Best Food & Gardening Books of 2014


My personal picks with one caveat: these books may not have been published in 2014 but that’s when I got around to reading them.

1. Eating Wildly: Foraging for Life, Love and the Perfect Meal by Ava Chin – At first, I was disappointed that this was more memoir than how-to forage guide but I quickly got over that. Ava Chin uses her childhood, love for18144094family and traditions, and coming to terms with her past quite beautifully as a backdrop to how her love for foraging and food fits into the whole scheme of things. This was one of my favorite and more memorable books I read in 2014, not just among food and gardening type books.

2. Backyard Winter Gardening: Vegetables Fresh and Simple, in Any Climate, Without Artificial Heat or Electricity – The Way It’s Been Done for 2,000 Years by Caleb Warnock

16235813 I struggle with winter in NY for many reasons ,one being that it’s a sad time for gardening. So very sad. I’ve been looking for low cost ways to extend our gardening season and this book covered all I needed to know. Even though a lot of methods seem to be more practical for traditional large scale/ large space gardens, it would be quite easy to adapt to fit alternative garden spaces. There’s also good info on food storage for the winter. Can’t wait to put some of the ideas in this book  into practice.

3. The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook: From Lamb Stew to “Groosling” – More Than 150 Recipes Inspired by the Hunger Games Trilogy(The Hunger Games Companions) by Emily Ansara Baines

I took this out of the library thinking it would be cute -neato to have a Hunger Games themed dinner some night (I have kids,you know) but I ended up legitimately loving this book as an actual practical cook book for anyone who is a fan of11206339 foraging,hunting, and frugal meals. There are some more decadent recipes,too, but they aren’t complicated or require much in the way of ingredients that would be hard to come by.  As far as book tie-ins go, this was genuinely well thought out and a perfect compliment.

4. The Forest Feast: Simple Vegetarian Recipes from My Cabin in the Woods
by Erin Gleeson – This is one of the most beautiful books I’ve ever seen.  It’s a little like holding a well designed food blog in your hands  but it’s more creative than that. It has an art journal feel to it.
The recipes are all truly simple vegetarian recipes. Nothing fussy or elaborate. One of my biggest criticisms of v18405511egetarian cookbooks is that they are often way too complicated and require ingredients you have to go on gourmet supermarket hunt for (after you’ve googled what the hell it is you’re looking for). Not the case with this one,thankfully.

5. One Acre Homestead by Sara Simmons McDonald – The author assumes that if you’re reading her book , you probably know how to garden and homesteading basic ,so this isn’t really a beginner’s guide but more of a “This is how I did it and all the ways I screwed up and what I learned,too”  . Inspiring for someone who has an acre of land who wants to achieve self-sufficiency and food sovereignty.

I don’t really do resolutions but maybe for 2015, I’ll try to do more complete book reviews on a regular basis. I was thinking about doing a Cook the Book series, maybe. That could be fun.
I do manage to update my Good Reads when I’m done reading things. You can follow me over there: Goodreads!

11 thoughts on “Best Food & Gardening Books of 2014

  1. Great list! I’ll be sure to check these out of the library if I can find them all.

    Have you read Fresh Food from Small Spaces: The Square-Inch Gardener’s Guide to Year-Round Growing, Fermenting, and Sprouting by R.J. Ruppenthal? I really liked what I could recall of it. It’s been a while since I’ve read it.

  2. I haven’t heard of the Hunger Games book, my kids will love that one! I am into Fran Sorin’s Digging Deep at the moment, an inspirational book of gardening and life, is her site. IF you haven’t heard about her then I think you are missing out!

    1. Thanks for the recommendation! I went to her blog & twitter and notice we have quite a few friends in common but somehow we’ve never crossed paths. I’ll have to add her book to my to-read pile

  3. So wonderful that Eating Wildly made this great list! Some of these like the Forest Feast, I knew, but others are new to me. Thank you for the book tips (and the love).

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