The pedant in the kitchen. Julian Barnes. The Pedant's ambition is simple. He wants to cook tasty, nutritious food; he wants not to poison his friends; and he wants to expand, slowly and with pleasure, his culinary repertoire. Published on Apr 17, SlideShare Explore Search You. Submit Search. Successfully reported this slideshow. We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime. Upcoming SlideShare. Like this presentation? Why not share! Embed Size px. Now we have it all: literary writer cum food writer, lawyer cum food columnist, cook cum writer, I guess the new kid in literary town currently is books about food and cooking.
Now we have it all: literary writer cum food writer, lawyer cum food columnist, cook cum writer, captain cum restaurant reviewer Yes, Capt. This book is a collection of short essays written by Julian Barnes www. He has tons of awards and nominations including the Somerset Maugham award and two Booker Prize nominations. Pedant, in Longman Dictionary, is defined as someone who pays too much attention to rules and details.
Barnes discussed the various problems with cookbooks from the point of view of a pedant and, based on his obsessions with preciseness , he dispenses advices. Pedantic nature, I suppose, is actually common in untalented, amateur cooks or beginners who rely heavily in step-by-step cooking manuals. These people eg. So, I appreciate his sympathy and understanding of the perils of inexact measurements and imprecise instructions to amateur cooks. Read his two particularly useful advises as examples: 1.
I once knew a commercial photographer who specialized in food and, believe me, the post-production work that recently gave us a slimline Kate Winslet is as nothing compared to what they shamelessly do to food. And how many of the little buggers do you think you get to the pound? Leave the seeds in and call it extra roughage. It is superbly British: dry, witty, and a little sarcastic.
Yet, true to his pedantic nature, the language and description of the events in the essays are crisp and precise. In short, this is a good book to read for winding down after a hard day at work: it is funny and refreshing and light. May 29, Fiona rated it it was amazing Shelves: i-also-read-nonfiction-occasionally , favourites , read-in , kindle-books.
I read this in a day, which was today. It was comfort reading after giving up on a book that I wanted to like, but didn't, and I slipped into reading it like it was the most natural thing in the world. I have yet to read any of Julian Barnes's fiction, but his memoir, his attitude and his writing voice make me want to be his friend. I laughed out loud on the bus, and sat on a bench during my lunch break.
People stared. This book makes me miss my dad, who would grin as broadly as I do reading it, a I read this in a day, which was today. This book makes me miss my dad, who would grin as broadly as I do reading it, and it makes me wish it was his birthday sooner than March so I could give a copy to him. I might just buy it for him anyway, package it up and post it to him just because. This is a wonderful book, like sitting in the kitchen of someone you like, peeling potatoes and chatting while they orchestrate supper. Julian Barnes makes me miss my family, and I loved reading him talk, and hearing about his day.
View all 4 comments. First of all, Happy Birthday Julian Barnes! With 17 read books, you have officially become my most-read author. This book was a bit different, but that's what Barnes is: always different, always surprising us with various themes and writing styles. This is a book about cooking, but it's not a cookbook. It's Barnes'' thought on cooking and cookbooks. It's surprisingly interesting and rather good. If - like me - you love Julian Barnes' dry wit, astute observations and brilliant writing you, too, will enjoy this small gem; his "culinary memoirs". Whilst he uses self-deprecating humour to outline the limits of his cooking skills, I was seriously impressed with some of the dishes he made or at least attempted to make.
I reckon that "She for Whom He cooks" is only lucky woman - especially when he changed his mind on cooking the squirrel! Feb 19, Debbie rated it really liked it Shelves: full-deck-challenge , full-deck. I adore Julian Barnes writing, great to gain an insight into his world. This is a very endearing account of food and cooking for loved ones. Highly amusing anecdotes at his struggles and failures that bring recognition of one's own culinary disasters. This was a delight to read and is highly recommended. I failed to see the point of this book. The humour seemed a bit forced and the book seemed to lack any real direction.
