Celebrate National Waffle Week!

Waffles are so good, one day wasn’t long enough to enjoy them – there’s a whole week in their honor! Celebrate National Waffle Week this week by cooking up something good from the safety of your kitchen. Get inspired by the recipes in the following cookbooks, available to check out on hoopla via Abbot Public Library with no wait!

Dawn Yanagaihara’s recipes in her book, Waffles, include more than thirty different waffles, ranging from the classic Buttermilk Waffle to the more creative Ham and Gruyère Waffle Tartines. The crispy golden delicacy isn’t just for breakfast – find out how you can enjoy these for lunch and dinner as well. 

If the cover is any indication, Tara Dugan’s Waffles also contains some delicious recipes for the popular breakfast sweet, as well as savory options to enjoy later in the day. The recipes for chicken & waffles and waffle sandwiches might make you wonder why you’ve only been eating waffles for breakfast.

Want to make sure you don’t overindulge? Mini-Waffle Cookbook can help. Peruse recipes perfect for your mini waffle maker, sweet and savory options that include Banana Walnut Waffles, Fritaffle, Waffle-Blini, Waffled Panini, Waffled Calzone, Waffle Joe, Strawberry Shortcake Waffles, and Waffle Pops. You’ll even find gluten-free and vegan options! For even more vegan options, you can check out The Global Vegan Waffle Cookbook.

Daniel Shumski takes a slightly different approach. In Will It Waffle?, he experiments with putting different foods in his waffle iron to see if they, like waffles, result in little compartments for their complimentary sauces. Entertain your kids by making dinner more fun with Waffled Sweet Potato Gnocchi, Pressed Potato and Cheese Pierogi, Waffled Meatballs, or mac ‘n’ cheese-turned-grilled cheese sandwich.

Trying to eat healthy? Don’t have a waffle maker? You could celebrate Waffle Week by reading or watching stories about waffles instead! In the movie Waffle Street, the main character works as a waiter at a waffle house after being a V.P. at a $30 billion hedge fund. 

Benny the Woodpecker tries to sneak into a waffle house in the kids’ book, Woodpecker Wants A Waffle, available on hoopla as a Read-Along ebook and audiobook. If you’re in the mood for an adult cozy, check out Murder With Fried Chicken And Waffles, also available as an ebook or audiobook. There are even more waffle-related items to explore on hoopla!

Celebrate National Ice Cream Month!

July is National Ice Cream Month. And no wonder, with how hot the summer can be! If you want to practice social distancing away from those long lines at the ice cream stores, here are some ebooks to help you make, enjoy, and celebrate this tasty summertime treat! 

Get the scoop on how to make ice cream in Charity Ferreira and Lou Seibert Pappas’s ebook with 25 recipes for homemade ice creams and frozen desserts. The A to Z Ice Cream: Making Ice Cream at Home for Total Beginners by Lisa Bond is another great way to start learning how to make this popular frozen dessert, as well as facts about ice cream you can share with friends and family! Find 51 recipes in Nicole Weston’s How to Make Ice Cream, including classics such as coffee and chocolate, as well as original flavors like goat cheese and honey, maple bacon, and more! Or learn from master chef Louis P. De Gouy in The Ice Cream Book, which includes over 400 recipes. We guarantee you will find The Best Ice Cream Maker Cookbook Ever in our hoopla collection! If you care about cows so much you don’t eat dairy products, try Vegan A La Mode by Hannah Kaminsky, with 100+ recipes made from almond, coconut, and other dairy alternatives. 

Once you have your frozen dessert in hand, enjoy while reading an ice cream-themed adult mystery or romance! Jen and Sherry try to solve the Chunky Raspberry Fudge Murder in Penelope Manzone’s cozy mystery. Listen to Lexy Baker and her grandmother, Nans, solve a mystery in Leighann Dobbs’s audiobook, Ice Cream Murder. For A Deadly Inside Scoop, Abby Collette’s wintertime mystery features a recent MBA grad who took over her family’s ice cream business and found the body of a man with an old feud with her family.

If you want something more romantic, Eileen Dreyer’s The Ice Cream Man features Jenny Lake investigating an ice cream man who may be selling something else from his ice cream truck. You could also travel back in time to Grace Thompson’s Ice Cream in Winter, about a woman trying to run a struggling ice cream shop in the winter of 1940. Or take a contemporary road trip in Tiffany Carby’s romance, $(mint)en Chocolate Chip, in which a successful blogger takes a road trip to find the best ice cream spots.

