• From the Publisher
May 13, 2013

In 2009, Julia Moskin and Kim Sev­er­son, office wives” who are both staff reporters for the New York Times Din­ing” sec­tion, agreed to a din­ner duel, to be medi­at­ed by the one and only Frank Bruni-leg­endary restau­rant crit­ic for the paper. Armed with only $50.00, they each had to pre­pare a meal for six, a culi­nary bat­tle non pareil. The result was an enor­mous­ly pop­u­lar arti­cle-real­ly, a three page full col­or spread-for the Times, which quick­ly became one of that mon­th’s most emailed arti­cles. Cook­fight is the year long sto­ry of their brinks­man­ship, as Moskin and Sev­er­son face-off on one cook’s dilem­ma after anoth­er, from the Passover Seder to the Thanks­giv­ing table; from East­er Ham to Christ­mas Cook­ies; from sum­mer’s boun­ty to Win­ter’s dol­drums. From Jan­u­ary through Decem­ber, Cook­fight deliv­ers a new chal­lenge” for each month-from the bud­get” chal­lenge that rocked the Times, to a com­fort” chal­lenge, to a veg­e­tar­i­an” chal­lenge-the results of which are chron­i­cled in hilar­i­ous, side-by-side nar­ra­tives and deli­cious, inven­tive, recipes such as Juli­a’s Moz­zarel­la, Red Grape, and Black Olive Sal­ad or Kim’s Gin­ger and Cere­al Milk Pan­na Cot­ta. Work­ing moth­ers with spous­es, chil­dren, dead­lines, and aging par­ents to wor­ry about, Moskin and Sev­er­son cook for the real world-and Cook­fight is a cel­e­bra­tion of hav­ing fun in the kitchen, even on the hard­est days. With an intro­duc­tion by Frank Bruni, col­or pho­tog­ra­phy through­out, use­ful side­bars and cook­ing tips, and Kim and Juli­a’s sense of humor as they bat­tle it out, Cook­fight is a reminder of how intense­ly per­son­al cook­ing can be, but also how mean­ing­ful it is to cook with and for friends and family.

Discussion Questions