Alice B. Toklas – an American in Paris

The Star Tribune has an interesting little write up of a new book on Americans in Paris who went on to popularise French cooking in the United States. Six authors are discussed, including Alice B. Toklas:

There is Alice B. Toklas — bereft at the loss of her twin soul and lifetime partner, Gertrude Stein — living penniless among kerosene fumes in a Paris flat, surrounded by priceless Picassos, but unable, for personal and estate-related reasons, to sell them. In order to pay some bills, she writes “The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook,” the first cookbook-memoir, a gentle, idiosyncratic celebration of cooking and of life with her great love.

You can find out more about The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook here.

Alice B. Toklas and the French culinary tradition

Alice Babette Toklas was born and raised in California. In 1907 she moved to Paris, where she lived with Gertrude Stein, the American writer and art collector, and later to the Bugey, a region in south-eastern France famous for its gastronomy. She and Gertrude Stein worked as volunteers for the American Fund for French Wounded during the First World War and, although both were Jewish, they remained in Nazi-occupied France throughout the Second World War. In addition to keeping one of the most celebrated tables of the twentieth century, Alice B. Toklas also worked as a translator, and both her memoirs and her correspondence were published to great acclaim. The following is an extract from the Alice B. Toklas Cookbook, on the tradition of french cuisine…

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