Book Review: Eating Local

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In my head I know that growing food for a CSA involves getting up at dawn, working all day and into the evening under the hot sun, pulling countless weeds and lifting thousands of pounds of food out of the soil week after week. Tiring work by any measure. But Eating Local: the Cookbook Inspired by America's Farmers, makes it all look beautiful. It would be hard to page through the book's heavy, glossy leaves and not be drawn in. The photographs are glorious, the writing clean, and the stories inspiring.

Of course it is also a cookbook, filled with recipes that seem designed to put every ingredient in its best light, not unlike the photos themselves. Cooks may not find themselves reaching for this book for weeknight fare, but will, like me, take joy in reading the farmers' stories, paging through the photos, and finally putting together a special menu from its ample and varied offerings. With sections on vegetables, fruits, and poultry, meat and eggs, all tastes can be readily accommodated. I for one will turn to Eating Local the next time company is coming for dinner.

LocalHarvest was an early collaborator on this book project, which was created by Sur La Table and written by Janet Fletcher. In Fletcher's capable hands, quality ingredients are paired in unexpected ways and bloom with exceptional flavors. We are as pleased to see nine LocalHarvest members featured in such a fine book as we are delighted to introduce our newsletter readers to it.

Thanks to the publisher, we have five copies of Eating Local to give away to newsletter readers. To enter the giveaway, just fill out this little form. Winners will be drawn at random from among all completed entries at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, July 2, 2010, and will be contacted the week after.

Eating Local can be purchased directly at Sur La Table stores, or online at IndieBound, Borders, Barnes & Noble, or Amazon.

A recipe from the book follows, perfect for making the most of summer's berries.

Eating Local: The Cookbook Inspired by America's Farmers by Sur la Table and Janet Fletcher. Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC.

Back to the June 2010 Newsletter