Tasting Home: Coming of Age in the Kitchen

| June 27, 2014

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Tasting Home: Coming of Age in the Kitchen

If Julia Child had cooked Italian for a gay husband, used sugar to sweeten a sour childhood, and hosted buffets for a better world, she could have written Tasting Home: Coming of Age in the Kitchen.

In this food memoir, Judith Newton shares the unforgettable story of a life on the front lines of activism and in the kitchen. During a difficult childhood, food and cooking were sources of comfort and emotional sustenance.  And in the decades to come, through her marriage to a gay man, her discovery of feminism, her life in a commune, and her career as an academic, she used food to sustain personal and political relationships, mourn losses, and celebrate victories. As she earned her activist stripes in the 1960s and beyond, she also learned how food could ease tension, foster community, and build cross-racial ties.

Tasting Home combines recipes with personal vignettes, in the classic form of food memoirs by writers such as M.F.K. Fisher and Ruth Reichl, to take us on a remarkable journey through the cuisines, cultural spirit, and politics of the 1940s through the 2000s.

By turns moving, joyful, thoughtful, and wry, it is sprinkled with recipes and scenes of cooking and dining that invite us to feel how deeply food is tied to identity,
love, community, and political engagement.

If you loved Like Water for Chocolate, you should try Tasting Home.

See an essay based on this book, “A Valentine for My Gay Ex-Husband,”
at Huffington Post Judith Newton.

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