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As Winter & Continued Quarantine Approach – Cooking for Comfort is King

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Above: Photo Collage / Lynxotic / Respective publishers

There are more reasons than ever to plan for great meals at home

After the Spring and Summer of this crazy year, perhaps there are things we can all look forward to during the Fall and Winter months. By now we should be experts at many new behaviors, some of which did not even have a name just one short year ago. 

Read More: Baking for Fall: Bread and Comfort Foods to Indulge the Senses

One thing that is a sure area that we can always learn and enjoy more of is home cooking. While we all want better health, stronger bodies and immune systems for the coming cold season, it’s also one of the most proactive, palliative psychological treatments known, a delicious home cooked meal!

And the joy of cooking and nurturing couldn’t be more meaningful than during the no-good, very bad year that many have experienced until now. Holidays are the perfect time to perfect skills from seasons past or to learn new and unexpected ways to celebrate and nourish those closest to us, not to mention ourselves!

Cookbooks can entertain and engender appreciation for food preparation and enjoyment

With all that in mind please peruse the following books we’ve selected on cooking and food enjoyment and preparation – some classic and some mergers but all the beginning of a great journey to better times that we can start today.


Modern Comfort Food: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

Click here to see “Modern Comfort Food
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

In Modern Comfort Food, Ina Garten shares 85 new recipes that will feed your deepest cravings. Many of these dishes are inspired by childhood favorites–but with the volume turned way up, such as Cheddar and Chutney Grilled Cheese sandwiches (the perfect match for Ina’s Creamy Tomato Bisque), Smashed Hamburgers with Caramelized Onions, and the crispiest hash browns that are actually made in a waffle iron! 

There are few things more comforting than gathering for a meal with the ones you love, especially when dishes like Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas are at the center of the table. Old-fashioned crowd pleasers like Roasted Sausages, Peppers, and Onions are even more delicious and streamlined for quick cleanup. For dessert? You’ll find the best Boston Cream Pie, Banana Rum Trifle, and Black and White Cookies you’ll ever make. Home cooks can always count on Ina’s dependable, easy-to-follow instructions, with lots of side notes for cooking and entertaining–it’s like having Ina right there beside you, helping you all the way. Click here to see “Modern Comfort Food” and help Independent Bookstores. Also available on Amazon.

Half Baked Harvest Super Simple: More Than 125 Recipes for Instant, Overnight, Meal-Prepped, and Easy Comfort Foods: A Cookbook

Click here to see “Half Baked Harvest Super Simple
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

We all want to make and serve our loved ones beautiful food–but we shouldn’t have to work so hard to do it. With Half Baked Harvest Super Simple, Tieghan Gerard has solved that problem. 

On her blog and in her debut cookbook, Tieghan is beloved for her freshly sourced, comfort-food-forward recipes that taste even better than they look. Half Baked Harvest Super Simple takes what fans loved most about Half Baked Harvest Cookbook and distills it into quicker, more manageable dishes, including options for one-pot meals, night-before meal prep, and even some Instant Pot(R) or slow cooker recipes.

Using the most important cooking basics, you’ll whip up everyday dishes like Cardamom Apple FrittersSpinach and Artichoke Mac and Cheese, and Lobster Tacos to share with your family, or plan stress-free dinner parties with options like Slow Roasted Moroccan Salmon and Fresh Corn and Zucchini Summer Lasagna. Especially for home cooks who are pressed for time or just starting out, Half Baked Harvest Super Simple is your go-to for hassle-free meals that never sacrifice taste. Click here to see “Half Baked Harvest Super Simple” and help Independent Bookstores. Also available on Amazon

True Comfort: More Than 100 Cozy Recipes Free of Gluten and Refined Sugar: A Gluten Free Cookbook

Click here to see “True Comfort
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

Over the past few years, Kristin Cavallari has become known for the healthy recipes she cooks at home for her family. In her bestselling cookbook, True Roots, she shared the recipes that keep her motivated and inspired and in turn challenged fans to cook more meals at home and live a healthier lifestyle. 

