Tender at the Bone

Tender at the Bone is Gourmet Magazine Editor Ruth Reichl’s hilarious memoir of growing up and the people who nutured her love and appreciation of food. The book starts off with many stories of her mother, The Queen of Mold, from whom Ruth would protect house guests for fear of food poisoning.

Her friends seemed surprisingly unaware that they took their lives in their hands each time they ate with us. They chalked their ailments up to the weather, the flu, or one of my mother’s more unusual dishes. “No more sea urchins for me,” I imagined Burt Langner saying to his wife, Ruth, after a dinner at our house, “they just don’t agree with me.” Little did he know that it was not the sea urchins that had made him ill, but that bargain beef my mother had found so irresistible.

The book continues through French boarding school, a trip to North Africa, running a Berkeley restaurant in the 70s, and the launch of her career as a restaurant critic in San Francisco. Each chapter includes a well loved recipe many of which I can’t wait to try. Tender at the Bone is a great read for anyone who appreciates good food.


  1. elise

    Hi Amy, thanks for the suggestion about Comfort me with Apples. It was a lot of fun as well. Picks up where Tender at the Bone leaves off. More good recipes too, especially one for crab cakes. Have to remember to try it when it is crab season again.

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