Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie

Our Food Editor Peggy Wolff's new anthology of Midwestern Writers on Food

Our beloved Food Editor’s new book is garnering rave reviews!  A sketch from the publisher:

“There is writing about food and then there is food writing which reflects life's joys and travails, people, places, and moments in time. Peggy Wolff’s new literary collection of memoirs and personal essays Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie offers up just that from the heartland of this country. 

With its corn by the acre, beef on the hoof, Quaker Oats, and Kraft Mac n’ Cheese, the Midwest eats pretty well and feeds the nation on the side. But there’s more to the midwestern kitchen and palate than the farm food and sizable portions the region is best known for beyond its borders. 

It is to these heartland specialties, from the heartwarming to the downright weird, that Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie invites the reader. The volume brings to the table an illustrious gathering of thirty midwestern writers with something to say about the gustatory pleasures and peculiarities of the region. Its generous helpings of laughter, culinary confession, and information make an irresistible literary feast.

From Iowa's elephant ear-sized pork tenderloin sandwiches, to Door County fish boils, and Cincinnati Five-Way Chili. And don't forget sweet corn, funnel-cake, jello molds, and all of those flaky crust, sweet slice of heaven pies. Just as important and in some instances the central themes are powerful memories: July 4th concerts, first love and apple pie.

One story tells of a farm wife, working as hard as the men-folk out in the fields to serve up a four course dinner followed by supper, who quietly endures simmering emotions that she never allows to boil over. These and many more foods and memories are what make this one must-have book for those of us who know that the best food writing is never just about the food. It is, always, the story behind it.” 

Just some of the Reviews:

That very American impulse to claim ownership — and to define our separate experiences through food — is on full display in Peggy Wolff’s FRIED WALLEYE AND CHERRY PIE: Midwestern Writers on Food.Heartland natives will embrace the recipes, if not the remembrances of State Fair corn dogs and Lake Michigan fish boils, German kuchen and tamales eaten on Chicago’s Maxwell Street, a.k.a. “the Ellis Island of the Midwest.”  Jenny Rosenstrach, New York Times Sunday Book Review.

“As alternately beloved and disdained as flyover country itself, Midwestern food stretches far beyond the fried walleye and cherry pie that make up the title of this expansive new collection. And as edited by Tribune contributor Peggy Wolff, the volume exemplifies not just the culinary eclecticism of a dozen-odd states and their Great Lakes, high plains, river valleys and deep woods, but also the scope of the authors' approach to their subject matter." Martha Bayne, Printers Row Journal, Chicago Tribune. 

“'Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie' skips sugary sentimentality for matter-of-fact portraits of the region and its people. [Wolff’s] contributors' thoughts fall not on modernist wonders... but on memories, sweet, bitter and odd. …thoughtful, addicting…” Good Eating, Chicago Tribune Chris Borrelli.

Available at Amazon in paperback or Kindle version...

Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie, by Peggy Wolff   



Peggy Wolff’s stories on what, where, and with whom people eat have appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Tribune's SUNDAY Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, Orlando Sentinel, and more. Her new book, Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie, a compilation of food writers on Midwestern Food, comes out in November 2013. 

Peggy Wolff