It's the Cider and Doughnuts Edition

Greetings and welcome to the Cider and Doughnuts Edition of You Are What You Read.

Before we get to that, a big You Are What You Read thank you to Diane H for the offering of taffy. Thanks for thinking of those of us Left Behind. We appreciate it.

Also heads up! There will be no You Are What You Read for the next two weeks. I will be skittering around Midtown attending Publisher’s Spring (aah! Spring!) Previews. If you see me, make sure you say hey.

What could be more traditional than the Autumnal Outing of Cider and Doughnut Purchasing? I mean, once you manage to get those crops in of course. Business before pleasure People!

This is a perfect pairing. Doughnuts made with cider have a nice tender crumb due to the acid in the cider. And well, rinsing that fatty sugary goodness down with cider?

That’s a pretty terrific combo.

Did you realize this is not some ancient ritual but a fairly recent phenom?

Making doughnuts is not a weekend morning toss off. A proper doughnut takes time and planning. Firstly, a yeast dough must be made and left to proof and rise. Then, that dough needs to be punched down, rolled out and cut out into the preferred shape (cruller? circle? holes!). All the while, you are keeping your eye on the ticking time bomb that is the giant vat of boiling oil that you have going on your stove. Once it reaches proper temp you will then lovingly and oh, so carefully ease those bits of dough into the hot oil where it will splatter all over your kitchen, burn you with grease roughly the same temperature as molten lava in places you never knew you had exposed and the smell will linger for days.

Not much fun is it People? Not the way you want to spend your leisure time after all that Harvesting is it?

Here comes the Savior of many a Fall Weekend, Adolph Levitt. Adolph is the inventor of the modern day doughnut making machine. He figured out how to plop the perfect circle of dough into hot oil, and have the machine flip them at just the right time. This was such a social phenom that when he set up a demo in Times Square he literally stopped traffic.

Levitt was also a sort of marketing genius. He realized that his was not the only machine to make a big change to the landscape. Cars were just coming in to popular use and excursion driving was becoming a Thing. Levitt started selling his contraption, along with the mixes necessary to make the doughnuts to Farm Stands, where they joined to already for sale cider. Think of it! Purchasing food that you drive up to a stand, order, pay for, and then be on your way.The original drive-thru (sort of anyway).

So thanks Adolph! Thanks for those delicious bits of fried dough that is oh so lovely to wash down with some achingly cold cider.

If you’re hankering to learn more about Adolph, donuts and cider, there’s a great piece on NPR for you all to dive into.

This week we have some pretty, clowns (shudder), a reunion and a memoir.

Let us begin!

Diane, forever reading pretty with A Place to Call Home by James Farmer III. “This new book has beautifully captured rooms, table settings and gardens that are more of a traditional design. The blend of new with antique and vintage pieces brings a warmth and a comfortable feel to the rooms. The rooms pictured offer a realistic direction in decorating and make me believe they were not perfectly staged for a photo shoot.”

Miss Anna of the CL is here talking about clowns. Trust that this is not the sort of clown you’d hire for your kid’s birthday. “After over a month (I even had to buy my own copy!) I have finished the beast that is It by Stephen King. This was my first King novel and boy was I not ready for the mind games he plays on his readers. Some people have seen the 1990 mini-series starring Tim Curry as the Pennywise, the evil clown. Some people have seen the new movie. However, those who have read the book know the true terror it brings. shiver I’d strongly recommend grabbing a Mass Market edition of this one since at a little over 1,000 pages, it can be difficult to travel with!”

Kaitlin from the Rock is here this week. Always a reason for great cheer! “Hellooo! I recently finished reading The Lying Game, by Ruth Ware. I was totally hooked--it was one of those books that was just what I needed at that time. It's creepy in a psychological thriller way, and there were twists all the way to the end. Just when I thought I figured it out, she threw me for a loop...and then another loop....and then another. Isa and her three high school friends reunite years later when one of them texts the desperate words 'I need you.' We come to find out that, right near their school, human remains are discovered...and this does not bode well for the group. I don't want to say too much, but I definitely recommend this book if you like to have some disturbing reading in your life!”

Sweet Ann just finished The Best of Us: A Memoir by Joyce Maynard. “This memoir is one of the most honest memoirs that I have ever read. It tells the story of Joyce, famous author and journalist finding the love of her life in her later fifties. She had been married before and had grown children. She meets Jim who is also divorced with grown children who are a bit estranged from him. Joyce and Jim believe they will just date, but they end up getting married and though there are adjustments in the beginning they are very happy. When Jim will experiences back pain a visit to the doctor reveals the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. Ms. Maynard shares all with the reader; at times she has the reader chuckling along with them, questioning their decisions and then feeling their fight for his life. This is a difficult situation but it many ways it was helpful to people going through cancer treatments and for people finding happiness even if it is not for as long as one hoped.”

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