5th Anniversary Giveway Day 5: It's Just Me

This is the final day of the 5th Anniversay Giveaway week. I hope you've enjoyed it!

My final essay about the first 5 years of Just Hungry is about, well, me.

During the course of these years, I've sometimes worried about being too all over the place. I have, as I said earlier, tried to concentrate on Japanese food and cooking more or less. But then I do sometimes go off on a tangent and write about something completely different. After posting something like an in-depth comparison of Marmite, Vegemite and Cenovis, I used to wonder if going off course so much would be bad.

I've stopped worrying about that kind of thing now. I've come to realize that the site is born from who I am. I've had a rather complicated, nomadic life so far, and that is reflected in the type of food I'm drawn to. My roots are in Japan, but I also feel that American food, specifically the food in the New York/Long Island area, British food, and Swiss food are 'home cooking' for me too. I know my background is not that typical, so this mix of influences is not going to appeal to a huge audience. But that's OK.

And conversely, I find that I am most drawn to blogs where I can see the person behind it, rather than ones who present some kind of façade that the author thinks will 'sell'. Hopefully, that's a reason for people to stick around and read my words too.

So, on to the final giveaway. You actually have a choice of two things!

Just Hungry 5th Anniversary Giveaway Item 5: Fanny and Johnnie Cradock vintage retro '70s cookbook OR two English-language Japanese cookbooks

Please check the giveaway rules in the first post. Do try to remember to keep it to one comment per item/entry, thanks! (I've noticed that sometimes people seem to get impatient and post the same comment twice. I use a spam-preventing tool called Mollom, which sometimes can cause a short delay between the time your comment is entered and the time it appears. So please wait a bit before submitting another comment.)

Remember: You need to give me your email address (in the email entry area) where I can contact you if you win, your name (or nickname), and your location (country). In addition, for this giveaway only, you must tell me which lot you want, the Fanny Cradock cookbook or the Japanese cookbooks. Comments/entries that don't indicate this will be eliminated from the draw.

Choice no. 1: Vintage Fanny and Johnnie Cradock Cookery Programme book

book-fannyc1.jpg, the book

If you enjoyed my recaps of the BBC programme The Supersizers Go, especially of the 1970s episode, or just like retro food, you'll really enjoy this one. Published in 1970, I gather that this book (which is a compilation of several magazine issues) was the companion to a TV series hosted by Fanny Cradock. I bought this book some years ago when I briefly became obsessed with tracking down Fanny Cradock cookbooks. It wasn't too hard to find them on eBay or the used bookstores back then, but nowadays it's become much more difficult to buy her old cookbooks now for some reason, especially the ones with photos. (You can still get her really awful historical novels fairly easily. I don't recommend them.)

Some pictures from the book (there are more in the Supersizers '70s recap):

Lemon pigs gather ominously around a pastry case trough filled with...poo? (It's not specified what it is...maybe tapenade?)

book-fannyc.jpg, lemon pigs

Tiny dark green snail pots filled with mushroom paste and topped with individual deepfried croutons. I mean, the fiddliness!

book-fannyc2.jpg, littlegreenpots

Nothing says elegant table like aqua-green dyed mashed potato piped into swans made of hard boiled eggs and pipe cleaner necks.

book-fannyc3.jpg, swans

A raw meat and boiled vegetable table decoration. Words fail me.

book-fannyc5.jpg

In all seriousness, the mostly francophile recipes are on the whole not bad; there some OMG moments, but also plenty in there that is actually tasty and not too artery-clogging.

The book is in 'used' condition, but is in pretty good condition for its age. It even has all the adverts and reply-postcard inserts and such.

Choice no. 2: Two Japanese cookbooks in English

book-jcookbooks.jpg

If '70s retro food is not your thing, perhaps these two cookbooks are. Both translated from Japanese, they are written by two of the most popular cookbook authors in Japan. I've written about Japanese Home Cooking by Tokiko Suzuki previously. She is one of the great teachers and I rely on her Japanese books all the time. Harumi's Japanese Cooking by Harumi Kurihara is a modern take on Japanese home cooking. She's popular enough in Japan to have her own Martha Stewart Living style lifestyle magazine called harum_mi (it's a quarterly).

Again, please indicate whether you prefer Fanny Cradock OR the Japanese cookbooks.

This, and all the giveaways, are now closed. Thank you for participating! The winners will be announced later this week!

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