Twain's Feast

Twain's Feast Cover

Twain's Feast

Searching for America's Lost Foods in the Footsteps of Samuel Clemens

By Andrew Beahrs

Penguin Books, Paperback, 9780143119340, 323pp.

Publication Date: October 25, 2011

One young food writer's search for America's lost wild foods, from New Orleans croakers to Illinois prairie hens, with Mark Twain as his guide.

In 1879, Mark Twain paused during a European tour to compose a fantasy menu of the American dishes he missed the most. A true love letter to American food, the menu included some eighty specialties, from Mississippi black bass to Philadelphia terrapin. Andrew Beahrs chooses eight of these regionally distinctive foods, retracing Twain's footsteps as he sets out to discover whether they can still be found on American tables. Weaving together passages from Twain's famous works and Beahrs's own adventures, this travelogue-cum-culinary-history takes us back to a bygone era when wild foods were at the heart of American cooking.

About the Author
Andrew Beahrs is the author of Strange Saint, a companion novel to the Sin Eaters. His fiction and essays have appeared in Gastronomica, The Writer's Chronicle, Virginia Quarterly Review, Alligator Juniper, and other journals. He lives in Berkeley with his wife and son.