smitten with food blogger Deb Perelman
After Thanksgiving, I achieved a blogger book tour trifecta.* Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen, who has never let me down when I need simple, delicious food (mainly of the dessert variety), was on her new cookbook tour and was making a stop in Coolidge Corner. Erin and I had planned months ago to attend. I called Booksmith the day tickets became available, but was 30 minutes too late. The sales associate reassured me that the standby line offered good odds for making it into Deb's talk at the Coolidge, and the book signing was open to everyone, not just ticket holders.
Almost a month later, Erin and I were in the standby line in front of the Coolidge. We chatted about the cookbook as we waited. Erin already had her copy, and she let me flip through as we waited. On the blog Deb's essays complement the recipes like a good glass of wine and provide an extra layer of depth, and her photography is mouthwatering. I had high expectations for the cookbook, and it didn't disappoint.
We slowly moved forward as someone from Booksmith sporadically counted off people from the front of the line. We were two of the last people to make it inside.
Deb was like your amazing next door neighbor: not a slick rehearsed speaker but an endearing storyteller. She gave a quick rundown of how she started the blog and how she happened to write her cookbook, then devoted the rest of the time to answering questions. In response to a query about the number of monthly hits her site gets, she said "8 to 10... million, no big deal" with an embarrassed laugh, and joked that her readers and book tour attendees were all bribed by her mother to read/show up.
After the talk, we were thankful for our late entry to the Coolidge because being at the back of the theater put us near the front of the book signing line. (Tip for author events at Booksmith: buy the book ahead of time, because the book must be purchased before you get in the signing line.) When we got to the table, we had a great conversation with Deb. I told her how a few weeks prior I made her everyday chocolate cake to celebrate a community group birthday, which Deb informed us led her to the red wine velvet cake in the cookbook, which Erin exclaimed she just made for John's birthday. A chain of chocolaty birthday goodness.
Though Ian couldn't join us, he's the cook in our family so I couldn't leave him out of the dedication. He flipped through the cookbook when he got home later that night and we could eat for a month if we executed all of the recipes that made him say "we should make that!" I can't wait.
*In addition to this Smitten Kitchen event, I also attend the Young House Love event at West Elm and a Christina Rosalie event at Trident.