What goes well with ice cream? Dogs! In Drawing with Mark: Happy Tails & We All Scream for Ice Cream, children will learn about popular flavors of the frozen dessert, and they will be taught how to draw an ice cream cone and truck! They’ll also learn how to take care of and draw puppies and kittens. If you want to see doggos enjoying their own frozen treats, take a look at the photos in Diana Lundin’s Dogs vs. Ice Cream! Splat the Cat and Stick Dog also have something to scream or dream about ice cream in the children’s books by Rob Scotton and Tom Watson.

Check out the rest of hoopla’s ice cream-themed items, which include recipe books, fiction, music, and other entertaining items for all ages!

Get Your Grills Ready For Independence Day!

Celebrating the 4th of July may be different this year. Fireworks have been postponed or canceled, and with social distancing, big family cookouts are limited to the people in your household. This is a good time to form a new kind of celebration! Let’s Go To a Cookout! will get kids excited about the experience. The following ebooks include tips and tricks to having the perfect cookout. Stay tuned tomorrow morning for decorations you can make and music you can enjoy to complete your patriotic celebration!

THE MEAT OF THINGS

Franklin Barbeque: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto will teach you how to cook meat (brisket, anyone?), spilling secrets from the popular pitmaster Aaron Franklin, renowned for his barbeque trailer in Austen, Texas. Learn how to build and customize your own smoker, find and cure the right wood, create and tend the perfect fire, choose the right meat, and more! To get a taste of his barbeque techniques, watch this video of the pitmaster cooking a brisket.

For more Texas recipes, check out the Legends of Texas Barbeque Cookbook, and The Brisket Chronicles will teach you more about making brisket. Where’s the beef, you may ask. Find recipes for the #1 cookout dish, the burger, in several of the ebooks available to check out on hoopla, including The Great American Burger, Wicked Good Burgers, Weber’s Big Book of Burgers, Pornburger, and more! The Best Veggie Burgers on the Planet even gives you a vegetarian alternative.

America’s Best Ribs might not be so bad, either. Any book about barbequing may be sufficient to satiate your desire. Try some more of the titles you’ll find in hoopla’s Barbecue & Grilling collection, including BBQ USA, Sizzling Grilling, and America’s Best BBQ – Homestyle. Perhaps your taste turns towards different kinds of meat. Fish Grilled & Smoked or even Beer-Can Chicken may be more your style.

VEGETARIAN, VEGAN, AND DIETARY OPTIONS

Don’t eat meat? The Best Veggie Burgers on the Planet isn’t the only vegetarian option. Check out VBQ-The Ultimate Vegan Barbecue Cookbook! Instead of beef or brisket, put an eggplant hot dog or cauliflower cutlet on the grill! Nadine Horn and Jörg Mayer share tips for having a fabulous plant-based barbecue, from how and when (and where) to light the fire, how to control the heat, how to use different cooking methods, and even how to clean your barbeque after. Also included are more than 80 recipes, with photos to show how appetizing a meatless meal can be.

Vegetables on Fire contains recipes for Cauliflower “steaks,” broccoli burgers, brisket-like beets, and other meat alternatives, and Vegetarian Grilling has not only recipes for veggie burgers, skewers, and rolls, but cheesy options, as well as desserts to satisfy any sweet tooth. Get back to basics with Paleo Grilling, a guide for the modern caveman to grilling unprocessed food over a natural fire. It even includes desserts a caveman would love!

Find more vegetarian barbeque ebooks in hoopla’s Barbeque and Grilling collection.

GETTING YOUR JUST DESSERTS!

After all the hard work of barbequing your meal, you probably feel you’ve earned your dessert. We’ve got you covered!

Find different takes on the popular cookout classic in S’mores. Keeping the three-layer design with the crunchy outer layer and the gooey and melty inside ingredients, Dan Whalen creates such masterpiece variations as Salted Caramel S’mores, Lemon Meringue S’mores, Kettle Corn S’mores, and even an Elvis-inspired creation with bacon, banana, and peanut butter! For even s’more ideas about how to enjoy this popular treat, check out So Much S’more To Do by Becky Rasmussen and Erik Ahlman. Featuring 55 alternative recipes to the well-loved graham cracker-chocolate-marshmallow creations, you’ll find such creative twists as Brownie, Peanut Butter & Banana, and Tiramisu S’mores!

Show off your patriotism with the All-American classic: apple pie! An Apple a Day has recipes for all year ‘round. Included are savory recipes as well as the much-desired desserts. Learn how to make Frozen Apple Daiquiris, pies, sauces, tarts, and more! For recipes from all across the United States, here is America’s Most Delicious Dessert Recipes State by State, with different takes on cakes, pies, tarts, cookies, bars, sorbet, ice cream and more!

