If there were such a thing as a support group for people who buy too many cookbooks, I would be at every meeting. I am especially vulnerable to the ones that read like a journal. The ones that you can sit down and start on page one and keep going all the way to the index, because you are fascinated by how she and her husband divvy up the kitchen responsibilities (Jenny Rosenstrach’s Dinner, A Love Story) or by how he became impassioned to help people learn how to cook for themselves (Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution). My most recent purchase, The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila, is that type of cookbook. Her sweet stories about her family and her easy going, relaxed style make you think that…yes…maybe I could make my own butter. Beautiful color photos accompany stories and easy to follow recipes for 101 everyday staples that most of us usually buy prepackaged. Everything from chicken stock and spice mixes to pudding and peanut butter cups. She covers children’s menu staples like chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese and also delves into making your own dairy products like ricotta cheese and butter. She provides a section on canning that actually doesn’t sound scary! I mixed up a batch of her pancake and waffle mix and keep a bag of it in the freezer to help streamline the Saturday morning “Mom…will you make us pancakes?” routine. Alana also has a cooking blog, Eating From the Ground Up, which you should definitely head right over to and pick out something to make for dinner tonight!
The Homemade Pantry…Cookbook Reviewon March 13, 2014