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Enjoy the bounty of summer


Check out some cookbooks from West Linn's library

It’s that time of year when gardens are starting to burst with summer’s bounty. Tables at farmers markets are piled high with fresh veggies and delicious summer berries. CSA (community supported agriculture) boxes are stuffed with local produce, fresh eggs, bread and more. 

by: SUBMITTED - Check out The Berry Bible and whip up something delicios.

The next thing you know your kitchen is full of tomatoes, peaches, green beans and, of course, zucchini.

So what do you do with it all? Here are some cookbooks that will help you whip up some fantastic dishes:

“Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch” by Nigel Slater

This is a great cookbook for vegetable gardeners. The author highlights 29 vegetables, including cabbage, eggplants, parsnips, spinach and tomatoes. He provides detailed information about each one including different varieties, the best seasoning for each one and recipes. My favorite is the leek and potato cakes.

“In Season” by Sarah Raven

This book lives up to its title, telling you what is available in each season and how to cook it. While it doesn’t cover every single fruit and veggie, it does include a good mix of the usual (zucchini) and the unusual (elderflower). I recently tried the tagliolini with fava beans and beurre blanc which was delicious and not hard to make. I never tried fava beans before and found them to be quite tasty.

“Earth to Table” by Jeff Crump and Bettina Schormann

This is an eclectic book of recipes, chef profiles and advice. The book is divided into seasons, with a collection of recipes for each. There are recipes for everything from stinging nettle linguine to apple tarts to oatmeal molasses bread. One of my favorites is the potato and rosemary pizza. There are also “how-to” sections that talk about canning, planting an herb garden and strategies for shopping at a farmers market. I enjoyed the corn on the cob with chili lime butter.

by: SUBMITTED - Cooking in the Moment will help you use up your garden produce.

“Cooking in the Moment” by Andrea Reusing

This book is great because it has a little bit of everything. Full of big color photographs and a wide variety of recipes, you’ll find something for all seasons here. The author includes veggie dishes, seafood, drinks, desserts, salsa and much more. There are also handy sections such as the two-page photo spread identifying several dozen tomato varieties, as well as short stories about food.  My favorite recipe is the red lentil soup with smoked paprika.

“The Berry Bible” by Janie Hibler

With the bounty of summer berries available in Oregon how can you not be tempted to make something spectacular with them? Do you like the sound of strawberry ice cream soda, marionberry biscuits, raspberry vinaigrette and blueberry-loganberry ginger jam? If so, then this book is for you. My favorite is the blackberry muffin recipe, which has cinnamon and coconut.