Savoring Story: A Food and Story Making Workshop

Woman looking at magazine about food

Class Dates

November 15, 2019


Dunbar Pavilion



Course Instructor(s)

If you are interested in food writing, this Community Classroom Cultural Immersion will provide you with a chance to join teacher, writer, and artist Melani “Mele” Martinez  for a three hour workshop. 

This workshop will explore the connections between food and language to discover how food work translates into narrative work. Students will share a hearth full of both flavor and story. “Recipes have a story arc,” and “’like a short story, a good recipe can put us in a delightful trance,” writes Bee Wilson. In “The Pleasures of Reading Recipes,” Wilson explores the narrative qualities of food preparation and recipe writing. In her lecture, “We Eat What We Are,” folklorist Maribel Alvarez says food is such an important part of our lives that it “penetrates our speech in the form of metaphor.” She shares the claim of anthropologist Mary Douglas—we must look at food as a system of communication, as something that is intrinsically symbolic. 

In short excerpts, students will read famed food writers like Anthony Bourdain and Ruth Reichl as well as lesser-recognized food story-tellers who have contributed songs, prayers, or those little recipe boxes tucked away in our pantries for generations. Together, we will make food and create story, mingling the five senses in this hands-on, metaphor-building writing course.

Readings and Syllabus

Possible artifacts the instructor will use in this workshop:

  • Excerpts from Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain.
  • Excerpts from Tender at the Bone chapter, “The Queen of Mold” by Ruth Reichl
  • Excerpts from “Crying in H Mart” by Michelle Zauner.
  • Excerpts from “Sentences that End with Food” by Joe Watson
  • “There’s No Tortillas” by Lalo Guerrero
  • Excerpts from Put an Egg On It mag– various authors
  • My grandmother’s recipe box


This workshop is sold out. For waiting list information, contact Kerstin Miller at 520-621-5111 or

Refunds are available and need to be requested by 4 p.m. on Thursday, November 14.

To drop this workshop, contact Kerstin Miller at 520-621-5111 or A $25 administrative fee per cancellation will apply.

Location & Parking

This class meets at the Dunbar Pavilion at 325 W. 2nd Street, Tucson, Arizona 85705

Parking is free in the parking lot directly south of the Dunbar Pavilion.