|Sep. 30th, 2011 09:26 am Who needs Gwyneth Paltrow?*|
So I was listening to a podcast the other day. Something was mentioned, sending me off to Safari immediately to check it out. Type in the address and...holy shit. Jessica Harper has written a cookbook!2 comments - Leave a comment
Okay, maybe I need to explain who Jessica Harper is for some of you. Eons ago, I fell in love with the Brian DePalma masterpiece, "Phantom of the Paradise" (1974), in which Jessica Harper plays Phoenix, the...well, not the heroine. The love interest for William Finley's Winslow Leach/Phantom, as he goes up against Paul Williams' evil Swan. (Yes, *that* Paul Williams. Sadly, he has yet to write a cookbook.) Anyway, that's the first place I ever ran into Jessica Harper. She didn't impress me much. Her acting was okay, her singing was...well, fine, I guess. It's a good song, but it kind of slows things down. And her dancing...well, yeah. Not a high point of the film. Anyway, I didn't think about her much. I guess she was in other things that I haven't seen. "Suspiria" gets mentioned a lot. Then I fell in with "Wiseguy" fandom (Wiseguy, Cannell Productions, (1987-1990) and who should be there screwing over our favorite lightbulb with ears but Jessica Harper?** So that's pretty much where I know Jessica Harper from, one somewhat schlocky cult hit (with the most kick-ass soundtrack this side of "O Lucky Man!"...or possibly better. Don't make me choose.) and two episodes of a tv show from the 80's. I had no idea what she had been doing since then.
Well, apparently she was raising a family and writing a cookbook! It's called The Crabby Cook Cookbook, and she has a website for it [www.thecrabbycook.com]. I've been reading it over the last couple of days and I find it to be an amusing read as well as the home to "135 almost-effortless recipes plus survival tips". I stole that from the front cover. The cover is also home to quotes from Ruth Reichl and Valerie Bertinelli...weird combo, but hey. I've found several recipes I'd like to try for my family, and I feel that she can empathize with my issues in dealing with picky eaters, as she talks about the daughter who would only eat six things. I smiled when I read the words "When the kids got older and would tolerate pasta of different shapes...." Welcome to my world!
I think if you're looking for a family-friendly cookbook, one that isn't complicated and doesn't require you to go out and get anything more exotic than Gruyere cheese (admittedly, that would have been *plenty* exotic when I was growing up!), this one would be a good choice. Check out her website to get your own idea of what it's like.
*Nothing against Gwyneth Paltrow, but I've heard lots about her book while this one slipped under my radar.
**Maybe if she had done more cooking for Frank I would have been more sympathetic? Nah. She dumps her husband after he compromises his ethics to come up with the money to get a new liver for her? Hmph. Sorry...that was Jenny McPike, not Jessica Harper. Poor Frank....