Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Homemade Pantry: Alana Chernila

I loved this book. It's perfect for those of us who have started raising an eye at those boxes of pop tarts in the grocery store and don't work on the weekend. We all know how many preservatives, chemicals, fillers, corn and soy by-products and other stuff not meant for consumption by the human animal is in our foods. But that doesn't mean we don't like pop tarts, butter in wrapped bars, cheese, graham crackers and juice in plastic containers? Well, this lady shows you how to make all those things you used to waste money and calories on. Things like salsa, crackers, tortillas, pasta, fruit roll ups, baking mixes, jams, the works. All of it step-by-step and pretty as a picture. You can't ask for more.

It is written in a clear and easy, conversational tone. The photography is stunning. the first chapter (called so cleverly aisles, in this book) is about dairy at home and shows a young girl leaving a gate with a glass bottle of milk while a herd of milk cows watch on and I melted. And the whole, beautiful, book is like that.

Alana is a semi-local, she lives an hour away or so in Western Mass and is going to be doing an event at Battenkill Books. If you want a signed copy of your own, you can email Connie Brooks and she will happily set you up. I bought my copy in the store today, and it has been a long time since I was that content leaving a bookstore with a cookbook!

Homemade Pantry costs something like 24 bucks and I that will buy you about 6 boxes of Poptarts. If that isn't enough to convince you to consider this book I don't know what is.


Anonymous V. said...

Hey, WOW! We're reading that book too (got it from the library). Amazing recipes- read a few over breakfast this morning.

I'm eleven, and I have read Barnheart, Chick Days, and in progress is Made from Scratch.

July 3, 2012 at 7:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hearing that Monsanto owns Kellogg's (and many other companies) was enough to make me give up pop-tarts. I will definitely add this to my reading list!

Another great book along these lines is "Make the Bread, Buy the Butter" by Jennifer Reese. It gives you recipes for everything from homemade condiments & confections to things like homemade marshmallows while weighing the cost-effectiveness of homemade vs. storebought and the amount of effort involved to cook from scratch. It also recounts her family's foray into homesteading.

Thanks, Jenna! You always recommend great books- keep the recommendations coming!

July 3, 2012 at 7:36 PM  
Blogger Cathy said...

I totally agree with you - I bought this book and love it! The first thing I made were the hamburger rolls...no more store bought ones for us! I made the yellow cake w/chocolate frosting. yumm-yumm! Can't wait to try the tarts - I better get in more walks to keep the extra pounds off. lol

July 3, 2012 at 8:09 PM  
Blogger Christee said...

LOVE IT!! I have got to get that book. I have 2 small kiddos and shopping in the organic section of the grocery store gets pretty pricey. I just looked up a recipe for an Ezekiel bread and it is fairly simple and WAY less expensive to make yourself especially if you double the batch.
I too am not a fan of Monsanto and the major brands that use their products so this book will be a wealth of information.

July 3, 2012 at 9:24 PM  
Blogger Monster Librarian said...

I am reading it right now too, and loving it!

I used to work with Alaina's mom, so I feel like 7 degrees of Kevin Bacon separation from someone famous. :)

July 4, 2012 at 9:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Already have this one on my Wish List at Amazon, but I am thinking how nice it would be to get a copy signed by the author.

July 4, 2012 at 1:55 PM  
Blogger Indio said...

Thanks for the recommendation. I found our library has two copies of it on the shelves so I requested it. I need some good Summer reading.

July 4, 2012 at 5:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I picked this up a month or so ago and I LOVE IT. I've made the sauerkraut, the poptarts, and...shoot something else. At any rate I love it and it's been so helpful in my homemakin' ways! I'm glad you're posting about it, to spread the word of this wonderful book!

July 5, 2012 at 11:36 AM  
Blogger Trish said...

This is one of the cookbooks that I keep on the kitchen windowsill... I have a beautiful bottle of homemade vanilla (recipe straight out of the book) right next to it. No more store-bought expensive vanilla for me!! tI've done the bread, the pop tarts, and I plan to make several more. Definitely a keeper! And, worth the money.

July 5, 2012 at 12:20 PM  
Blogger seagrrlz said...

I just went and ordered the book. Looks like a great book. Thanks for the recommendation. Learned about some great products/books/ideas here on ur site.

July 5, 2012 at 1:34 PM  
Blogger SixSchlabies said...

I just saw this book tonigh at the bookstore. I took a picture of it with my phone, so I could buy it later. So funny that you posted about it.

July 7, 2012 at 9:58 PM  
Blogger Carole said...

I was wondering whether you would be happy to put up a link in my monthly series called “Books You Love”. The idea is for people to link up posts about a book they loved. It could be an old fave. I am hoping we will end up with a nice collection of books that can go on our reading lists. Here is the link Books You Loved July Edition

July 8, 2012 at 4:37 PM  

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