Happy New Year! Can you believe it’s 2017? Here are some new books to help you and your patrons stick to your resolutions (ours is to read more): FOOD, HEALTH, AND HAPPINESS: 115 On-Point Recipes for Great Meals and a Better Life by Oprah Winfrey You get a recipe, and you get a recipe, and […]
From cooking to cocktails, these five books will help revamp your usual dinner table fare: THUG KITCHEN 101: Fast as F*ck by Thug Kitchen For all those people out there wondering whether this crazy vegan sh*t is going to ever go away, wonder no more—it’s here to stay. Your foul-mouthed friends at Thug Kitchen show […]
TGIF, friends! Our #FridayReads picks are two unique explorations of food and culture: SUPER SUSHI RAMEN EXPRESS: One Family’s Journey Through the Belly of Japan by Michael Booth From the author of THE ALMOST NEARLY PERFECT PEOPLE comes a fascinating and funny culinary journey through Japan. “There’s some of both Bill Bryson and Anthony Bourdain […]
We just came back from the long weekend to the wonderful news that Louise Penny’s 12th Inspector Armand Gamache mystery, A GREAT RECKONING, has FOUR STARRED REVIEWS: “The lyrical 12th entry in bestseller Penny’s remarkable series, which has won multiple Agatha awards, finds former Chief Insp. Armand Gamache coming out of retirement to clean up […]
“They ate by candlelight, the candles of all shapes and sizes flickering around the kitchen. Their plates were piled high with turkey and chestnut stuffing, candied yams and potatoes, peas and gravy.” — from STILL LIFE Readers of Louise Penny’s Inspector Armand Gamache series have come to relish the descriptions of food as much as […]
Looking for something fun to bring to your next holiday potluck gathering? How about pie pops?
They're easy to make thanks to pre-made pie crusts and will get you tons of compliments, both for flavor and presentation–seriously, they're adorable. Andrea Smetona's EASY AS PIE POPS has tons of recipes perfect for the season, including Peppermint Pudding, Mint Fudge, and Pumpkin Cheesecake, not to mention brunch-inspired savory pops such as Breakfast Casserole and Hot Ham & Cheese.
Anne whipped up a batch of Honeyed Fig pie pops to bring to a white elephant party last weekend and they were a huge hit. Read on for the how-to and don't forget that this Sunday, December 15 is the last day to enter to win a copy of EASY AS PIE POPS and other cooking and crafting books (details after the break).
1 recipe Homemade Pie Pop Crust (p. 13 in the book) or 4 unbaked store-bought or homemade 9" diameter pie crusts
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened (Anne used Neufchatel)
1/2 cup whipping cream (Anne substituted Half and Half)
1 large egg, plus the white of another for basting
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup honey
5 cups brown or black figs, chopped small
Olive oil, for garnish
Fresh rosemary, for garnish
Other tools needed:
Basting brush (silicone is recommended)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a large baking sheet, or line with parchment paper (Anne's note: wax paper and parchment paper are not the same! Wax paper will melt, so make sure you're using the correct one).
Prepare the filling by mixing together the cream cheese, cream, egg, brown sugar, flour, salt and honey. Toss in the chopped figs and stir. Pour into a 9" diameter pie dish and bake for 20-25 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature before using in pie pops.
Increase the oven temperature to 375 degrees F.
Lay out the 12 bottom crusts on the prepared baking sheet. Using a basting brush, coat each bottom crust with egg white. Press the cookie stick firmly into the center of each bottom crust.
Dollop a 1-1/2 inch bit of the cooled fig mixture in the center of each bottom crust. Place a top crust over the filling and press firmly around the sides to seal the pie pop, making sure to start by firmly crimping the edges around the cookie stick to ensure it stays in place.
After all the pops are sealed and pressed, brush olive oil on each top crust and sprinkle with fresh rosemary.
Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes, until the crust is nice and golden. Let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Try your best not to eat all the pie pops before you get to the party/brunch/potluck (Anne highly recommends eating one or two for quality control purposes).
While many people are preparing for Thanksgiving this week, others are ready to celebrate Hanukkah, which starts this Wednesday. To celebrate, Anne made Yukon Gold and Sweet Potato Latkes and Cider-Glazed Root Vegetables from THE NEW JEWISH TABLE by Todd Gray and Ellen Kassoff Gray to share with all of you.
Enjoy! And don't forget that you can enter to win a copy of THE NEW JEWISH TABLE and other cooking and crafting books (see details after the recipes).
November and December bring some of our favorite holidays. While we like to focus on giving you great news about our books, awards, conference information, and all things cuddly and small, we also think it's the perfect time to share our cooking and craft books with you.
Periodically throughout November and December, we'll feature a recipe or a craft from one of our many titles, in the hope that you might find it useful to share with your patrons, or get ideas for yourself, whether you're entertaining, hosting, or gift-giving.
One other delightful bonus: FREE BOOKS! Just in time for the December holidays, we'll be giving away two bundles of cookbooks and craft books featured in the posts to a pair of lucky winners!
To enter the giveaway, simply email Library@MacmillanUSA.com from your professional/library-issued e-mail address (subject: Cooking & Crafts) and your library’s mailing address. Submit your entry by Sunday, December 16th to be placed in the random drawing. (Make sure to check the rules & regulations after the recipe.)
UPDATE 12/16: Congratulations to our winners, Sarah Bourg of Hamilton North Public Library in Cicero, IN and Pam Aghababian of Ashland Public Library in Ashland, MA!
Our first featured recipe is from KEEPERS: Two Home Cooks Share Their Tried-and-True Weeknight Recipes and the Secrets to Happiness in the Kitchen by Kathy Brennan and Caroline Campion.
Anne was happy to fire up the oven in her kitchen on a cold Sunday to cook this Sausage and White Bean Gratin casserole made with sausage (duh), white beans (double duh), spinach, wine (mmm!), and a butter/breadcrumb topping (double mmm!).
Click here to download a PDF of the Sausage and White Bean Gratin recipe.