Harry became a fabulous cook. It began with a simple indulgence: secret bowls of buttery popcorn that he and his wife, Francie, would share after the children were tucked into bed. The aroma of melting butter, the hot kernels on their tongues, the salt crystals sticking to their lips—it was their own private romantic feast, imbuing their marriage with a new kind of passion. Soon, Harry began to dazzle Francie with luscious bisques and brioches, delectable soufflés, rich risottos, and classic versions of coq au vin that left her breathless.
Their family life came to revolve around the dinner table, where each night Harry’s cooking brought Francie and their four children together for an awe-inspiring and mouthwatering meal. But inevitably the years slip by, and when all but one child has left the house, Harry wins a digital scale in his company’s Holiday Raffle and their happy bubble bursts in a single instant. Harry’s cooking has finally caught up with him. His doctor confirms it: He desperately needs to lose weight.
Terrified of losing him, Francie puts Harry on a strict diet, leaving him eternally frustrated at the table and in the kitchen. When they both realize that he has to take a break from his culinary passions if this diet is to work, Francie begins to cook. Eventually a younger-looking, leaner, and more driven Harry emerges—one so newly committed to his job and his low-carb support group that not only is he no longer in the kitchen, he’s hardly ever at home. Feeling confused by the dynamics of their new relationship, Francie must contend with her need to keep Harry on his diet, and also with the women who have suddenly begun to eye her truly attractive husband. The question now becomes: Will love be enough to keep this marriage together, or will the Atkins Diet ultimately tear Harry and Francie apart?
Pop a pan of cookies into the oven and put up your feet. Cooking for Harry is a deliciously good time.
From the Hardcover edition.
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|Title of eBook: Cooking for Harry|
|Release Date: 02-17-2004|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Crown Publishing Group|
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Cooking for Harry
Chapter OneI did not attend Harry's company's annual Holiday Raffle. Spouses and partners were never invited. Harry's company believed that restricting company-sanctioned gatherings to employees encouraged collegial bonding. This always seemed to me like a euphemism for extramarital affairs, though Harry assured me it wasn't.
"It's just dot-com nonsense, Francie," he said, pulling on his coat and patting the pockets for his keys. "Some business psychologist told them to do it, so they do."
He stood by the door, shifting from foot to foot, jingling his change. He always got nervous before he had to go to a party. "Too many adults walking around unattended," was how he explained it. But everybody in the company had to participate in the Holiday Raffle. You had to sign in with the office manager to prove that you'd been there.
Harry's company was so uptight I wasn't even allowed so say what it was he did, other than "computers." There was more and more talk of the company stock going public, but I wasn't supposed to say that, either. The company was an Internet spin-off of the staid and stodgy company where Harry had worked for nearly twenty years. At forty-three, he'd been the oldest employee to make the leap. Now, at forty-seven, he was the one the twenty-something dot-cowboys were referring to when they whispered, "It wouldn't hurt to have some white hair in on the deal." Enter Harry, familiar as a slice of Wonder Bread in his conservative tie, his wandering hairline, his solid mass of reassurance. The clients signed on the dot-com line. The cowboys high-fived one another over the tops of their cubicles.
"That's the only time they listen to me," Harry com...