National Library Week

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April 11, 2011 by Flora Dawn

Did you know it’s National Library Week? To say I use the library frequently might be a bit of an understatement. Our local library is actually within walking distance of our house, and my oldest daughter is a volunteer there also. We LOVE the library!

I realize not everyone has access to a great library system, but if you do, you should really take advantage of all the resources for cooking. Most libraries will allow you to place items on hold, lend from other libraries within a system, or even throughout the region or country, making it possible to find some great books, videos, and magazines.

When I need some cooking inspiration I just head to my library. I especially love the library for cooking magazines; although I enjoy reading the articles, I really hate having magazines piling up all over my house, so reading them at the library and leaving them there works out nice.

So what am I currently reading from the library? Here’s the list (these aren’t gluten-free cookbooks, but there are plenty of dishes that are naturally gluten-free, and many are easily adapted).

I am trying to get lots of ideas for Meatless Monday meals, so I currently am reading:A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen, Cooking Light Way to Cook Vegetarian, and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I am getting some really great ideas without spending the $100+ it would have cost me at the bookstore!

As part of The Kids Cook Monday campaign, I am setting aside one evening a week to cook especially with my kids. This means I need simple, family-friendly ideas, so I am reading Robin Rescues Dinner and Everyday Food: Fresh Flavor Fast. I regularly check out books from Everyday Food as their recipes are typically easy to prepare and easy to adapt with our dietary restrictions.

If you are looking to get more vegetables and fruits in your kids’ diets, please, please, please don’t get one of those “puree the heck out of boiled veggies and sneak it in your food” cookbooks. Okay, so the quote here is actually from me, not the cookbooks, but you get the idea. I came across the The Cleaner Plate Club: Raising Healthy Eaters One Meal at a Time and I think it is packed full of great ideas and a much better alternative than deception!

If you have kids the two best “kid cookbooks” I have come across, and own actually, are Emeril’s Emeril’s There’s a Chef in My Family!: Recipes to Get Everybody Cooking
and Emeril’s There’s a Chef in My Soup! Recipes for the Kid in Everyone. Not only is Emeril a great chef, but he’s a dad. These cookbooks are fun with large font and silly doodles throughout. And the foods are actually things kids, and their entire families, will want to make and eat.

So visit your local library this week and get cooking!



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