Pink Lady® presents #SensationalReads
We are very excited to announce we are launching Pink Lady®’s Sensational Reads, a collection of some of our favourite books which are all full of flavour. We have teamed up with novelist and journalist Caroline O’Donoghue to create this reading list, featuring 8 books which all feature food in fascinatingly different ways.
Caroline talks us through our Sensational Reads and why she picked each one.
“Look. I’ll be honest. I’m not much of a foodie. I like eating. I like trying new things. I like the four dinner recipes I can cook (they are: roast chicken, Thai noodle soup, risotto, and fried cheese sandwiches) and I like being cooked for. But I’m not someone who has very complicated thoughts about flavour composition. I can’t airily assign a personality to a cheese, or describe a glass of wine like it’s a vast impressionist painting. Wine is wine. Cheese is cheese. These things are simple to me, because I am a very, very simple person.
“So when Pink Lady® asked me to put a book club together based on books that relate to food and flavour, I panicked. I scanned my book shelves for descriptions of banquets, of transformative mouthfuls, of delicious morsels. I looked for these books in the full knowledge that I hate this kind of writing. I hate words like “morsel”. I’m a professional writer, and in some cases, a professional reader, and even I have to admit that my eyes tend to skip over any lengthy descriptions of food, houses, or dresses, because I just want to carry on with the story. I don’t want to read decoratively. I want to keep being vaulted along this journey with the writer, and I don’t want to linger over an orange tree while I do it.
“But then I realised something very obvious. Food isn’t decorative. Food is essential. Flavour is essential. It’s literally the stuff our lives are built on. And the best writing about food keeps this at the very centre: the idea that this is one of the few things we can’t live without, and how we live with it tells us everything we need to know.
“A character uses the wrong spoon at a dinner party. A character only takes spices with her when she leaves her home country. A character decides to eat (or not eat) until she gets sick.
“The choice to eat or not; to cook or not; to pick up the spoon or not. This is the stuff that tells us who are characters really are. Where they come from, and where they’re going. And once I decided that great food writing wasn’t about finding the best banquet scene, but about finding books that use food to tell a story, my bookshelf opened up. Suddenly I had too many options. Nevertheless, I somehow managed to whittle them down to eight.”