Three on a Theme: Vegan Cookbooks for Autumn

Autumn is a great time of year to turn inwards and do some experimentation in the kitchen, whether this means cooking delicious warm meals or exploring new baked goods to munch on while things get colder and darker outside. This post compiles a list of plant-based (vegan) cooking and baking resources offered by the Library that can help guide you on your autumn kitchen adventures. Whether you are already eating plant-based foods or not, these are sure to yield some yummy treats for this yummy season.

Vegan Casseroles by Julie HassanVegan Casseroles: Pasta Bakes, Gratins, Pot Pies, and More by Julie Hassan

Nothing says autumn like a nice gooey, crispy, scrumptious casserole taken fresh out of the oven. This cookbook by Julie Hasson is designed for the “health-conscious” vegan while also prioritizing the things that make casseroles a traditional comfort food. According to critical reviews, her recipes succeed in delivering flavor even without the dairy products that we tend to think make casseroles so good in a non-vegan context. With categories sch as “one-dish appetizers,” “pasta casseroles,” “dessert casseroles,” and an entire section on “sauces, toppings, and basics,” this is a very varied collection for anyone looking to expand their recipe repertoire this season. Continue reading “Three on a Theme: Vegan Cookbooks for Autumn”

Our Table: Sharing Stories and Meals

We begin, as with so many meals, with thanks. Thank you to our grocery clerks, farmers market vendors, restaurant owners and employees for all you do and all you have given for your neighbors, your customers and fans. Thank you for sharing what Seattle needs: sustenance for body and heart.

To satisfy both, look to the intersection of cookbook and memoir. The library’s ebook collection is filled with ways to sharpen kitchen skills, bring new adventure to pantry staples, and invite guest chefs into your home. These are more than recipes. They are acts of creation and expression, transformed over many incarnations by home cooks and trained hands over generations. American Chef James Beard said “Food is our common ground, a universal experience.” What experience will you share at these tables that span cultures and lifetimes? Continue reading “Our Table: Sharing Stories and Meals”

Dinner in a Movie: Dining In with SPL Streaming Services

When our video streaming queue, filled with murder mysteries and whodunnit crime documentaries, no longer looked as inviting, or the pile of books we had brought home stayed unread, or the housework we said was going to get done remains as unfinished as ever, it seems many of us are resorting to the kitchen to find our creative sides. Who knew the pantry and the fridge would yield the entertainment we now crave since being stuck at home?

Everyone is showing off their baking projects and homemade dinners paired with their chosen libation. Not everything turns out tasting perfectly, of course…not at first, anyway. But we’ve got instructional and inspirational videos that might help. (Think: YouTube without the mean comments)

Continue reading “Dinner in a Movie: Dining In with SPL Streaming Services”

Comic Cuisine

Before social-distancing, I thought I was a pretty decent home cook. Now, after eating nothing but my own cooking for two weeks, I’ve discovered that I only know about five recipes. For anyone in a similar boat, the library has nearly 2,000 digital cookbooks to inspire your cooking adventures.

Personally though, most of those cookbooks don’t work well for me—I need step by step help and looking at a huge block of text on a recipe usually makes my attention wander. The solution? Comic cookbooks! These cookbooks often encompass multiple genres combining travelogue, memoir, food history, and – most importantly – recipes in graphic novel format that are engaging and easy to follow.

A sampling of the comic cookbooks in our collection:

Cook Korean! A Comic Book with Recipes by Robin HaCook Korean! A Comic Book with Recipes by Robin Ha
Ha’s personal and educational approach to Korean food makes it feel like I’m learning to cook from a friend. In addition to 65 recipes, she also helps the reader connect more deeply to Korean cuisine by sharing food histories, regional variations, and anecdotes. Continue reading “Comic Cuisine”

Ready, Set, Holidays!

The holidays are nearly upon us. For many of us, it’s time to start thinking about making a Halloween costume, what dish to make for Thanksgiving, or what gifts to make for friends and family. Now is the time to start planning! Here are some books to guide you as the season approaches.

In The Horrible Craft Book, Laura Minter brings kids and adults together to make gross items like cat poo chocolates, or a brain piñata and tasty eyeballs, just in time for Halloween. In Autumn BouquetSharon Keightley shows quilters how to prepare appliques featuring beautiful fall colors and themes. Deck the halls Scandi-style with Norwegian sensations Arne & Carlos’s 55 Christmas Balls to Knit and Jorid Livnik’s Big Book of Christmas Knits. Make Beautiful Wreaths with Melissa Skidmore or step up your decorating game with Cassie Kitzmiller’s Christmas Tree BookPersonalize your own cards, gift wrap and decorations with Holiday Hand Lettering from Lark Books and Vivienne Bolton’s Making Your Own Greeting Cards and Gift WrapAnd Doerthe Eisterlehner keeps things festive and charming with My Little Crocheted Christmas along with ideas for traditional crafts in Taste of Home: Handmade Christmas Continue reading “Ready, Set, Holidays!”