It was an easy and light read, but not one I particularly enjoyed.
Nov 19, Roxy rated it really liked it. Completely engrossing, funny, interesting, and educational. View 1 comment. Barnes is not a natural cook, rather he is a follower of the recipe, an acolyte of the great cookery writers, but most of all a pendant. In this delightful little book he takes several subjects and writes a short essay on each. He writes about dinner parties, the exact dimensions of a medium onion, the frustrations of some cook books and the delights of others. There is some great advice in here too. When doing a dinner party, do as they do in France, and buy one of two of the courses.
Don't ever Barnes is not a natural cook, rather he is a follower of the recipe, an acolyte of the great cookery writers, but most of all a pendant. Don't ever make the River Cafe chocolate nemesis, dried pasta is as good as fresh and that the most useful gadget for a home kitchen is a sign saying; This is not a Restaurant. I am starting to like Barnes as a writer more, Not a word is wasted, nor is there a morsel out of place. Dec 28, Leo Africanus rated it really liked it Shelves: funny-stuff , food.
An hilariously accurate portrayal of the pitfalls of pedantry in the kitchen. If you've spent far too much time obsessing about what a medium sized onion really is, then this is the book for you. Read it in two hours, liked it, but somehow I don't feel like re-reading it or keeping it around the house. However, it does deserve a reading. Jan 05, Roxana Russo rated it liked it. I desperately wanted to love this book, particularly since Julian Barnes is one of my favorite authors; in my experience he's never provided me with anything less than utter bliss.
Sadly, I walked away from the experience woefully dissatisfied. I will blame this on myself for two major reasons. For one, as an American, the humor was quite probably lost on me, my degrees in English literature and history and countless travels to the UK notwithstanding. Several reviewers had made the claim that th I desperately wanted to love this book, particularly since Julian Barnes is one of my favorite authors; in my experience he's never provided me with anything less than utter bliss.
Several reviewers had made the claim that the book was "insanely funny" and that I'd better hold on tightly to the text lest I inadvertently "toss it across the room in several of the bouts of laughter [I] will, without a doubt, experience". Sadly, the most I was able to offer was a slightly bemused smile.
The Pedant In The Kitchen
Secondly, aside from Mrs. Beaton, all of the great chefs and cookery books he mentioned were entirely unknown to me; my ignorance surely detracted from my enjoyment of the work. Barnes discusses several of the problems we home cooks have struggled with; when ought one to cull his collection of cookbooks? Why do we keep books we seldom use?
The Pedant In The Kitchen – Atlantic Books
Why, though we have a collection of three hundred recipe books, do we keep finding ourselves returning to same three? Why do we all have a drawer full of useless kitchen utensils we never can bring ourselves to empty? He does answer these and several other questions adequately but unoriginally.
However, the book is possessed of several redeeming qualities. I would recommend it merely for the story of the "Amorous Admiral" wherein an admiral, whom Barnes invited to dinner, begins to flirt shamelessly with his Barnes's wife whilst he is in the kitchen preparing hare in chocolate sauce.
As a result of his indignation, the recipe is ruined, and due to the negative association, he intends to never attempt it again. There are several such gems in "The Pedant in the Kitchen" which makes it a worthwhile read. Though it wasn't what I expect from a genius such as Barnes, it is still a lovely book nonetheless.
Feb 01, Sid Nuncius rated it it was amazing Shelves: some-favourites-from I found this a delight. It was a present of the best sort; one which I probably wouldn't have bought for myself but which I am delighted to have discovered. The Pedant In the Kitchen is a collection of Barnes's regular articles in The Guardian, so it's a sequence of relatively short pieces, each on a cooking- or food-related theme.
They are often very funny and, like so much good comedy, based in very shrewd observation and understanding. He recounts his own cooking experiences with wit and commo I found this a delight. He recounts his own cooking experiences with wit and common sense.