Damn Good Food is the cookbook, memoir, culinary tell-all you've always wished you had but never could find.
I wrote it with Mitch Omer, one of my best friends and a terrific co-author. Also a crazy man, and I mean that literally. This book is the story of how Mitch hurtled through the first 40+ years of his life drinking, drugging, marrying, divorcing, touring with rock 'n roll bands, gaining and losing hundreds of pounds, and eventually losing his mind. It's also the story of how he found it again – along with Cynthia, his true love – and opened a restaurant called Hell's Kitchen, where all his former demons became pure gold.
Here's what you won't find in Damn Good Food: recipes you need a biology degree to decipher or instructions for phallic vertical plating. This is the real stuff: rich Native American porridge, dishes made with elk and antelope, huevos rancheros, homemade peanut butter, and tutorials on how to make the perfect cinnamon roll, pancake, and BLT.
Damn Good Food celebrates food and lunacy, sex and life. It's a great cookbook and a riveting read about a man you may love, loathe, or cry for, but who is absolutely guaranteed to keep you entertained.
I started out wanting this book for Mitch Omer's Sausage Bread recipe, that would be worth the price. Then I dug into his story as told by Ann Bauer. Expecting same old, same old warm fuzzy little chef's memoir, instead I got the story of a man living life full blast, wrestling with reality, compulsively open hearted, and cooking for all he is worth. Nothing about this book is what you'd expect – from recipes that defy fashion and taste great, to writing that literally keeps you flipping the pages.
– Lynne Rossetto Kasper,
host of The Splendid Table®,
public radio's national food show
from American Public Media