I always enjoy seeing lists of what others are reading, but rarely put together lists of my own. I noticed the stack of books on my coffee table is a particularly good one right now and thought I’d share with you. How about a couple of cookbooks, a travel tale and a wellness book?
Let’s start with this beauty, Huckleberry: Stories, Secrets and Recipes from Our Kitchen. Written by Zoe Nathan, founder of Huckleberry in Santa Monica, California, this book is a delight from cover to cover. Even the edging of the pages is a delight–yellow and white polka dots! Inside the book you’ll find hundreds of eye candy photos from Matt Armendariz. There is at least one photo accompanying each recipe, along with a few behind-the-scenes and in-progress photos. Truly a joy to just look at the photos. But the recipes. Oh, the recipes! While this isn’t an exclusively gluten-free cookbook, there are MANY gluten-free recipes, more than I will be able to try in a year of weekend breakfasts and brunches. So far I’ve enjoyed a maple blueberry compote, a chocolate rice pudding and an egg tartine with butternut squash and kale. That last one wasn’t gluten-free in the cookbook, but was easily modified by using gluten-free bread. I foresee giving copies of this book for gifts.
Speaking of gifts, it was my birthday last week. My sweet friends Christina and Bill gave me a copy of Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F*ck. If foul language offends you, skip this one. If you cuss like a sailor, this book is for you. It’s for me. Much like the first book I mentioned, not exclusively a gluten-free cookbook but full of recipes that are either naturally gluten-free or easily modified. Everything is vegetarian though and definitely has a healthy slant. Good stuff in this book! You gotta try the lentil tacos with carrot jicama slaw. Like, really really really, you gotta try them. Then you have to make the roasted sriracha cauliflower bites with peanut sauce. I don’t care if you think sriracha is so 2013. Make this anyway. You’ll thank me later, I’m sure of it.
Next in my stack o’ books is Gumbo Tales: Finding My Place at the New Orleans Table. I’m traveling to New Orleans soon as came across this book while researching the food history of New Orleans. Fear not, it’s not a boring historical tome. Sara Roahen writes so vividly that I can picture the places she visits to drink and dine in fine detail. Intermingled is a fair bit of food history, but it is presented in a way that you can nearly smell the food, taste the flavors of New Orleans. I’m fascinated reading about the differences in gumbo from family to family, the eccentricities and peculiarities of a city like no other. One of the reviews on the outside cover of the book said, “Gumbo Tales makes you want to spend a week-immediately-in New Orleans.” I agree. I have been limiting myself to 20 pages a day in this book because I simply don’t want to be done reading it. (This isn’t as new as the other books in my stack and may not be on the shelves at your local book seller. If you can’t find it at your local library and want to buy a copy, look to see if there are used options on Amazon or ask your bookseller to order a copy for you. I paid around $4 for my used copy.)
Last in my stack of books is a great new read from Alissa Segersten and Tom Malterre. The Elimination Diet takes you step-by-step through a two-month elimination diet to help you identify foods that don’t jive with your system. While not like most of today’s newly published photo-rich cookbooks, this book also has a plethera of healthy eating recipes you can use while on the elimination diet and beyond. I’ve been drinking a warming spice tea with cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, peppercorns, ginger and honey from a recipe in the book. This book is a great resource for building a healthy pantry, shopping for ingredients new to you AND cooking them in ways you might also be new to. This is the most easy to follow elimination diet plan I have seen.
Hey, up above I mentioned the two cookbooks I’m currently reading aren’t exclusively gluten-free. Can we talk about that for a minute?
When I went gluten-free, I was asked what I was going to do with my extensive cookbook collection. My answer was, and still is, cook from them. I’ve never seen a cookbook that didn’t have at least a few gluten-free recipes (naturally gluten-free, no modifications necessary) as well as other that are easily modified. So please don’t toss your collection of church lady cookbooks, don’t ditch your Southern Living annual compilation books. Those are treasures worth keeping if you have previously enjoyed cooking from them. Likewise, don’t be afraid to look at cookbooks that aren’t exclusively gluten-free once you have a grasp on making modifications.
So there you have it, What I’m Reading. And now it’s your turn: what are you reading? Anything I should add to my list?
Full Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase from a link in this post, I might make a little bit of cash, which I promise to use to offset the expense of maintaining this website instead of using it to buy more cookbooks. I was provided a complimentary copy of The Elimination Diet by the publisher. I was not asked nor required to provide a review, endorsement or mention. I just like the book.