Whether you go to farmer’s markets or enjoy your own bounty, you are sure to find a great recipe among the 336 seasonal recipes in this 256-page cookbook. Since this is a Taste of Home book you also know there will be a feast for your eyes.
Organized by season and ingredient, each recipe features a beautiful full color photograph as well as a space to write in your own notes for future reference (just not in the library book please).
Choose from Spring, Early to mid Summer, or Late Summer to Fall time frame, and then pick your vegetable. The large variety of recipes continues offering choices from main dishes, salads, soups and side dishes. For asparagus alone there are 11 choices, ranging from Tangy Asparagus Potato Salad, or Asparagus with Lemon Sauce to Asparagus, Brie and Parmesan Ham Crostini. The recipes offer family friendly choices and many that would be great for entertaining.
I made the Swiss Chard Bean Soup (page 65) for my family using carrots, zucchini, yellow squash, onions, tomatoes and Swiss chard from our garden. It was a big hit. I also made the Mini Carrot Cake Tortes (page 150) that I can only describe as decadent!
This also includes a special instructional section on canning along with several recipes for jams, jellies, pickles and more. This would be a great cookbook for anyone who would enjoy some new recipes to use up their harvest.
Today we have Shari’s review of Vintage Cakes: Timeless Recipes for Cupcakes, Flips, Rolls, Layer, Angel, Bundt, Chiffon and Icebox Cakes for Today’s Sweet Tooth by Julie Richardson:
This cookbook is a charming collection of more than 50 re-mastered classic cake recipes spanning a century. It includes rolled cakes, bundts, chiffon and icebox cakes. Using found journals, 1920’s magazines and unsolicited recipes, the author retooled each recipe using the best ingredients and utilizing up-to-date techniques.
The chapters are divided by the type of cake, such as Hasty Cakes when time is short, Everyday Cakes for no particular event, Little and Light Cakes, Layer Cakes, and Party Cakes.
Also included are recipes for all the fillings, frostings and icings.
This cookbook would be enjoyed by anyone looking to recall the cakes of yesteryear.
The recipes that will be tested in my kitchen are:
- Pearl’s Chocolate Macaroon Cake
- Boston Cream Pie-lets
- Malted Milk Chocolate Cupcakes
- German Chocolate Roll (especially looking forward to trying this!)
Pure Vanilla is a cookbook about chocolate. Just kidding it’s all about vanilla. I learned that vanilla beans come from orchids, and that they have to be hand pollinated. I also learned that it takes forever to get the beans to look and taste the way we think of vanilla beans, so that’s why vanilla is so expensive. After learning all about vanilla I was ready to try some recipes.
I made Ultimate Vanilla Cupcakes and brought them into the library for my coworkers to try. My whole house smelled like vanilla and it was incredible. I used mini muffin tins and to make mini cupcakes; each one a tiny mouthful of vanilla flavored heaven. The cupcakes were well received and I plan on making a few other recipes in the book. I would recommend this book to anyone that likes the taste and smell of vanilla. This is a must read book!
The book called to me from the Cook Book display in the library. I took it home and loved the look of all of the dishes. I picked out a few and tried them.
My favorites are:
Crispy Little Calzone
Chicken Cutlets with Crunchy Coating
Fresh Tuna With Onion Compote
Sweet and Sour Carrots
All the food was good, but I was sold on the book when I turned to Chapter 11 and found the Baby / Toddler food section with recipes that adults will enjoy eating. It is a great section.
I tried and enjoyed:
Alphabet and Vegetable Soup with Mozzarella Dice
Fusilli With Creamy Cheese Sauce
Creamy Tomato Soup
I recommend this cook to everyone who likes Italian food, or is looking to try some easy authentic recipes.
This cook book is full of a wide variety of vegetables. It gives history and properties of vegetables as well as providing recipes. I loved the setup of the book and learning about all of the different vegetables. It is a little dense and long, but that’s because the book is so comprehensive. I recommend this book to anyone interested in adding a greater variety of vegetables to their diet.
Since this is a cooking blog I have to believe that this is a blog about food and drink too, so with that in mind I’m reviewing one of the coolest places I have ever been to in Denver. I took my husband and some of our friends on a Brews Cruise for his birthday. (Our tour guide Brent was fantastic!) We went to four local breweries in Denver. He sampled several beers while I enjoyed some awesome root beer. (I was the DD so I did not imbibe. No loss since I’m not a beer fan.) All of the breweries that we visited were fun, but the best by far was Wit’s End!
They are a nanobrewery and you can only buy their beer in their fantastic tap room. They don’t sell it at a local store so you have to make the trip out, all the while feeling very cool for being downtown, and hang out with live people. You can’t just drink on your couch, but rather you must be social and in a public place. It was so much fun even for me; a non-beer drinker. I recommend visiting this brewery to anyone that likes any of the following: playing board games (they have a nice supply), trying new beers, supporting local business, being the cool person in your social group and taking your friends somewhere that no one else knows about, or just plain drinking good beer.
ed2go is a resource for taking online classes. People with a Douglas County Library card can take online classes for free! (other people are paying for these classes, but because the library is a subscriber you can use your DCL card to take the class at no charge). When I found out about it I had to take a class. There is a cooking class so I signed up right away. I’m half way through the class and I really like it. The instructor, a licensed dietitian, breaks down the subject of low fat cooking into several lessons. She covers the basics of how fat affects the body, and how to make over recipes. In each lesson she shows a recipe and then talks about how to make a lower fat version. It’s great. She even talks about the reasons behind the ingredients and why the fat is important. So far I’m really enjoying it. I will report again when the class is done to let you know how it’s went, but I will say so far this has been a fun experience.
Ed2go offers lots of classes and not just on cooking. Click here to check out the library’s webpage and to sign up for a class.
Is there anything better than breakfast for dinner? I love it. I could alternate eggs and pasta every day and be totally happy…Obviously there has to be wine and chocolate too. This book is cool! The pictures are great and the variation on traditional breakfast food to make them more dinner appealing is interesting. Some of the results are better than others and this is definitely not a health food book.
What I liked:
Avocado Cream Sauce page 23
Greek Baked Eggs page 35
Tomato Peach Jam page 79
Grapefruit Herb Soda page 115 (YUMMY!!!)
What was a flop:
Habanero Cheddar Bread Pudding page 82 (I’m not sure this is the book’s fault. I usually hate bread pudding because of the texture. This was both bland and mushy. Maybe it was my fault. If you make this at home and it’s fantastic let me know.
What I was scared to try:
Doughnut Fudge Sundaes page 150. Basically you get a glazed doughnut with chocolate icing and sprinkles, then put a scoop of ice-cream on top of the doughnut, then drizzle with fudge sauce and whipped cream. The picture is pretty, but I’m getting a toothache just typing out the ingredients.
Overall I think this is a must try cookbook!
Each chapter in Return to Sunday Dinner is a full menu for a Sunday dinner. At our house I cook a “traditional” Sunday dinner every weekend. We sit around and really eat for a long time, enjoying many different dishes and even dessert. What makes it traditional for my husband is that I include meat, starch, veg, and some kind of bread. I love the look and feel of the book. The ideas for the meals are fantastic, because each menu has everything including dessert. We tried several recipes and the results were a little disappointing. The molasses Baked Beans on page 254 never really set up. They were watery and a little crunchy. (Maybe it was my mistake, or living at high altitude, but we didn’t end up eating them.) Undeterred I tried Double Skillet Cornbread on page 170 (bland and gritty) we did not eat these either. I also did Glazed Baby Carrots page 10 (the glaze was thin and a little too citrusy), and Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes page 6 (EXCELLENT!)
These recipes were not the best, with the exception of the potatoes. I’m still glad that I checked out the book, because it reminded me how much I love good glazed baby carrots and homemade baked beans. I’m currently in the market for some recipes for those so if you have a good one put the recipe in the comments section.
101 Recipes You Can’t Live Without was made by Prevention Magazine so it has a lot of good health information in the front of the book. It talks about healthy eating as an alternative to popping pills for a healthier lifestyle, which I agree with. A healthy diet should be attempted before you give up and just take pills to lower cholesterol or raise fiber intake. The book also breaks down the recipes in the front for the health benefits they provide. Example: Calcium Rich, Carotenoid Rich, Folate Rich, etc… This is a great idea and a fantastic guide for people trying to change their diet.
Many of the recipes are complicated, but if you are spending more time thinking about your diet and are interested in trying new things this might be the book for you. I’m a vegetarian so I didn’t eat Grilled Steak with Peperonata Sauce on page 164 but my husband liked it. I did put the sauce over polenta and it was good. Lots of flavor and pretty colors. Overall I liked the book.