I didn’t mean this to be about food and cooking, but as always, it’s somehow turned out that way. One of my favourite books of last year was Michael Pollan’s Cooked, a memoir-slash-call-to-arms about the history of cooking and its important role in our lives. As well as inspiring me to make sourdough from scratch and be patient enough to actually let a soffritto cook properly, it also inspired my reading resolution for 2014.
As someone who’s managed to get through an English degree and six years as a bookseller, I probably shouldn’t admit to this, but I’ve never read The Odyssey. Or The Iliad. It’s probably about time I rectified that. What does this have to do with food, you ask? Well, if Pollan is to be believed (and he has Henry Fielding to back him up – 'Ulysses ... seems to have had the best stomach of all the heroes in that eating poem of the Odyssey' – from The History of Tom Jones), The Odyssey is just a good story about some guys who love to barbecue. I love barbecue too. So that settles it.