Customer Review

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Come to the table, 4 April 2013
By 
This review is from: Bread and Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table with Recipes (Hardcover)
I was provided with a free advanced copy of Bread and Wine by the publisher in exchange for reviews and online comment.

Shauna's book is a collection of essays, a fusion of memories, insights and reflections about family life, friendships and the meals that bring us together. So it's a cookbook, encouraging a hands-on relationship to food - heat, knife, sizzle - but it is so much more.

The subtitle is "a love letter to life around the table" which gives the reader a clue to the essence off the book. Shauna is passionate about developing authentic relationships and sharing food is essential to that. It's fitting then that she shares favourite recipes with us. She writes about her "loosey-goosey" approach in the kitchen and her adaptation of recipes depending on what ingredients she has available at the time. She likens this to playing jazz - you learn the scales (recipes) as the basics, and then improvise, adapt and extend to make them your own. The recipes represent food that has a special place in her heart - food that she associates with special people, especially her Cooking Club, or the re-creation (approximately!) in her own kitchen of food that she has eaten in a particular restaurant, or on holiday. It's a neat idea - food integrated through life. And it works. (My favourite recipes so far - blueberry crisp, chicken and mango curry, real simple cassolet, oh and goats cheese biscuits...)

The final part of the book includes menus for entertaining and a discussion guide for a four week book/cooking club. All the measurements are in cups so if you're used to grams and mls, have a conversion table handy, or put measuring cups on your wish list!

Her writing is a call to openness and vulnerability and Shauna models this in the way she writes. It is personal without "letting it all hang out"; she gives just enough for the reader to identify with her - "that's me, I've been there" type response. So although she clearly loves the cooking process and the food, it's the people and the shared experience round the table that she values most.

In reading, I've been challenged about the quality of my relationships - do I have "a little band of people who walk through it all together, up close and in the mess, real time and unvarnished" around the table, or am I content with fast food TV dinner style relationships that are essentially superficial and taken on the run? Mmm...

Shauna makes her Christian faith clear at the start but Bread and Wine is not a book exclusively for those who share her point of view. The blend of personal stories and recipes makes it accessible to anyone who is willing to engage and explore life issues without psycho babble. However, the personal growth and replenishment which Shauna craves for herself and for us is perhaps only possible when we allow God to show up and meet us in the intersections of life. "The building blocks of the most common meal - the bread and the wine - are reminders to us: `He's here! God is here, and he's good.'"
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 


Review Details

Item

4.6 out of 5 stars (8 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (6)
4 star:
 (1)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
£11.44 £11.43
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Reviewer


Location: Southampton, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,204,436