Blood Bones & Butter
Book-Treks great, Blood Bones & Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton.
Glass Castle-esque memoir. Gabrielle Hamilton learns butchering and natural cooking from erratic eccentric parents in a ramshackle Pennsylvania silk mill. When she finds herself on her own at 14, she survives by working in catering and camp kitchens from Northampton to New York City. Sporting scars, tatoos, and drug history of a migrant cook, she develops into a wife, mother, featured food writer and James Beard award-winning chef. Her acclaimed East Village restaurant, Prune, opened 1999.
It’s no wonder that Northampton restaurateur Linda Schwartz didn’t recognize her former quirky college line cook from the 80’s.
“After retiring from the restaurant business in the 90’s, Linda Schwartz became a culinary arts professor and enjoyed reading essays by Gabrielle Hamilton, a young food writer who shared her distaste for pretentious chefs posing at farmers’ markets with baskets on their arms. Schwartz learned that Hamilton opened a restaurant called Prune in New York. Schwartz wanted to meet this kindred writer, so went to Prune and introduced herself as a fan. Looks of familiarity passed between them. Hamilton shrieked, ‘I worked for you when I was at Hampshire College!’ Schwartz then realized that this was the avant-garde student line cook who worked for her back in the day.”
-excerpted from Table’s Edge, 2005.