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Saturday, November 16, 2013

Odds & Ends: Cookbook Edition

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I've recently received a number of cookbooks from publishers and while you'll likely hear about all of them as I cook from them, I thought it might be fun to give a round-up in today's Odds & Ends...especially since cookbooks make great gifts and you're probably starting to think about what you'll be buying for Christmas gifts...or what you might be asking for! For the record, I wasn't asked to blog about any of them, but I always love hearing cookbook reviews and wanted to pass along my thoughts!
Lighten Up America
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1. First up: Cooking Light's Lighten Up, America! The premise? Author Allison Fishmas Task basically took a road trip around the United States in search of classical, regional dishes. She found them...and then created a lighter version of them. Recreating dishes I experience on our travels is one of my favorite things, so I loved the idea behind this cookbook. Like every Cooking Light cookbook I've seen, the pictures are beautiful and the recipes aren't anything complicated. If you love to travel, you might love this book filled with cuisine from across the country. Recipes I can't wait to try: Grilled Vegetable Caprese with Pesto, New Orleans Gumbo, and the Vanilla Cheesecake with Cherry Topping.

A Year Of Holidays
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2. The Pioneer Woman Cooks--A Year of Holidays. This is the first Pioneer Woman cookbook I've owned, but it seems reminiscent of her blogging style. The recipes are indulgent and the introduction to each section in the book makes you feel like you'er sitting down with Ree and listening to her stories as a friend. I love that its celebrated by holiday, making planning for the occasion simple! Recipes I can't wait to try: Lemon Cream Pie Shooters, Watermelon Pico de Gallo, and Burgundy Mushrooms.

Patricia Wells
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3. The French Kitchen Cookbook. While I'd never heard of Patricia Wells prior to receiving this cookbook, a little research (and a look at her gorgeous book) made me realize I was really missing out! Besides the fact that we share a birthplace (Milwaukee, WI!), I love that she's blazed trails in her career (the only woman and only America to be a restaurant critic for a major French publication) and that she describes her cookbook as a "way of life and a lifestyle of food and entertaining". My kind of life! Recipes I can't wait to try: Char-grilled Eggplant Salad with Fresh Mint, Penne with Tomatoes, Rosemary, Olives, Artichokes, and Capers, and the Fig and Almond Tart. 

Emeril's Cooking with Power
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4. Emeril's Cooking with Power. This Emeril Lagasse cookbook focuses on four kitchen appliances: the slow cooker, the multi cooker, the pressure cooker, and the deep fryer. Although I only have one of the four (the slow cooker), I still found myself dying to try a ton of the recipes. I'm also intrigued by the multi cooker and thinking someday when I have a giant kitchen, that might be a good addition to it! I've already made a fabulous slow cooker tomato soup that I'll be sharing with you soon, but other recipes I can't wait to try include the Colombian Chicken, Corn, and Potato Stew, the Jerk Chicken with Rice and Peas, and the Gingered Short Ribs and Carrots. 'Tis slow cooker season after all!

Sparkpeople Cookbook
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5. The Sparkpeople Cookbook. Although I'm not interested in losing weight (ask me again come February when I have bundles of pregnancy pounds to drop!), I appreciate that this cookbook is full of healthy recipes that won't leave you feeling deprived. The book offers tons of extra tips throughout its pages on further lightening the meals and the benefits of certain cooking methods, amongst much more. Recipes I can't wait to try: Grilled Spicy Fish Tacos, Warm and Spicy Banana Waffles, and Dark Chocolate Cake!

What's your favorite cookbook? My cookbook shelves are overflowing lately and I'm hoping I start using them more come 2014!

One Year Ago: Caramel Brownies
Two Years Ago: Crockpot BBQ Beer Chicken
Three Years Ago: Snickers Cookie Cups
Four Years Ago: Upside Down Apple Pie