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Improve Your Winter Cooking: 13 Best New England Cookbooks

By Madison Duddy | December 3, 2020 | Food & Drink

Dining at home the past year has been a nationwide default, and if you are like us, most dishes are getting old. Add some new flavors to your culinary nights by picking up one of these books—all are finalists for the New England Cookbook Awards—The Readable Feast (thereadablefeast.com). The virtual award ceremony is Dec. 9, but, trust us, all of the books have award-winning recipes and insights into fine food.

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The Berkshires Farm Table Cookbook

By Elisa & Rober Bildner

The Berkshires are known for their family-run farms that bring fresh food to nearby restaurants. Professionally trained chefs Elisa and Rober Bildner put together this New England-inspired cookbook, which includes 125 recipes with a focus on their area’s local ingredients. Sweet corn pancakes and confetti vegetable and goat cheese lasagna are just a couple of the heavenly plates that are sure to light up a weeknight dinner. $25, berkshiresandbeyond.com

The Smoke Shop Backyard BBQ

By Andy Husbands

All Boston BBQ lovers have at some point dined at Andy Husbands’ The Smoke Shop BBQ. If you haven’t, we suggest you pick up his new cookbook and taste the recipes many locals are raving about. Publications like The Boston Globe, Wine Spectator and Star Chefs have praised the food, and now fans can create Husbands’ mouth-watering meals from the comfort of their own kitchen. Bring some new flavor to Game Day with The Smoke Shop’s famous wings or try the pulled pork quesadillas for a Mexican-inspired dinner. $30, andyhusbands.com

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Pastry Love

By Joanne Chang

If you’ve ever indulged in the buttery and tasty pastries at Boston’s Flour Bakery and wondered how they do it, owner and James Beard Award-winning baker Joanne Chang has answered your prayers. In her new book, Pastry Love, the author rounds up 125 of her favorite sweets, including passion fruit crepe cake, mocha chip cookies and a show-stopping malted chocolate cake. Bring your Flour favorites home and bake for someone you love, or yourself. $40, flourbakery.com


Beyond the North Wind

By Darra Goldstein

Traveling to far-away places may be on hold, but cooking foreign delicacies is a perfect and safe way to experience new cultures. For those with adventurous palettes, Gastronomica and Williams College legend Darra Goldstein’s Russian cookbook is the way to go. Named one of the best cookbooks of the year by Forbes, it features recipes for pickles and preserves, infused vodkas and homemade dairy products. Plus—bites like braised cod with horseradish, and black currant cheesecake. $38, darragoldstein.com

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All About Dinner

By Molly Stevens

Award-winning author and Bon Appétit’s Cooking Teacher of the Year, Molly Stevens, has dazzled the culinary world with another tome packed with easy and delectable dishes. Think butter-poached shrimp with fresh tomatoes and garlic and an arugula salad with peaches, basil vinaigrette and crunchy sunflower seeds. The book is ideal for the cook who wants to try quick and easy gourmet meals. $40, mollystevenscooks.com


Ending the War on Artisan Cheese

By Catherine Donnelly

As a prominent food scientist and professor at The University of Vermont, Catherine Donnelly’s new book showcases the ongoing battle between the FDA and the raw milk cheese industry. The U.S. and some European countries have concerns about bacterial outbreaks from cheeses like parmigiano reggiano and geruyère. However, Donnelly uses her book to defend the raw milk cheese industry and exposes the governments’ efforts to take away food choice. $3.50, amazon.com

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The Joy of Seafood

By Barton Seaver

Seafood lovers, this one’s for you. Award-winning chef Barton Seaver created three top restaurants in DC before delving into his new passion: sustainable food systems. His previous books have been praised in The New York Times and Cooking Light, and his newest includes more than 900 seafood recipes like citrus-crusted fried halibut and clam risotto. Using classic techniques along with fresh, natural ingredients, Seaver’s bites will leave you in awe. $35, bartonseaver.com

Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook

By Margaret Hathaway & Karl Schatz

When people think of Maine, lobster is a top food that comes to mind, but the coastal state has many more classic dishes to offer. In May 2021, Maine will celebrate its bicentennial. This book honors 200 years with 200 recipes inspired by the original inhabitants of the area—the Wabanaki tribes—and 21st century Maine immigrants. Explore a variety of flavors like Thai fiddlehead stir fry and lobster crab etouffee. $21, maine200cookbook.com

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Mediterranean Every Day

By Sheela Prakash

After living in Florence and Tuscany, self-taught chef Sheela Prakash fell in love with Miditerranean cuisine. In addition to providing tips for keeping a well-stocked pantry, this cookbook features an abundance of gourmet eats—from snacks like smoky white bean hummus to a must-try niçoise salad and the brown butter tortellini with spinach and hazelnuts. Buon appetito! $27, sheelaprakash.com

A Blissful Feast

By Teresa Lust

A journey through Italy sounds like heaven, but for now, a taste bud trip will have to do. After living in Italian Piedmont, Maremma and Le Marche, New Hampshire chef Teresa Lust released a cookbook that shares authentic Italian dishes she learned and enjoyed abroad, as well as stories about the people who guided her through Italy’s culinary scene. Must-try recipes include grissini breadsticks, bagna cauda and acquacotta. $28, teresalust.com

Rage Baking

By Kathy Gunst

For those who are looking to pound out their COVID feelings into pastry dough, Rage Baking is for you. Kathy Gunst, an award-winning journalist and resident chef at NPR’s Here & Now Kathy, released this new cookbook last February which, in addition to more than 50 recipes, features short essays and quotes from expert bakers, activists and strong women in the U.S like women’s rights activist Cecile Richards. $18, amazon.com

Strong, Sweet and Dry

By Becky Sue Epstein

The last few months have surely put a dent in our collective wine fridges. Before you refill, pick up Strong, Sweet and Dry for a guide to fortified tastes like vermouth, sherry, port and madeira. According to the author, these wines are making a comeback and starring in fun drinks at restaurants and bars across the country. Besides a history of fortified wine, the book includes personal anecdotes from Epstein and exceptional cocktail recipes. $35, beckysueepstein.com

This Is Your Brain on Food

By Dr. Uma Naidoo

In a time where mental health should be on everyone’s radar, a book that discusses which foods fight depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD, ADHD and more is a godsend. In This is Your Brain on Food, internationally regarded Harvard-trained nutritional psychiatrist and chef Dr. Uma Naidoo, who’s the director of nutritional and lifestyle psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital, reminds readers that what you eat not only affects your body—it affects your brain, too. Aside from nutritional recommendations, Dr. Naidoo provides tasty, brain-healthy dishes baked salmon with walnut kale pesto and oven-roasted miso-glazed sweet potatoes. $28, book.umanaidoomd.com



Tags: cookbook

Photography by: Courtesy of McAdams Creative Management; Cover photo by Calum Lewis on Unsplash