Cookbook author, wife of Tad Friend and food editor for the Times magazine Amanda Hesser has a history of logrolling. Some serious culinojournalistic contretemps occurred when she gave Jean George Vongerichten's Spice Market three stars back in 2004 BB (Before Bruni) seemingly as a thank you for the cheery blurb the chef lent to her book Cooking for Mr. Latte. An acrimonious squall ensued. The Times was forced to print a sheepish Editor's Note and Hesser, who was seen as the heir apparent to the critic's post William Grimes recently vacated, was remanded to the Magazine. And now she's back, baby! In hot water, that is.
This week's Book Review included yet another sheepish editorial note.
Correction: June 10, 2007, Sunday The Cooking roundup last Sunday, written by Amanda Hesser, included a review of Patricia Wells's ''Vegetable Harvest.'' In 1999, Wells contributed a jacket blurb for Hesser's book ''The Cook and the Gardener.'' The Book Review has a policy against assigning a review in those circumstances, but by the time Hesser told editors about the blurb, the issue had already gone to press. Had the editors known of the conflict, Wells's book would not have been included.
Now all we have to do is wait for a laudatory article about author Nancy Harmon Jenkins who wrote the other blurb on the back of "The Cook and the Gardener"—or perhaps we'll just have to settle for this 2004 paean to her daughter, New York City chef Sara Jenkins.