The Tampa Tribune’s food writer since 2005, Jeff Houck covers the way people live through their food. He also hosts the Table Conversations food podcast and believes that everything crunchy is good.
Most Recent Entries
- And Now, A Look Back At Year 2014 [Back To The Food Future]
- Behold This Year’s Crazy Florida State Fair Food [Krispy Kreme Cheeseburger, Step Aside]
- The Best Things I Ate In 2013, Part 2 [And Some Of Your Favorite Flavors As Well ]
- The Best Things I Ate In 2013, Part 1 [Thanks For The Calories]
- A Little Sumthin’ Sumthin’ Extra For Santa [Up On The Rooftop, Snack, Snack, Snack]
- Epicurean Hotel, One Week From Opening, Tantalizes With Details [Goat Cheese On The Mini-Bar]
- A Word Or Two About Great Bar Food [And The Golden Snacky Award Goes To…]
- This Haiku Contest/Is All About The Fruitcake/Get To Writing, Stat! [Guess Who’s Judging?]
- Five Edible Christmas Gifts To Buy For Friends and Loved Ones [Black Friday Comes Just Once A Year]
- Giving Thanks For Alternatives To Thanksgiving [Turkey, Shmurkey.]
- Taking A Bite Of The Pillsbury Bake-Off [Fear And Baking In Las Vegas]
- Sea Urchin Crostini, Tiger Beef Salad And Faked Alaska [This Week’s Weekend Eats]
- A Way To Eat Kale For People Who Hate Kale [Chef John Besh Cooks From The Heart]
- The Sip: 3 Daughters Brewing Comes To Live [Pumpkin Tap, Carmel Cafe Cocktails, Great Sips]
- Remembering Marcella Hazan [The Most Important Ingredient]
Marion Cunningham, 1922-2012 [‘She gave legitimacy to home cooking.’]
Posted Jul 12, 2012 by Jeff Houck
Updated Jul 12, 2012 at 12:05 PM
I write about food, so I frequently run into people who inflate it with lots of hype and overblown verbiage.
I know. Using the phrase “overblown verbiage” is, by its very definition, a portrait of just that. Just say “hot air,” Jeff!
Which is why the passing of cookbook author Marion Cunningham is such a loss. Not only did she help home cooks with her simplified recipes for the revised version of “The Fannie Farmer Cookbook,” and helped with the discovery of Alice Waters, she also popped more than a few ego balloons with her straightforward take on just about everything:
Plain-spoken and quick with a quip or a gentle jab, Mrs. Cunningham could cut through the puffery of fancy chefs and food writers. Once, after a food author spent the day watching her make pie crust, taking meticulous notes on how many times she cut and stirred, she called Ms. Reichl.
“He really is crazy, dear, don’t you think?” Ms. Reichl recalled her saying. “Nobody could make a decent crust following those directions.”
Her humor extended to her cookbooks. In one passage from “The Fannie Farmer Cookbook,” on how to crack fresh coconut, she suggested throwing it on a cement patio.
“That’s how monkeys do it,” she wrote, “and they are professionals.”