For the past year and a half, I have been consumed with the writing, photographing, and editing of my second book, Little Bites. This week my coauthor, Sarah, and I will receive the page proofs- seeing for the first time all of our hard work come together. I am simply beside myself with anticipation. This book feels extremely personal- it is how our families eat, how we feed our kids, and our approach to food. Food is personal. Food is passion and love. Food provides both sustenance and joy…and in the best case, both.
Writing about food has turned into an intense passion…but the amount of work that goes into a cookbook is astounding. From the recipe development to the testing, from the styling to the photography, not to mention the copious amounts of writing….it is a ton of work. When I come across a gorgeous cookbook now, I have so much respect and admiration for the author. It is no small feat. That is why I am so excited to bring you this giveaway for two amazing cookbooks. I am very selective about the books that make it into my kitchen, but both of these have earned a place on my shelf, that is to be sure.
The fact that these cookbooks are both published by Roost, my beloved publisher, is part of their appeal., because Roost produces books that feel like so much more than just cookbooks- they are filled with personality and stories, not just recipes- and I love that. Plus the look and feel is amazing- quality paper, hard covers. Quite simply, Roost publishes books that they wholeheartedly believe in…and you can feel it when you pick up one of their titles. To be included among the ranks of their talented authors still blows my mind. But enough of that…let’s get to the good stuff.
First up, At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen by Amy Chaplin. I am finding this book incredibly useful as it both teaches you how to cook with whole foods, and provides you with amazing recipes. Part One of the book is all about stocking your pantry- how and why to use ingredients- and cooking from your pantry. I love this section as I am always looking to expand my knowledge of whole foods, plus the photographs of Amy’s pantry made me absolutely green with envy! I especially loved reading “A Week of Meals in My Kitchen,” which details Amy’s approach to daily cooking, including when she fits in the prep work. I appreciate how she makes whole food cooking a priority while practicing efficiency.
Part Two is all recipes, and they are so vibrant, nutritious and delicious sounding. I was in a soup kind of mood this past week and I tried the Simple Red Lentil Soup (which is actually found in the pantry section). I added a few things- this book inspires creativity in the kitchen- and the result was warm, spicy, and comforting. My kids loved it, as did my husband. To turn up the spice factor for him, I topped the soup with red Thai chili peppers from my garden, deseeded and thinly sliced. I also sprinkled a few kale chips on top (loosely based on this recipe). For dessert I made a batch of Cherry Pecan Cookies, using cacao nibs instead of cherries. I also doubled down on the nuts, adding ground almonds to the batter, along with the pecans. The cookies were crisp on the outside, while remaining soft, chewy and nutty on the inside. They were gone in one sitting! I’m excited to cook my way through the rest of this book. It will easily provide us with nutritious, warm, comforting meals throughout the colder months.
Secondly, I have to tell you about Quench, the latest title from Ashley English. I so admire Ashley as an author. She consistently turns out beautiful, useful, inventive books at an awe-inspiring pace. I don’t know how she does it! Quench is just beautiful- I have been taking it to bed each night, flipping through the pages and dreaming of making every single drink. I’ve been promising myself for ages that I would learn to make a few signature cocktails, but I never seem to get around to it. I’m hoping this book will change that!
The point is that both of these books have me excited to be in the kitchen, and that is the sign of a great cookbook. I can only hope Little Bites will inspire the same sentiment. It feels like such a long wait for my own book launch (July 2015- that is like a lifetime away!) but in the meantime, I’d love to give away a copy of these two books to one lucky winner. Leave a comment here letting me know what’s cooking in your kitchen during this lovely fall season, and I’ll draw a winner next week.
**Giveaway is now closed**