Vivid, humorous and unsentimental, Sophie's portrait of modern Puglia, still steeped in old ways, is a delicious treat.
My first thought on reading A Curious Absence of Chickens was that Jane Grigson, the best cookery writer in my lifetime, would have been so proud of her daughter. Sophie Grigson has written twenty-odd excellent cookbooks, but I think this is the best of them. It is her first book for a decade and was obviously driven by a real love of her subjects, which are Puglia, people and food. It is witty, informative, fascinating and stuffed full of recipes you want to cook.
OMFG! This beautiful book is transporting me there. I can't put it down. And the lack of chickens... I never bloody noticed!