If you only want to look at pies, take a gander at such titles as America’s Best Pies, First Prize Pies, and The Magic of Mini Pies. Filled with recipes for simpler pies using apple, custard, strawberry, raisin, blackberry, and more, as well as more inventive pies such as Root Beer Float, Banana Dulce de Leche, and Lavender Cream Toffee pies – your taste buds will be swimming with sweet flavors!

If it’s too hot for s’mores or pies, cool off with some frozen treats! Try your hand at popsicle making with For the Love of Popsicles, 20 Best Frozen Pop Recipes, Ice Pops, and Perfect Pops. For those who prefer ice cream, try any of these titles: 

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home

The Ultimate Guide to Homemade Ice Cream

Ice Cream Treats

The Artisan Kitchen: Perfect Homemade Ice Cream

Sweet Scoops

I Scream Sandwich!

and more! 

For more frozen desserts you can attempt to concoct, check out The Art of Making Gelato, How to Make Frozen Yogurt, and, for dairy-less cold treats, Making Vegan Frozen Treats. Browse through even more dessert titles on hoopla!

Staff Picks: Cookbooks for Quarantine

Our dining experience looks a little different these days. No longer able to dine out at our favorite restaurants or find exactly the ingredients we need at the store, we’ve become increasingly dependent upon ourselves to cook at home using what we have. For some, this has been an opportunity to perfect culinary skills and try out those hours-long cooking projects that you never usually have the time to complete. For others, this has been a crash-course in using pantry staples and becoming acquainted with their kitchens. 

But no matter your skill level or appetite, we’ve got your cookbook needs covered to add some flavor and spice to your home-cooking journey, all free with your Abbot Public Library card. There are over 1,000 titles available in our digital collections, from regional cuisine (Tex-Mex, Korean, French, Palestinian, Oaxacan), to diet-specific (Paleo, Keto, Vegan, Gluten-Free, Whole30), to pop culture-inspired (Anne of Green Gables? Literary wizards? Questlove?), and everything in between! If hundreds of cookbooks seems like a little much to swallow, these five highly-recommended cookbooks are a great place to start:

Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking by Samin Nosrat & Wendy MacNaughton

If you take only one title away from this list, let this be the one. Part textbook, part cookbook, and highly enjoyable (think on-the-nightstand, bedtime-read enjoyable) Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat is like getting a cooking lesson from your very kind, very knowledgeable best friend who only wants you to succeed at cooking and life. Certified Good Human™ Samin Nosrat doesn’t just want you to cook her recipes — she wants you to have enough confidence in the kitchen to go off-book and use its namesake elements to make great food every time. Complete with Wendy MacNaughton’s delightfully informative illustrations — no staged food photography here — this is a guide you’ll turn to time and time again.

Small Victories: Recipes, Advice + Hundreds of Ideas for Home Cooking Triumphs by Julia Turshen

Julia Turshen wants you to relax. And if cooking isn’t your idea of relaxing, well then, she wants to change that for you, too. In the same philosophical vein of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, Turshen posits that, in having the necessary know-how to create the daily ritual we call mealtime, we can feel grounded and find joy. She urges us to celebrate our cooking triumphs, and gives you all of the tools and tricks to make simple substitutions with unpretentious ingredients for wholesome, tasty meals. For anyone in need of a small victory (see what we did there?), this one’s for you.

Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

Never have vegetables looked better than between the pages of London-based Ottolenghi’s stunning vegetarian classic. Never fear carnivores: Ottolenghi infuses his vegetable recipes with such vibrant and bold Eastern Mediterranean flavors, you won’t even miss the meat. A great source for homecooks looking to toss a little more tasty veggie power into their meals, and for vegetarian experts to up their plant-based game. 

The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science by J. Kenji López-Alt

The Food Lab, based on López-Alt’s popular Serious Eats column of the same name, is for the Good Eats-style food science types out there. From mac and cheese to turkey, Lopéz-Alt gives you foolproof recipes for all of your favorite American classics, and the solid science behind making them perfectly. This is an awesome resource for people who don’t just love to cook and eat, but are curious about hows and whys of what’s on their plate, too.

Pastry Love: A Baker’s Journal of Favorite Recipes by Joanne Chang

You didn’t think we’d leave out dessert, did you? Joanne Chang, James Beard award-winning baker and owner of Boston’s famed Flour bakeries, presents 125 of her favorite pastries and desserts in this comprehensive guide. From lemon sugar cookies to passion fruit crepe cake, there is a recipe to suit every sweet craving and skill level. Replete with pro tips, tricks, and techniques, this will quickly become a staple of your baking book collection. 

For more cooking guidance, you can also stream video lectures through Abbot Public Library’s Indieflix service, which has a section on Food & Wine.