People who love to eat may be considered to always be the best people (here’s looking at you, Julia Child), but people who also love to read about eating are arguably just that little bit better. Whether dedicated to the appreciation of one particular foodstuff (cheese!), to the preparation of one menu classic (pie!), or to the creative recreation of a magical food legacy (Disney!), the following books have something tasty to offer to foodies and readers alike.
With all due respect to Homer, what better odyssey is there than a cheese odyssey?! As Joe Berkowitz notes, “Cheese is literally heaven. It’s what happens after milk sheds this mortal coil and ascends to a higher plane of existence.” Although he’d always been a fan of the cheesy stuff, it wasn’t until a chance encounter with a cheesemonger that Berkowitz started on the journey to being a true turophile, particularly when it comes to the often-overlooked American varieties. In American Cheese: An Indulgent Odyssey Through the Artisan Cheese World, he relates the highs and lows of that journey, including attempts to understand the theory and technical matters concerning cheese, epic cheese conventions, rare and artisan varieties, global trends, and his own attempts at making cheese. Berkowitz’s book is a gleeful globetrotting account of one man’s love for all things cheese. It’s by turns amusing and insightful, and it leaves you in no doubt that cheese is “the evergreen cheat code for improving any meal.”
Who doesn’t love a pie? Well, there’s bound to be someone, but even that person would probably be convinced of the joys of pies by Erin Jeanne McDowell’s The Book on Pie: Everything You Need to Know to Bake Perfect Pies. Starting from the basic information that all would-be bakers need to know, including the required equipment, methods of storage, and technical terms, McDowell explains how and why to make the different types of dough, form them into pie crusts, and select the most appropriate toppings. She then presents around 140 delicious-sounding recipes that range from classics such as Apple Pie, to savory specials like Avocado Galette, and on to unique combinations such as Caramel-Chai Custard Pie in Shortbread Crumb Crust. The clear and straightforward baking instructions are written in McDowell’s trademark friendly and engaging style, and the recipes are accompanied by a host of photographs guaranteed to make readers’ mouths water.
Every Disney fan knows that one of the most delightful aspects of the “Happiest Place on Earth” is the range of delectable and often one-of-a-kind foodstuffs on offer in all of the Disney Parks. In The Unofficial Disney Parks Cookbook, lifelong Disney fan Ashley Craft presents 100 recipes for food, drinks, and snacks inspired by what is available in the Disney Parks. The book is divided into sections covering the recipes of relevance to each Park (for example, Peter Pan Floats at the Magic Kingdom and Corn Dogs at Disney California Adventure), meaning that it can be used to plan a tasty trip to Disney as well as to inspire a host of Disney-themed meals. The included recipes range from classics such as Micky Sugar Cookies and Gaston’s Giant Cinnamon Rolls to newer arrivals like Pongu Lumpia (to be found in the World of Avatar), and on to more dubious sounding delicacies such as Blue Milk (inspired by Bantha milk from Star Wars). This book will surely bring a little Disney magic into readers’ homes (and stomachs).