I’m Heidi Schoembs, formerly Real Simple’s executive producer and now the social media director for Time Inc.’s Lifestyle Group.
I’m so excited to be leading this month’s book club. First, a confession: I was privately hoping 97 Orchard would win! As the daughter of immigrant parents (who happen to be dynamite cooks), I’ve always been fascinated by the role food plays in defining a culture and how food traditions evolve over time. And I love the idea that a secret family recipe or guarded cooking technique somehow finds its way to the next generation.
I know we have a lot of “foodies” in the Real Simple audience. But I’m wondering just how many of us have recipes that have been passed down or learned from another member of the family? I understand a recipe is no longer a secret if you post it on the site (Mama Schoembs would kill me if I ever revealed her cheesecake or rouladen recipes), so no need to share the recipe’s details—unless you really want to!
Finally, a quick rundown of the reading schedule. Since each of the book’s chapters features one of five families, let’s organize our discussions in the same manner:
Part One: The Glockner Family and the Moore Family (Chapters 1 and 2; pages 1 to 82)
Part Two: The Gumpertz Family and the Rogarshevsky Family (Chapters 3 and 4; pages 83 to 182)
Part Three: The Baldizzi Family (Chapter 5; pages 183 to 228)
We’ll read Part One for our first discussion, on Friday, September 10.
Enjoy your Labor Day weekend!
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