Published by Scribner
Publication date: August 9th 2011
Genres: Cultural, Fiction
I am almost speechless at how much I enjoyed this book. The Hundred-Foot Journey is a beautiful, thoughtfully written story about one man’s trek from unwelcome immigrant to renowned chef in Paris. Hassam Haji starts life living above his grandfather’s restaurant in Mumbai. When they family leaves india and settles in France it becomes Hassam’s dream to be a chef in a French restaurant. His decision to abandon his native cuisine impacts all his family relationships but his efforts to be accepted by the French culinary culture are the meat of the story.
I was captivated not only by the story itself but by author Richard Morais’ evocative descriptions of food. Like a great chef who skillfully brings together all the components of a perfect meal Morais weaves sentences that make your mouth water and leave you wanting more.
I could go on with my comparisons of writing and cooking but I’ll boil it down by saying read this book! It is a lovely ode to the magic of food that will fill you up until the last page, when you’ll smile and push back from the table feeling wonderfully, happily satisfied (I couldn’t resist).
p.s. If, like me, you often want to learn more about the author of a beloved book, you can watch this great video where Richard Morais has Floyd Cardoz, owner and chef of Tabla in NYC, make 2 of the main characters favorite dishes. I love it!
p.s.s As if that weren’t enough, the book has been made into a movie which premieres in August. It stars Helen Mirren which gives me hope that it will be good. And if it’s not? Let’s not go there- it won’t be pretty.