Cooking and reading are two of my favorite activities so, naturally, I enjoy perusing cookbooks.  I’ve recently discovered three that I think are definitely keepers. They are filled with recipes a family will actually eat, and also incorporate items from my food storage.  The first is All That Jam: 101 Recipes to Make With a Jar of Jam by Hollee Eckman and Heather Higgins (Click the book title to see this book on  As the title suggests, this little spiral-bound book is full of ideas (that don’t include toast) to utilize your jam and jelly supply.  I loved the one for Strawberry Crepes, but recipes range from Herb-Crusted Pork Roast for dinner to Black Forest Pie for dessert.  The recipes for sauces made from homemade jams and jellies look delicious as well.

I’m also devouring Cookin’ with Home Storage by Peggy Layton.  At $7.99 from Alison’s Pantry, this book is a treasure!  Peggy Layton has written a library of great food storage cookbooks, but start with this one because it covers everything.  It opens with great tips for home storage including substitutions and a chart for reconstituting dehydrated foods, which make it a great reference book for every kitchen.  Recipes are included for make-your-own mixes as well as a wide range of recipes from drinks to entrees, soups and desserts that incorporate food storage items.  I love that this cookbook isn’t a collection of odd recipes for dehydrated foods.  Everything sounds…normal…and edible…and really tasty.  The reader can decide whether she wants to pour buttermilk from the carton or reconstitute her buttermilk powder for Buttermilk Rolls or Featherlight Buttermilk Wheat Waffles.  I am finding great new ideas for rotating beans and other items in my storage, and am just eating this book up!

In the third trimester of my recent pregnancy, I took up freezer meal cooking to ease my load after delivery (after all this was baby #5).  I had been searching for a freezer meal cookbook that offered more than just recipes including canned cream soups.  I finally found one I love in The Everything Meals for a Month Cookbook by Linda Larsen.  The book gives step by step instructions and tips for freezer-meal success in the front and then is divided up in chapters by meat.  This format choice makes it really easy to plan meals and to prepare all of your chicken, beef, or vegetarian meals at once.  I love the variety of recipes, and that  measurements are included for making one batch or three at a time.  Another reason I settled on this freezer meal cookbook is that it includes recipes for the slow-cooker.  These are my favorite!  They’re delicious and so easy!

I hope these reviews provide some food for thought to mix up your weekly menus.  Bon appetit!

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3 Comments to “These are a few of my favorite things…”

  1. Brandy says:

    Hi Kim. Thanks for mention Alisons Pantry! Also, a fun place for freezer meals is She has lots of great ideas.

  2. Tammy says:

    btw, your link to the Everything Meals for a Month Cookbook goes to the Cookin’ w/ Home Storage book

  3. Kim says:

    Thanks, now it’s fixed.

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