Julie’s Insta Checkout: Kitchens of the Great Midwest – J. Ryan Stradal

Working at the library today, this book I was checking out for someone caught my eye.

I knew nothing about it, but, reading the summary, it looked interesting. Checked Amazon and it apparently was a New York Times bestseller and won several awards when it came out in 2015. I’m not sure how I missed it then, but gotta read it now. Our copy was, as I said, checked out so I grabbed my phone, used the Libby app to borrow the ebook, and had it downloaded before the phone rang again. Instant gratification, thy name is Libby!  I’ll let you know how I like it.

About the book:

“When Lars Thorvald’s wife, Cynthia, falls in love with wine—and a dashing sommelier—he’s left to raise their baby, Eva, on his own. He’s determined to pass on his love of food to his daughter—starting with puréed pork shoulder. As Eva grows, she finds her solace and salvation in the flavors of her native Minnesota. From Scandinavian lutefisk to hydroponic chocolate habaneros, each ingredient represents one part of Eva’s journey as she becomes the star chef behind a legendary and secretive pop-up supper club, culminating in an opulent and emotional feast that’s a testament to her spirit and resilience.

Each chapter in J. Ryan Stradal’s startlingly original debut tells the story of a single dish and character, at once capturing the zeitgeist of the Midwest, the rise of foodie culture, and delving into the ways food creates community and a sense of identity. By turns quirky, hilarious, and vividly sensory, Kitchens of the Great Midwest is an unexpected mother-daughter story about the bittersweet nature of life—its missed opportunities and its joyful surprises. It marks the entry of a brilliant new talent.”

Also available as an e-audio.