book recommendations

i’m really excited about the gardening and food books i received for christmas this year. here’s the line-up:

the edible front yard by Ivette Soler. what i love about this book is that it’s not a “how to” on how to create vegetable gardens. instead, it shows you the ways you can create landscapes in your yard that are both beautiful but also contain edible plants, so you can get the best of both worlds. Soler has some interesting plant combinations and the book is full of bright photographs. it’s my spring inspiration while i watch our yard turn white with snow and then muddy with rain this winter.

make your place (affordable, sustainable nesting skills) by raleigh briggs. this is one of briggs many books that grew out of her DYI/zine projects. it’s full of useful tips and recipes for making your own cleaning products and keeping your living space free of chemicals and other nasty things that often give me headaches. the entire book is hand-drawn, making it even more fun to read:

tart and sweet by kelly geary and jessie knadler. i’m MOST excited about this book. first of all, it’s beautifully photographed. i want to eat everything in it. geary and knadler write about the canning process in simple terms that make it so appealing, i want to start today. the second half of the book is all recipes and are arranged by seasons. some of the winter recipes: candied kumquats with cinnamon and star anise, lemon herb pickled garlic, horseradish lemon pepper sunchokes. seriously. i’m hungry writing about it. read more about knadler’s interesting life on her blog, rurallyscrewed. love that.

last but not least, i asked for this book on a whim because the sub-title looked interesting: The Feast Nearby. How I lost my job, buried a marriage, and found my way by keeping chickens, foraging, preserving, bartering, and eating locally (all on forty dollars a week). i also judged this book by its cover: the woman is holding carrots and wearing Hunter boots. two of my favorite things.

the book is a collection of essays and recipes by robin mather, former food journalist for the Chicago Tribune. i’m only on chapter 1. can’t decide what i think yet, but i’ll post back here if it gets interesting.

any food-related book suggestions?