Monday, May 12, 2008

An Interview with Kate Jacobs

I was honored to be asked to interview Kate Jacobs, the author of Comfort Food. You may recognize the name from her previous book, Friday Night Knitting Club. To be honest, I'm not one for fluffy fiction. Although I'll pick up one every now and then for fun, I usually choose to read foodie books or those that are nonfiction. I was pleasantly surprised when I received a copy of Comfort Food in the mail and I immediately sat down to read it. It's definitely one of those books that are easy to read and you'll find yourself immersed in the middle before you know it.

Coming up with questions for an author was much much harder than I thought. Hopefully you'll enjoy reading these questions and answers.

What are some of your most enjoyable memories spent in the kitchen?
Kate J: I have a photo of myself as a fairly young girl – maybe 6 or so? – and I’m in an apron, my hair up in a ribbon, and I’m baking with my older sister. I really enjoyed those times. The funny thing is that, as a teenager, I was so difficult about learning anything my mom wanted to teach me about cooking or sewing. But I have always loved to bake chocolate chip cookies. I like to make chewy ginger cookies, too. Or brownies. All from scratch. I find it an excellent stress reliever.

Were there special mealtime rituals or traditions that your family shared?
Kate J: You know, we always had a drink before dinner – pop, in my case – accompanied by raw veggies and dip. I have learned, as an adult, that this was my mother’s trick to get the kids to eat their vegetables. The surprise is that not only did it work, but it was a great ritual for being together. We’d all read the paper and watch the news and talk about stuff. My friends used to love to come over for dinner because of “veggies and dip” time.

You've written books about both knitting and cooking. I myself love to knit and cook. How do you find the two interrelated?
Kate J: Well, with both of these, the sum is greater than its parts, that’s for sure. Both knitting and cooking are creative and nurturing and can be great fun and yet incredibly frustrating when things go wrong! And in my new novel, Comfort Food, there are lots of things that go awry on the television cooking show that is the setting for the book. In fact, one of the mishaps is something that once happened to me in real life...but I won't give anything away by telling you what it was!

What would you eat for your last meal on earth?
Kate J: Wow, that’s a tough one. Am I cooking it? Then I’d have my favorite guilty pleasure: al dente pasta with butter and parmigiano-reggiano. Simple and delicious. But if I can choose absolutely anything, I’d have my late grandmother’s chicken soup with homemade noodles, fresh bread, fried chicken, and cherry pie – with scratch crust and cherries from the tree in her yard. All the grandkids spent a good chunk of time at Nanny’s and I’m telling you, we ate well!

Thanks for reading!

No comments: