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The Cookbook Season in Review

Most cookbooks launch in the autumn & early winter, to get us geared up for holiday cooking, and while I don’t have a cookbook of our own to share with you this season, I am excited to share my top picks. Perhaps these are gifts for family or friends, or even for yourself!

Entertaining:
Gatherings: Bringing People Together with Food
Jan Scott, Julie Van Rosendaal
Whitecap Books, 2014

Everything you need to plan and host a perfect dinner party with a relaxed approached. Jan & Julie take the stress out of hosting!

Beverages:
Caesars: The Essential Guide to Your Favourite Cocktail
Clint Pattemore, with food recipes by Connie deSousa & John Jackson
Appetite by Random House, 2014

The ultimate Canadian cocktail, no one can deny their weakness for a Caesar (essential for New Year’s Brunch!) and chefs Connie & John of CHARCUT fame in Calgary (and who worked at the Owl’s Nest, where the Caesar was invented) add tasty accompanying recipes.

International:
Mexico: The Cookbook
Margarita Carrillo Arronte
Phaidon, 2014

This tome of Mexican cooking is both comprehensive and approachable, and each recipe lists its region of origin, setting out a pattern of ingredients and cooking styles. Anyone in possession of this book can truly get to know Mexican cooking in a way never imagined.

Ingredient:
Pucker: A Cookbook for Citrus Lovers
Gwendolyn Richards
Whitecap Book, 2014

Calgary author Gwendolyn captures the tartness of citrus dishes perfectly for those of us who can appreciate citrus as essential in the kitchen. Her Chewy Lemon Cookies started this citrus-stalking, and I can attest to how fantastic they are!

Vegetables:
Plenty More: Vibrant Vegetable Cooking from London’s Ottolenghi
Yotam Ottolenghi
Appetite for Random House, 2014

This book is NOT just for vegetarians – it will change the way you prepare, serve and LOVE your vegetables. Sumptuous photography and accessible ingredients and techniques will have you racing around the produce department filling your cart to the brim.

Gifts:
Handmade Gifts from the Kitchen: More than 100 Culinary Inspired Presents to Make & Bake
Alison Walker
Appetite for Random House, 2014

Giving homemade gifts from the kitchen has become increasingly popular, with the rise of food allergies and intolerances – now you can give and share, knowing what ingredients you are using. Quaint packaging ideas give that sense of special to anything you might create.

Confectionary:
A La Mere de Famille: Recipes from the Beloved Parisian Confectioner
Julien Merceron
Chronicle Books, 2014

An absolutely gorgeous book that transports you to Paris, and also takes you back to being 9-years-old, wide-eyed at a counter laden with little cakes and candies. Even if you never intend to make a thing, this cookbook is like going a little French holiday.

Comfort:
The Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers Cookbook: More than 100 Heart-warming Seasonal Recipes for You
Sharon Hapton
Appetite for Random House, 2014

What is more nurturing than soup? And after a decadent holiday season, we can all use a little comfort from a delicious bowl of soup, and the spirit of care is felt even more so when you recognize that Soup Sisters hosts numerous soup-based fundraising events to benefit those in need.


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