Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Bon Appetempt: A Coming-of-Age Story (with Recipes!)Bon Appetempt: A Coming-of-Age Story by Amelia Morris

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I liked this book more than I expected and as much as I had hoped. Bon Appetempt lives up to the quiet humor of the title. It’s a satisfying home-cooked meal, comfort food, a memoir with recipes. It’s a book about resilience, really—and not to ignore the uniqueness of each life, original and beautiful as snowflakes, yadda yadda—it’s about ordinary life, ordinary pleasures, and how great the ordinary can be.

After growing up in the Eastern U. S., Amelia and Matt follow the dreams of typical creatives and move to Los Angeles. He has a bunch of projects that get greenlighted by Hollywood, then not made; she gets her MFA in creative writing; they struggle to pay the bills. They try to figure out day jobs that will still allow them to do their creative work. While she’s working on her novel, she starts the blog, Bon Appetempt. It started out to be a comparison of how a dish looks in the cooking magazines and cookbooks, and how it ends up looking after being made by an amateur at home: layer cakes that turn into Leaning Towers, etc. But the blog evolved, as did Amelia’s life and cooking skills and readership, and so we get this book.

It is a bit slow and recipe-shy in the beginning, but well worth reading on. Loved the crèpe chapter, and can’t wait to try Matt’s Lemon Pasta recipe. I do disagree that every soup should have cheese on top, but certainly some should. Shrimp pancakes—yum! And I’ll be looking for the cookbooks she quotes from, too.  There’s a quote from Julia Child that sums up the book, the blog, and the life lesson: "The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude." Would make a good book club book. Go for it!

I received an EARC of the book from Grand Central and Netgalley for review.

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