Food Friday: two new cookbooks

Thanks to everyone for your lasagna suggestions. I don’t have any new recipes today, but I’ve got a recommendation for two new cookbooks. I read both on my Kindle via my local library – not my favorite format for cookbooks, but it’s hard to argue with free. (The new Kindle Fire and the Nook would probably be much better suited, with their larger, color screens, or an iPad, etc.) if your library has a partnership with Amazon/Overdrive, you may be able to read these for free too – and remember, you don’t have to have a Kindle; there are Kindle apps available for most smart phones and computers.

Putting Up: A Year-Round Guide to Canning in the Southern Tradition, by Steve Dowdney
Dowdney is in downcountry South Carolina, and organizes his recipes by season throughout the year. He focuses on naturally acid and acidulated recipes – in other words, stuff you can can with a water bath that doesn’t require a pressure canner. His explanation of proper pH and how to check it is very handy. And the recipes are a good combination of classic and intriguing. I am definitely trying the pickled garlic when fresh garlic season comes around.

Southern Biscuits, by Nathalie Dupree
I’ve only just started the second cookbook, Southern Biscuits, but already I’m impressed with its breadth. There’s a lot of variations and clear directions. I love traditional southern baking powder biscuits – my aunt makes them like nobody’s business – but my own attempts always end up dense as a hockey puck. I can manage the buttermilk drop biscuits from America’s Test Kitchen, but although they’re good they’re not a traditional biscuit. I’m looking forward to trying some of these recipes and seeing whether my biscuit skills improve.

Best wishes to everyone for a happy and healthy holiday season.

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