While I have spilled gallons of virtual ink over the shameless self-promotion of my new book, Cooking Dirty, one thing I haven't yet managed to tell anyone? What the damnable beast is actually about. What, in fact, someone willing to lay down a little dough might get for their hard-earned dollars.
Yeah, that's a fairly big oversight on my part. I've shown the book itself. I've shown off my own smirking face in a kind of meta-orgy of blown covers and uncovered secrets. I've ruthlessly pimped the launch party (July 1, 5:30 p.m. at Katie Mullen's) and linked through to what lots of other people have had to say about the thing. But I've yet to say much of anything about what one will find between the covers of Cooking Dirty should they choose to crack it.
Obviously, it's about food. In particular, the cooking of it at a professional level and the often wonderful, sometimes terrible things that result from sticking four or five or ten poorly socialized men together for hours at a stretch in a small steel box filled with knives and fire.
Those of you who've been faithfully reading my columns and blogs and reviews and weird, ranting, 3 a.m. screeds for any amount of time will not be surprised at all to hear that it is mostly about me (because ain't it always?), but might be slightly shocked to hear that it is also about many of the geniuses, madmen and goats I worked with over the years -- the guys who trained me, the ones who merely tolerated me, the ones I miss now, badly enough sometimes to have written a book almost entirely populated by them.
I was going to include a little excerpt here, just so those of you who might still be on the fence could get a taste for what you'll be buying with your pesos -- but turns out that NPR did a piece on the book today and included a massive excerpt on its website, saving me the trouble of transcribing it myself. Click the highlight above to check it out.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.