National Reading Movement

Books That Will Make Us Hungry

Reading has the power to make you feel things. It can make you laugh, cry or feel hungry…

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Yes, we did say hungry. Some books describe food so well that we salivate reading them! Here is a list of books guaranteed to stimulate your curiosity and palate.

Warning – Do not read these books when you’re hungry.


Beignets

Anyone who has been to New Orleans would have heard of Beignets or Cafe Du Mont that serves up world-famous Beignets! These crisp pillows of fried dough, seemingly made in heaven, make doughnuts look like a sad imitation attempt.

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That’s probably how the protagonist of J.R. Ripley’s Buried in Beignets viewed beignets. It has always been Maggie Miller’s dream to serve beignets in her very own cafe. Escaping her old life, she flees to Table Rock, Arizona to actualise her dream. However, things took a turn for the worse on the day of her cafe opening when she discovers a man murdered with her marble rolling pin and the possession of the victim in her storeroom.

In this quirky part mystery, part cookbook, J.R. Ripley does a fantastic job of juggling our attention between the plot and the vivid pictures of beignets.

 

Sushi

The first thing that comes to your mind when you think of Japan would almost always be sushi. A slice of raw fish gently placed on top of sticky sweet Japanese rice?

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But do you know the journey people have to undertake before qualifying to be called a sushi chef? If you think making sushi is simply rolling rice and plonking a slice of raw fish on it, you’re in for a surprise.

Trevor Corson shadows several novices and a Japanese master chef from California Sushi Academy to bring you The Story of Sushi: An Unlikely Saga of Raw Fish and Rice. This book takes you through the entire process and the considerations behind the art of sushi-making including the moulding of the rice, the types of fish and the methods of preserving the fish.

Be prepared to cast out everything you know about this quintessential Japanese dish!

 

Ash e Anar (Ash)

No, these aren’t the ashes you get from burning! Ash is the Iranian term for a “thick soup” and Ash e Anar is a soup made from pomegranate.

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In the aptly-named Pomegranate Soup, Marsha Mehran tells the journey of Marjan, Layla and Bahar who fled to Ireland from Iran. Settling into a small town in Ireland, the three sisters introduced their culture through food.

As the sisters began baking their Iranian pastries in an old pastry shop, more and more townsfolk open up to them. However, not all welcomed the sisters and their culture. Factions soon form as the populace side with either the sisters or the town’s uncrowned king, Thomas McGuire who aims to put them out of business. To add to the trouble, the sisters’ past catches up with them and threatens their future.

Pomegranate Soup is nothing short of a masterpiece as Marsha Mehran presents the immense sadness experienced by the Iranians with a light touch and introduces the world to the gastronomical selections of Iranian cuisines.

 

Chinese Cuisine

Roti prata, mee rebus, char kway tiao; these are just the tip of the iceberg of food options available in Singapore. For better or worse, the different cuisines also mean that there is no sole signature Singaporean dish. There’s always something for everyone, regardless of what your palate favours.

In her memoir A Tiger in the Kitchen, Cheryl Lu shares her experience in New York – away from home and all the food she craves. Eventually succumbing to her cravings for her childhood dishes, Cheryl flies back in an attempt to reconnect with her grandmother and aunts to learn the art of recreating authentic Singaporean dishes.

Did we also mention that this book includes ten authentic recipes from her teachers?

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This memoir will take you through the world of Singaporean Chinese cuisines and instil an urge to try out these recipes for yourself!

Share with us what other books makes you hungry and don’t forget, you can always look for them through our catalogue!