Monday, September 26, 2011

It's Autumn in My Heart, But Christmas on My Bookshelf

What with all the news of books about knitting, and bees, and more knitting, I have been completely remiss in reporting the following: Christmas on the Farm, the seventh in the series of Farmer's Wife cookbooks that I've been compiling and editing since 2005, has hit the shelves at a bookstore near you!

Part cookbook, part homage to the do-it-yourself spirit that infused so much of life on the farm throughout the early decades of the 20th century, Christmas on the Farm also sports my favorite feature of all the books in the series: a hard cover! Order a copy and come December 25 you'll be able to dazzle your dinner guests with your proficiency in scalloping oysters, glacé-ing fruit, and whipping up your own hand-sewn holiday gifts.

While you're at it, look for all my other Farmer's Wife titles; they make great gifts any time of the year:

The Farmer's Wife Comfort Food Cookbook
The Farmer's Wife Baking Cookbook
The Farmer's Wife Slow Cooker Cookbook
The Farmer's Wife Canning and Preserving Cookbook
The Farmer's Wife Cookie Cookbook
The Farmer's Wife Harvest Cookbook

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Just look what the dog dragged in...

And even I have to admit, it looks pretty fabulous. In real life, it's not even blurry (photo evidence to the contrary). The tome - that's right, folks, a nice big hardcover - hits stores October 11. But thanks to the miracle of pre-ordering, you can click now, forget all about it, and receive a happy surprise in the mail a month hence.

In other news, here's how I spent my summer vacation: traipsing around the south-western region of France's PĂ©rigord, in search of bees. I didn't have to look long. This delightful little booklet turned up on my first week:

And in case you were wondering, no, the correct translation of the title is not the delightfully thriller-evocative "Savage Bees," but rather "Wild Bees." We encountered quite a few of these enormous violet carpenter bees (Xylocopa violacea) on our doorstep, sweet, slow, and oh-so-blue:

And of course, there was honey. Although selecting just two jars from the farmer's market to squeeze in to the luggage proved a challenge. In the end I left it to my 8-year-old daughter to decide. Acacia honey, on the left, has a direct, up-front sweetness to it; rosemary, on the right, is subtly minty.