by Kathy Humison, WSGC Staff
November is here—time to let the crazed holiday hubbub begin—or not! This is also a great time of year to sit back and settle into a calmer pace. Take advantage of the shorter, cooler days and dust off your soup pot—there are still great-tasting local meats and vegetables to be eaten, and soup is one food that makes you slow down so you can really enjoy the ingredients. Both in the cooking and the eating, soup is at once a restorative and reflective experience.
One of my favorite sources for delicious soup ideas is Dairy Hollow House Soup & Bread by Crescent Dragonwagon (yes, that is her real name!). Soup & Bread is packed with soup-making basics, great recipes for soups, breads and salads and a great deal of personal and historical anecdotes. The recipes were created for use at the former Dairy Hollow House Inn several years ago, but have been translated to fit easily into the home kitchen. All sorts of soups are represented from broths to meat, bean, vegetable and fruit. The breads are equally diverse and delectable. Whether you are looking for an appetizer soup for Thanksgiving dinner or something low-cal but satisfying to counteract Thanksgiving dinner, you are sure to find a soup you love in Dragonwagon’s book. It is a wonderful resource. Dairy Hollow House Soup & Bread is on sale all month in our book aisle.
A great cookbook for celebration ideas is Moosewood Restaurant Celebrates. There are plenty of recipes for the upcoming holiday dinners and parties, but you’ll also find lots of new ideas for every event from Packer parties to next summer’s Rhythm & Booms picnic. Since these recipes are Moosewood-tested, you know they will work and taste great, too! This book would also make a wonderful gift for your favorite cook.
Stuff: The Secret Lives of Everyday Things by John C. Ryan and Alan Thein Durning illuminates the complete life cycle of some of the most commonly consumed items. Starting with your morning cup of coffee and continuing on through the newspaper, your sneakers, computer and more, Ryan and Durning will tell you exactly what is involved in your consumption: the natural resources used, the social cost to workers, the environmental cost of packaging, delivery and marketing. Stuff is an eye-opener and a thought provoking piece of work.
Is your back dreading the coming of winter—ice to slide on, heavy snow to shovel, holiday tensions? Maybe you need Back Care Basics by Mary Pullig Schatz, M.D. Dr. Schatz uses Iyengar-style yoga to help prevent future back problems and rehabilitate current problems. She begins by teaching how to evaluate your back and goes on to discuss “Home Base Poses” for everyone, along with relaxation techniques. The book continues with several chapters on specific back problems and the yoga poses that can be helpful. This book is a great resource for anyone who suffers with back pain.
Just a reminder that we have a good selection of 2005 calendars in stock right now—lots of different themes and formats from which to choose. Look for holiday greeting cards to send to friends and family and lots of gift ideas in all our general merchandise areas.