Julie Powell's top food reading picks -- The ''Julie & Julia'' author shares kitchen bookshelf faves like ''Toast'' and ''Home Cooking''

By EW Staff
Updated August 14, 2009 at 04:00 AM EDT

Toast
Nigel Slater’s bittersweet memoir captures what many food books fail to — that what we eat echoes not only through our nostalgic memories but the despairing times as well. This book is about adolescence, loneliness, and self-discovery, and how one boy learned to eat.

Home Cooking
When Laurie Colwin died suddenly in 1992, America lost one of its greatest contemporary food writers. Colwin chronicled the everyday rather than the elevated, revealing the experience of an ordinary woman in the kitchen. (Also, I love her brussels sprouts recipe!)

Never Eat Your Heart Out
This was the first book I was given to read when I began to write Julie & Julia. Judith Moore is a tough yet lyrical writer, without an ounce of sentimentality. Would that more books on food — more books at all — were this sharp and clear-sighted.

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