a happy time when you can escape this world, you know, and lose yourself in food

DAVIES: (Laughter) OK. We’re speaking with Anthony Bourdain. He has a new cookbook called “Appetites.” This is an interesting cookbook to look at and to read. You write in it there’s nothing remotely innovative in the recipes. You’re lifting them from imperfect memories of childhood favorites. Why this kind of book?

BOURDAIN: Well, I wanted it to be useful, approachable, reflective of the life I’ve lived over the past eight or nine years as a father, as opposed to a professional trying to dazzle with, you know, pretty pictures and food that’s different than everybody else’s. No, I wanted to make a beautiful cookbook, creative-looking one spoken in honest, straightforward, casual terms that gives the reader reasonable expectations, that encourages them to organize themselves in the way that I’ve found to be useful as a professional.

But as far as the recipes, you know, when I cook at home, it’s with a 9-year-old girl in mind. I mean, she’s who I need to please. And if she’s not happy, I’m not happy. The whole house revolves around her and her friends, so it’s reflective of that. It’s also reflective of, I think, age and all those years in the restaurant business.

Most chefs I know after work do not want to go out to dinner and be forced to think about what they’re eating in a critical or analytical way. They want to experience food as they did as children, in an emotional way, the pure pleasure of that bowl of spicy noodles or even a – you know, a bowl of soup that their mom gave them on a rainy day when they’d been bullied in school. I mean, that’s a happy time when you can escape this world, you know, and lose yourself in food. So these are recipes that hopefully – where I try to evoke those kinds of feelings and emotions.

~ Anthony Bourdain, from an interview in 2016 titled  On ‘Appetites,’ Washing Dishes And The Food He Still Won’t Eat (NPR.org, “Fresh Air“, October 20, 2017)

Bourdain’s cookbook can be found here: Appetites: A Cookbook



  1. Some of my best memories are of the simple meals we had with the family at home. Nothing fancy, just good, simple food.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As I opened this e-mail, I started listening to an Interview with Anthony on “Fresh Air” on WQXR online…that’s a weird coincidence.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes he sure is a foodie and I have seen him on travel and living

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  4. While, on occasion, I love a fancy meal as much as the next guy or gal, it is the home cooking of my grandmother that makes me salivate in recollection…homemade chicken and noodles, fresh cream pies, buttermilk biscuits just out of the oven with fresh butter, home-cured hams that I watched my grandfather nurture for months on end in the smokehouse…these are the meals that warm my heart to this day. Have loved Bourdain and his candor since reading “Kitchen Confidential.” This newest cookbook looks like a must-have. Thanks for another great tip, pal…

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  5. A huge fan, but I’m not sure which foods he “still will not eat” ??? Those comfort foods, though. Universal.

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  6. yes, and this is so refreshing –

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  7. I love this guy – his cooking/travel shows are so intriguing) and will definitely check out this book.

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  8. I don’t know how I missed the Greek Islands episode of Parts Unknown. I watched it twice last week.

    Two things make me happy. My mom’s lentil soup. I smell it when I open their door and I’m 5 again. And when she stands by me still while eating it and pulls my hair away from my face and tucks it behind my ears. I’ll be 45 and she still does it and I LOVE it.

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  9. Anthony’s Bourdain is very talented. He has mega culinary skills as well as ego. His ego is really up there with Trump. I don’t follow him, but hope he is in recovery from his addictions and has a new sense of connection and empathy for others.
    It is a great head shot though 😉

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  10. My mama was a good cook. My daughter is. To cook good is to love cooking. I am not a good cook. I’d love to use the space designated for comment, to say again…thank you for reading my words.

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  11. I like Bourdain’s shows. They offer a lot more than a culinary experience. His writing ability and curiosity about the culture, history and politics of a place make his “food” shows stand out above the rest. He makes most of the other travel/food stars seem one-dimensional by comparison.

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  12. I really like Anthony Bourdain, though I haven’t seen his show in several years (his smile and laugh reach me)…his advice is spot on, good for all, be” honest, straightforward” /// This Sunday morning, so wet and rainy a warm breakfast was made with love …he made my childhood favorite, creamed eggs on toast though I opted to not have the toast because he warmed up a piece of apple pie he made yesterday, he used Jonagold, Spitzenberg and sweet Golden Delicious.(been to the orchard twice with him and once by myself, just this past Monday, apple picking I chose to wear a sweatshirt, jeans and hiking boots which was too hot. as it was a beautiful day sunny and 74 :))!! I added more nutmeg and sprinkled in some cloves to bowl of ingredients he’d already sprinkled with spices …the pie was topped off with Häagen-Dazs Vanilla Bean Ice Cream…the pie was so perfect it melted in my mouth, my taste-buds savored the melody of luscious, deliciousness…the creamed eggs, salted and peppered, yum!! He brought me love…Both of these culinary delights brought back memories and comfort….the creamed eggs made by my beautiful red headed Mom who used lots and lots of butter, always and the apple pie brought back sweet, run, cute Grandma Hattie and her baking and all the times we children played in the apple orchard, happy to go in the cold storage during the heat of the early fall, we’d walk the isle and marvel at how many apples were sorted, boxed and stored for market…leaving the cold storage and passing through the blast door to the outside to be knocked over by the heat, it was as if we’d emerged into an oven…we always took home a box or two of apples, or when family visited we’d be gifted with boxes of apples, pears or peaches depending on the time of season…the smell of the apples mellowing in the coolness of the pantry, intoxicating…

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  13. PS: Yesterday he also made from scratch, a very large pan of Lasagna…some destined for the freezer…gluten free lasagna noodles, his homemade tomato sauce, from tomatoes, herbs and kale he grew,.. zucchini,< not enough left in the garden, the combinations of cheeses, grass fed beef, etc…we both agreed not to purchase that brand of mozzarella as it lacked flavor. We had a busy day…and in an hour and 15 minutes time, several errands, post office (no line so nice) the library drop off window, the grocery store of privilege (ie: the overly expensive one, we the ladies where their pearls) and then the store that had Häagen-Dazs on sale and i bought a lottery ticket…and made it home at 1;01 just in time for the football game kick off…/// this weekend is a time to cozy in although we are going hiking in a bit…will get wet for sure 🙂


  14. Ha! he just picked a gorgeous bouquet of a purple cauliflower and green broccoli from the garden…oh I came home Friday to find him in the kitchen making from scratch cream of mushroom soup! (the mushrooms a freebie from his work) We enjoyed that with a hamburger patty topped with cheese….I made sure to thank his mother for raising such a capable man…

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