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Last Chance To Eat: The Fate Of Taste In A Fast Food World
Synopses & Reviews
No eggs, no beef, and only an occasional fish. Those were the hungry years after the Second World War in the English countryside, when the sighting of a rogue hen or even a thin pig was a cause for celebration. But that didnt matter, because the warm stove was still the hub of the house, and a family meal, however scant, was a shared experience. Food still promised pleasure, unstained by guilt or fear. To eat was enough. But how quickly that would change as Gina Mallet journeyed through the darkening foodscape of our times.
It was in the 1990s, when the author was reviewing restaurants, that she came to confront the paradox of contemporary food. There was more and more food, more publicity about food, more cookbooks and cooking shows than ever, but there was less variety and less taste, and some common foods were actually threatened with extinction. Why?
In this provocative and evocative book, Gina Mallet weaves together her own experiences in England and America and her memories of great taste with a grim look at the enemies of good food: the U.N.s template for universal taste; trade wars; healthism; extreme environmentalists; food scientists; food scares; organic dogma; zero tolerance for flavour-bearing bacteria.
Mallet quotes Elizabeth David when she advises “Shop well” – but do it fast.
From the Hardcover edition.
FOOD HAS NEVER BEEN more exalted as part of a lifestyle, yet fewer and fewer people really know what good food is. Drawing on enough culinary experiences to fill several lifetimes, Gina Mallet's irreverent memoir combines recollections of meals and their milieus with recipes and tasting tips. In loving detail, Last Chance to Eat muses on the fates of foods that were once the stuff of feasts: light, fluffy eggs; rich cheeses; fresh meat; garden vegetables; and fish just hauled ashore. Mallet's gastronomic adventures appeal to any palate: from finding the perfect grilled cheese (as delicate tasting as any Escoffier recipe) to combing the bustling food department at postwar Harrod's for the makings of an Elizabeth David meal. The search for taste often takes her far from the beaten path--to an underground chevaline restaurant serving horsermeat steaks and to purveyors of contraband Epoisses, for instance--but the journey is always a delight.
About the Author
Gina Mallet is a journalist, restaurant reviewer, and enthusiastic cook, who has written extensively on food. She has been a regular contributor to the Globe and Mail, the National Post, Chatelaine, and Macleans.
From the Hardcover edition.
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