Keith Corbin talks ‘California Soul’ at L.A. Times Book Club

Chef Keith Corbin will join the LA Times Book Club tonight (August 23) to discuss his memoir, “California Soul: An American Epic of Cooking and Survival.”

Corbin will chat with Times Food editor Daniel Hernandez at 7 p.m. Pacific Time at the ASU California Center in the historic downtown Herald Examiner Building. This book club evening is also available virtually.

You can watch it live on YouTube, Twitter or Facebook. Sign up for Eventbrite for live viewing links and autographed books.

In his new book, Corbin talks about success, failure, family and addictions, and how he created his version of California soul food in Los Angeles.

Author Jervey Tervalon said: “When Corbin writes about growing up in a world rife with drugs, guns and gangs, it burns with the intensity of the best pulp fiction. “But it’s not fiction – it’s the life he lived.”

Chef Keith Corbin portrait on green background.

Chef Keith Corbin

(Katrina Frederick / For The Times)

Corbin’s young life as a drug dealer landed him in prison, but that turned out to be the first chapter of the story rather than the end. “California Soul” is about how he suddenly found his passion for cooking.

He said he wasn’t looking for a career in the kitchen when he went to work for Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson at their Watts neighborhood restaurant, Locol. He needed a job and heard about a new restaurant in his rented old neighborhood Watts.

“I just got home from prison. I was fired from my other job. It’s about paying the bills,” Corbin said in conversation with Laurie Ochoa at The Times Test Kitchen.

During his visit to the kitchen, Corbin created and shared a recipe for Vegan California Gombo from the menu at Alta Adams, the restaurant he now co-owns in West Adams.

Chef Keith Corbin cuts onions in the test kitchen.

Chef Keith Corbin prepares ingredients in the LA Times Test Kitchen.

(Katrina Frederick / For The Times)

“California Soul” is the LA Times Book Club’s August selection.

In September, we’re reading “Doctor Moreau’s Daughter” by best-selling novelist Silvia Moreno-Garcia. Get tickets.

Sign up for the LA Times Book Club newsletter to be part of our community book club. We’ll keep you updated with the latest readings, discussions, giveaways, and live events. Keith Corbin talks ‘California Soul’ at L.A. Times Book Club

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