Lisa Jervis' book Cook Food is subtitled A Manualfesto for Easy, Healthy, Local Eating. The words "vegan, mostly" and "tasty" aren't in there, but they could be. Jervis, the co-founder of supersmart "feminist response to popular culture" magazine Bitch, brings her adorably persnickety voice to the world of cooking, with the overall effect having a sort of Joy of Cooking-meets-easygoing-grad-student tone. Half food-politics essay, half clear instructions on the fact that, say, "There are three basic ways to cook vegetables," the book does read a bit like a literary magazine. In the relatively small recipes section, the author readily admits, "Some of the ingredient distinctions may seem fussy, and you're right, they kinda are." She has her reasons, though. She says, these vegan cookies will have people swooning about how much butter must be in them, and to our eyes, that's one version of culinary utopia. At today's reading, Jervis also makes some goodies for the audience.
Fri., July 24, 7 p.m., 2009