food occasionally (Orwell, Auden, Dumas). Kurlansky's chosen 450 pages of interesting writing, and provided enough of each writer or work that the extracts feel satisfying, but not enough for it to get dull.

 

That said, he does begin with a slightly alienating lascivious tone: starting off the very first line of his introduction by declaring that food is "like sex", then quickly launching into a chapter on food and sex in which he assures the reader that MFK Fisher was very pretty and quoting A. J. Liebling's claim that women are in some respects like dishes in a restaurant (apparently they never provide quite everything you want). This all calms down once he gets off the sex and onto automats and goose fat.

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Taken on February 23, 2007