Billie Breslin has traveled far from her home in California to take a job at Delicious!, New York’s most iconic food magazine. Away from her family, particularly her older sister, Genie, Billie feels like a fish out of water—until she is welcomed by the magazine’s colorful staff. She is also seduced by the vibrant downtown food scene, especially by Fontanari’s, the famous Italian food shop where she works on weekends. Then Delicious! is abruptly shut down, but Billie agrees to stay on in the empty office, maintaining the hotline for reader complaints in order to pay her bills.

To Billie’s surprise, the lonely job becomes the portal to a miraculous discovery. In a hidden room in the magazine’s library, Billie finds a cache of letters written during World War II by Lulu Swan, a plucky twelve-year-old, to the legendary chef James Beard... MORE

Get Ruth’s Words in your inbox. Sign up for the e-newsletter here.

2014 Gift Guide, Day Three

Truly Fabulous Fruitcake I know, I know - everybody hates fruitcake. But not this one. Baked to order of locally sourced all-organic ingredients, this is the fruitcake you've always longed for. No red and green cherries - just lots of great dried fruit and nuts (it weighs two and a half pounds.) Robin McKay first made these fruitcakes for her...

Read more | 0 comments

2014 Gift Guide, Day Two

One Great Apron If you're going to wear an apron, it should do more than simply look good. The Contra Apron, does. Made of waxed cotton, it's heavy, water-resistent, comes in three colors and has a pocket exactly where you want one. Looks pretty good too! Tilit makes aprons for all the coolest restaurants (Blue Hill, Empellon, Shuko, Hungry Cat,...

Read more | 1 comments

2014 Gift Guide: Day One

This year, it seems, everyone is in a pickle: fermentation is all the rage. But the truth is, pickles are pretty easy. Sauerkraut, on the other hand, presents a challenge. You need to weight the cabbage down, a trick most home-fermenters accomplish by jerry-rigging a tippy tower of bowls. There’s also the problem of finding the right vessel: even a...

Read more | 0 comments