Feast is written to stand alongside Nigella’s classic and best loved book, How to Eat. Comprehensive and informed, this stunning new book will be equally at home in the kitchen or on the bedside table.
A feast for both the eyes and the senses, written with Nigella Lawson’s characteristic flair and passion, Feast: Food that Celebrates Life is a major book in the style of her classic How to Eat, applying Nigella’s “Pleasures and Principles of Good Food” to the celebrations and special occasions of life.
Essentially about families and food, about public holidays and private passions, about how to celebrate the big occasions and the small everyday pleasures — those times when food is more than just fuel — Feast takes us through Christmas, Thanksgiving and birthdays, to Passover and a special Sardinian Easter; from that first breakfast together to a meal fit for the in-laws; from seasonal banquets of strawberries or chestnuts to the ultimate chocolate cake; from food for cheering up the “Unhappy Hour” to funeral baked-meats; from a Georgian feast to a love-fest; from Nigella’s all-time favourite dish to a final New Year fast.
Evocative, gorgeous, refreshingly uncomplicated and full of ideas, Feast proclaims Nigella’s love of life and great food with which to celebrate it. Packed with over 200 recipes from all over the world — and from near home — with helpful menus for whole meals, and more than 120 colour photographs, Feast is destined to become a classic.
"Cooking has many functions, and only one of them is about feeding people," writes Lawson in a cookbook that makes the preparation of Thanksgiving, Christmas and other feasts seem so approachable and richly rewarding that it may coax even hardcore cynics or cowards to give roast turkey with all the trimmings a try. For starters, there is Lawson's star quality. "When we go into a kitchen, indeed when we even just think about going into a kitchen, we are both creating and responding to an idea we hold about ourselves, about what kind of person we wish to be." The person that Lawson has demonstrated a wish to be while cooking on her TV show Nigella Bites and in her cookbooks (How to Be a Domestic Goddess, etc.) is a woman in full, alive in body and mind.Lawson has always playfully gloried in the erotic possibilities of cooking. She has always proclaimed herself an eater rather than a chef, but what she is really is a marvelous, funny food writer for our pressured times. She knows exactly how to balance her relish of the earthy with just the right twist of smarty-pants, Oxford-inflected wit. Explaining, for example, why she now chooses to bake stuffing in a terrine, she hastens to note that while she is "perfectly happy with my arm up a goose as I ram it with compacted sauerkraut, or whatever the occasion demands, I find turkey-wrangling just one psycho-step too far. The bird is too heavy, the cavity too small, and the job is just too tragi-comic to be managed alone and after all that Christmas wrapping, too." Lawson knows how to make her readers fall in love (or at least in lust) with her.Readers will come away from this book with a sense of what she thinks is worth loving. Along with her recipes for Christmas pudding or her "amplification" of her mother's green beans (involving "vicious amounts of lemon"), Lawson teaches what is primal and timeless about feasting. "I am not someone who believes that life is sacred, but I know it is very precious," she writes in a final section about funeral feasts that describes Mormon potatoes and Jewish eggs, comfort food to remind the bereaved "that life goes on, that living is important." She ends the book with Rosemary Remembrance Cake in honor of her grandmother Rosemary (and anybody else who happens to have read Shakespeare and knows that rosemary is for remembrance). Lawson shows that creating a feast doesn't just nourish the body and the mind it creates an even more interesting self that also has a heart, whose function is remembering. 150 color photos. Author tour.