Garlic and Sapphires by Ruth Reichl {Cook the Books}

garlicSapThis is a second time around with this book but it was my first Ruth Reichl book several years back.  I liked it quite a bit; it’s always good to revisit an excellent foodie book. I’m usually attracted to books about food and restaurants, behind the scenes stuff and recipes included are a bonus. Ruth is the known for being an editor at Gourmet magazine and a food critic. If you are in the restaurant business then you know what the critics look like. You have their photo posted in the kitchen most likely so they will get the star treatment.

In Garlic and Sapphires, Ruth disguises her appearance so she will get a true impression of the food and service quality. There are many hilarious scenes where she can view what’s going on in the restaurant and the wait staff pay her no mind, as she is just another diner. The Windows of the World restaurant experience was well written – very funny.

It’s clear Ruth has a passion for food and shares this in her reviews of the food and service. Good memoir, I would certainly read another of Ruth’s books. After finishing this book I immediately copied half the recipes.

An excerpt: “Everyone makes a big to-do about roasting a chicken, and as a food professional I know I ought to believe that one way to tell a great cook is by his or her roasted chicken. But you know what? I think that’s all a lot of nonsense. Nothing is easier than roasting a chicken. ………It’s hard to ruin this.”

The roasted potatoes had my attention.  I sure do love potatoes. Tough choice on my carb favorites as the Carbonara was my next choice.

Ruth Reichl’s Roast chicken with potatoes, onions and garlic from the chapter A Frugal Repast For Betty.


This is the June/July selection at Cook The Books hosted by Claudia at Honey from The Rock.  Check out the lineup and see more recipes inspired from this book.

Also, this is my July selection for the Girlxoxo Monthly Motif Challenge. It’s a non-traditional “vacation read” but as I love foodie books, this was perfect for me.

More info!

Ruth Reichl
Ruth on Twitter

Happy Reading!

8 thoughts on “Garlic and Sapphires by Ruth Reichl {Cook the Books}

  1. I read these three years and years ago and loved them so much but don’t remember all that much about them. I wasn’t as much into cooking when I was reading them and never tried the recipes.

    How frustrating about your internet situation! Can you get HughesNet where you are? I know that’s what my grandparents have near Tylertown and it’s not great but it seems reasonably consistent.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Roast chicken and potatoes is such a perfect dinner: great choice! I agree with Reichl’s position that roasting a chicken is not the test of a cook’s skill. I imagine it is possible though to ruin a roast chicken: I hope I will never do such a thing 🙂


  3. Pingback: ROUNDUP of the 2018 Monthly Motif reading challenge | Novel Meals

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