Chef?s adventure bags award | india | Hindustan Times
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Chef?s adventure bags award

Food beat sex and New York vanquished London in the first Blooker Literary Prize for books that began life as blogs on the worldwide web and turned bloggers into authors.

india Updated: Apr 04, 2006 01:59 IST
Vijay Dutt

Food beat sex and New York vanquished London in the first Blooker Literary Prize for books that began life as blogs on the worldwide web and turned bloggers into authors.

The prize was awarded on Sunday night to Julie And Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny American Kitchen, an American cult book about “extreme cooking”, described as Nigella Lawson meets Bridget Jones. It narrates a cook’s adventures in the kitchen.

British hopes for a win rested on Belle de Jour: Intimate Adventures of A London Call Girl, a book that matured out of an anonymous blog serialising the diary of a prostitute. It had triggered a sensation two years ago with over 15,000 logging on to its website every day.

But the tales of French cooking by Julie Powell, a first-time New York writer, beat the intimate diary and a guide to the UK's best "greasy spoon" cafes to take the prize.

It’s like a fairy tale. Powell, 32, in an attempt to relieve the tedium of jobs like nannying and secretarial temps, set herself the challenge of trying to cook in 365 days in her cramped and ill-equipped Long Island kitchen, all 524 recipes from the 1961 classic American cookbook, Mastering The Art of French Cooking by Julia Child.

She recorded each dish on a widely-followed “chick-lit-style” blog along with the details of city life and daily grievances about love lives of friends who were invited to taste her culinary efforts.

But she was put on her way up the blog fame when Little Brown, the mainstream publisher, turned the blog into a book, which sold 100,000 copies in no time. A Hollywood producer is in discussion to turn it into a film.

Powell’s most difficult cooking involved a whole boned duck, apart from which there are 12 recipes requiring a whole leg of lamb.