Welcome back to Take Five, a new Eat Beat feature that offers up five must-try culinary finds from food and drink experts around town. Next up, a gift guide for the gourmands in your life...
Local freelance writer and cookbook author Ashley Gartland spent the last few years trekking around Oregon in search of outstanding tastemakers to feature in her farm-to-table cookbook Dishing Up Oregon ($19.95; Storey Publishing, 2011; more info here).
The book showcases the best chefs, restaurants and ingredients our state has to offer, while giving a big nod to Portland’s talented crop of chefs and purveyors. It's still a must-have for any local foodie, but even Gartland admits that her cookbook isn’t the only one she’s cooking from this season.
“Though I love revisiting favorites from my book," Gartland shares, "I am constantly inspired to head into the kitchen after paging through the newest cookbook releases.” Here are five titles that caught Gartland’s eye recently – including the one she can’t resist keeping for herself this holiday season.
1. For the flavor-seeking globe trekker: Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s Jerusalem
"I’ve started exploring the cuisine of Jerusalem through this book. The beautifully photographed tome explores the culturally diverse cuisine of the authors’ birthplace and taught me that there’s more to it than baba ghanoush and hummus. If you pick up the book for yourself, definitely try the recipe for
roasted chicken thighs with clementines and arak. It’s a keeper."
2. For the food porn enthusiast: Katie Quinn Davies' What Katie Ate
"If you regularly read food blogs, you’re probably familiar with What Katie ate by Sydney-based
photographer Katie Quinn Davies. Her debut cookbook combines her rustic-elegant cooking style with mouthwatering photos that pop off the page. I’m having a hard time putting this book down so I will likely be 'giving' this one to myself."
3. For the minimalist: Christopher Hirsheimer and Melissa Hamilton's Canal House Cooks Every Day
"I'm a big fan of Hirsheimer and Hamilton's straightforward seasonal cooking style. Their new book, Canal House Cooks Every Day, echoes their trademark aesthetic and captures a year of cooking at Canal House. Of the 250 recipes, I’ve already put their roasted pumpkin soup, lasagne bolognese and vin santo-roasted pears on my must-try list."
4. For the enthusiastic beginner: Martha Holmberg's Modern Sauces
"Eat Beat's Allison Jones has already given us plenty of reasons to buy this book of fool-proof sauce recipes with her recent review, but to that I’d add that this book delivers on its promise to teach every kind of cook the skill of great sauce-making. And I love that Holmberg also includes bonus recipes in each chapter to teach home cooks how to use the sauces in the best ways."
5. For the baker: Julie Richardson’s Vintage Cakes
"If your favorite baker doesn’t already have the charming Vintage Cakes, that’s my go-to pick this
year. The book shines the spotlight on classic and forgotten cake recipes and is as irresistible as
author and local baker Julie Richardson’s first book, Rustic Fruit Desserts. Wrapping these two
books up with some high-quality flours, extracts, and spices would create a really memorable gift
for the baking enthusiast on your list."