The woman knows a good cookbook. For more than 30 years, Alison Fryer helped connect people with great books for food lovers at her shop, The Cookbook Store. She continues the conversation with food lovers by organizing author and chef events through her website. And, having cottaged for 15 years, she also knows what recipes work at the lake. We asked for her top picks of the season’s bounty for cottage bakers and cooks, and here’s what she served up.
Bake with Anna Olson
Anna Olson tempts us with her favourites in Bake with Anna Olson from her wildly popular television series. Olson taps into her professional training to teach the beginner baker how to make classic New York cheesecake, while at the same time appealing to those looking for new challenges, such as the glorious croquembouche.
Bobbette and Belle
Those bakers seek- ing more of a French twist will gravitate to Bobbette & Belle. Allyson Bobbitt and Sarah Bell are the dynamic duo behind the shop in Toronto of the same name. Their creativity gives us wonderful, innovative temptations from mini blueberry hand pies or cinnamon pull-apart bread to double chocolate fleur de sel cookies—decadent without being too fussy for the cottage.
The Baker in Me
Daphna Rabinovitch is a baker at heart. Her new book The Baker in Me is an engaging tome, perfect if you only want one baking resource to leave at the cottage. I was hooked when I discovered 13 recipes for scones! An obvious labour of love by Rabinovitch, the book reads as if she is watching over your shoulder as you cook. Easy recipes that all the family can make and enjoy. And for those who love to read cookbooks on a rainy day at the cottage, this one wraps you up in a big hug!
Cooking for Jeffrey
I readily admit I’ve not looked at any Ina Garten, a.k.a. TV’s Barefoot Cont- essa, cookbooks in a while. In Cooking for Jeffrey, her 10th book, Garten hearkens back to a more personal cooking style as she prepares her husband, Jeffrey’s, favourite dishes. Many of the simple recipes serve six or more—great for guests who descend on the cottage—including crusty baked shells & cauliflower, fiesta corn & avocado salad, and fresh peach cobbler.
Real Food Real Good
Canadian chef Michael Smith is another person who loves to feed people. It seems as chefs get older, and possibly wiser, they realize that simplicity rules when feeding family and friends, which is the theme of his newest book, Real Food, Real Good. With recipes such as real chicken fingers with chipotle BBQ sauce and whole wheat penne with spinach and tomato bacon sauce, Smith has created simple, tasty meals with ingredients you have on hand.
And then there’s Anthony Bourdain. One normally thinks of the opinionated Bourdain in some exotic locale eating a plate of moving ingredients. So his new cookbook, Appetites, comes as a bit of a surprise in that it’s family oriented, with food for all ages. You’ll find novel breakfast, sandwich, and salad ideas to liven up the cottage meal rotation—plus all the opinions you might expect. Fatherhood suits an older and wiser Bourdain.
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