Now, in True Comfort, Kristin turns her attention to some of the most-requested dishes that are hardest to find: healthy comfort food. True Comfort features her favorite recipes for cozy breakfasts (Apple Pecan Dutch Baby, Espresso Overnight Oats, and Sweet Potato Toast), lunches (Roasted Cauliflower Tartine, Nashville Hot Chicken Salad Cups, and Butternut Squash and Leek Chowder) and dinners (Red-Wine Braised Short Ribs, Oat Crust Chicken Pot Pie, and Saffron Seafood Cioppino) plus desserts (Orange Olive Oil Cake and Dark Chocolate Peppermint Silk Pie) and drinks (Cashew Eggnog and Rosemary Charcoal Latte).

With tips and tricks to put together a well-stocked pantry, fridge, and freezer, this book goes beyond the traditional cookbook to help readers feel more like Kristin in the kitchen. Click here to see “True Comfort” and help Independent Bookstores. Also available on Amazon.

Magnolia Table: A Collection of Recipes for Gathering

Click here to see “Magnolia Table
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

#1 New York Times Bestseller. Magnolia Table is infused with Joanna Gaines’ warmth and passion for all things family, prepared and served straight from the heart of her home, with recipes inspired by dozens of Gaines family favorites and classic comfort selections from the couple’s new Waco restaurant, Magnolia Table.

Jo believes there’s no better way to celebrate family and friendship than through the art of togetherness, celebrating tradition, and sharing a great meal. Magnolia Table includes 125 classic recipes–from breakfast, lunch, and dinner to small plates, snacks, and desserts–presenting a modern selection of American classics and personal family favorites. Complemented by her love for her garden, these dishes also incorporate homegrown, seasonal produce at the peak of its flavor. Click here to see “Magnolia Table” and help Independent Bookstores. Also available on Amazon.

Cook with Me: 150 Recipes for the Home Cook: A Cookbook

Click here to see “Cook with Me
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

Growing up with a legendary cookbook-editor mother and a food-obsessed father, Alex Guarnaschelli has always loved to cook. Now, with a daughter of her own, food and cooking mean even more to Alex–they are a way for her to share memories, such as shopping in Little Italy with her father for cured meats and aged cheeses, and tasting the recipes her mom would make from the cookbooks of the iconic authors she worked with. And, more than anything, cooking is what Alex and her daughter, Ava, most love to do together.

In Cook with Me, Alex revives the recipes she grew up with, such as her mom’s chicken with barbecue sauce and her dad’s steamed pork dumplings, offers recipes for foods that she wishes she grew up with, such as comforting and cheesy baked ziti, and details dishes new to her repertoire, including sheet pan pork chops with spicy Brussels sprouts and a roasted sweet potato salad with honey and toasted pumpkin seeds. From meatballs two ways (are you a Godfather or a Goodfellas person?) to the blueberry crumble her mom made every summer, Alex shares recipes and insights that can come only from generations of collective experience.

These recipes reflect the power that food has to bring people together and is a testament to the importance of sustaining traditions and creating new ones. Click here to see “Cook with Me” and help Independent Bookstores. Also available on Amazon.

Milk Street: Cookish: Throw It Together: Big Flavors. Simple Techniques. 200 Ways to Reinvent Dinner

Click here to see “Cookish
and help Independent Bookstores.
Also available on Amazon.

Throw together fast, flavorful meals in no time with just a handful of ingredients with 200 highly cookable, delicious, and incredibly simple recipes from the James Beard Award-winning team at Milk Street.

In Cookish, Christopher Kimball and his team of cooks and editors harness the most powerful cooking principles from around the world to create 200 of the simplest, most delicious recipes ever created. These recipes, most with six or fewer ingredients (other than oil, salt, and pepper), make it easy to be a great cook — the kind who can walk into a kitchen and throw together dinner in no time.

In each of these recipes, big flavors and simple techniques transform pantry staples, common proteins, or centerpiece vegetables into a delicious meal. And each intuitive recipe is a road map for other mix-and-match meals, which can come together in minutes from whatever’s in the fridge. Click here to see “Cookish” and help Independent Bookstores.Also available on Amazon.


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