THE COSTCO CONNECTION: You
were originally planning to write a
memoir for release this month. How did
that morph into a cookbook?
OPRAH WINFREY: I think it’s impossible to do a memoir in a year. I’m
reading Bruce Springsteen’s [Born to
Run]. I think Bruce took six years. And
I see why. Because it takes time and
re;ection. So I called [the publisher]
and said, “I can feel that I’m going to
need more time for a memoir, but I do
have this idea that is memoir-like.” I
didn’t just want to do a book of recipes.
I wanted my story of food, because every
meal triggers stories.
CC: In writing this book, what did
you learn about yourself?
OW: I learned that my story of food
has been a complicated one, and that I’ve
given so much energy to it that, at this
particular time in my life, it’s time to let
it go. All these years I was using food as
my drug, and as my support, and as my
comforter, and that now I just use it as
what it’s supposed to be—life-giving,
satisfying, pleasure, enhancement—in
accordance with where I am in my life.
I ended the book saying that my new
favorite word for myself is “
contentment.” I’ve spent so many years of my
life on the path of creating success and
not actually being able to live in the
moment to appreciate it. I look back at
all of my glorious years on the Oprah
show, but so much of it was numbing to
me because life was coming at such a
fast pace that it was hard to take everything in. And that is why, when I look
back at old shows, sometimes I’m like,
“OK, I know that’s me sitting in the
chair, but I don’t even remember that
show.” Especially when you’ve talked to
I feel now that I’m at a place where I
choose to do what feels right for me. I
get to think about what do I really want
that’s going to satiate, satisfy and
enhance me to the next meal.
CC: You say in the book that it’s possible to come to sane and sustainable
terms with eating. How?
OW: One of the things that has
shifted for me is that counting the
points is the thing. [Winfrey is an
adherent of Weight Watchers, which
allots points to di;erent foods to main-
tain a balanced diet. After she found her
own success with the diet plan, she
bought a ;; percent stake in the com-
pany.] I’ve done every diet possible, and
lots of people are on some version of no
carbs. We’ve become the no-carb cul-
ture. No carbs doesn’t work for me.
Every time I’ve tried it just ends up in
some kind of bad way.
I remember once when all of us were
on a no-carb diet. My entire team. We
were in the car on the way to our Oscar
rehearsal. And in the car everybody was
getting on everybody’s last one-half of a
nerve. There were arguments starting,
and we’re arguing over little things and
nothing, and finally somebody says,
“You need a biscuit.” I remember pulling over to ;-Eleven, and we all stopped
to get some crackers. So no carbs doesn’t
work for me after a while. I get so irritable and my brain doesn’t function.
CC: Where did the recipes in the book
OW: Some of the recipes are mine.
And a lot of them are culled from chefs
that I’ve had. But I also do a lot of cooking myself. And what I probably cook
better than I cook anything is combinations of pastas and mixing different
stu; in pastas.
My favorite pasta dish [in the book]
actually is inspired from when I went
tru;e hunting. Yes, I went tru;e hunting. I’m a tru;e connoisseur. I am the
only person you probably know who
travels with my own tru;e salt in my
bag and something called tru;e zest.
There’s a new product—ya’ll should sell
it at Costco—called tru;e zest, where
you can get the ;avor of fresh-shaved
tru;es in a bottle.
he is, perhaps,
the most famous
woman in the
world. Her rise from
poverty in Kosciusko,
Mississippi, to billionaire
media magnate is the
stu; of legend. She is a
television, ;lm and stage
producer, actress and
philanthropist, but mil-
lions perhaps know her
best as a talk show host.
She is Oprah Winfrey.
Her new book, out this
month, speaks to a topic
she has long devoured:
food. In Food, Health,
and Happiness: ;;; On-Point Recipes for Great
Meals and a Better Life,
Winfrey o;ers delicious
and healthful recipes,
along with some side
servings of personal
anecdotes. She took time
from her busy schedule
to discuss her life and
culinary loves with The
Connection, in a phone
conversation from her
home in Maui.
Oprah is a truf;e
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