Feast your eyes on this literary cookbook
August 11, 2009
By Chantelle Lusebrink
Ever wonder what dinner with your favorite author may be like?
Well, you may not dine with them, but you can cook what they’d cook for themselves, thanks to the King County Library Foundation’s new book, “Literary Feast: The Famous Authors Cookbook.”
“The uniqueness of it makes it a wonderful gift for readers, for cooks and for people interested in both,” said Jeanne Thorsen, foundation director. “I think it is something people will really enjoy and at the same time, help support literacy in our community, which people feel very strongly about.”
The book includes nearly 100 drink, food and dessert recipes from authors and includes 92 author profiles with their personal perspectives.
The book includes recipes from the kitchens of famous local authors, like Deb Caletti, who has five fiction novels based in and around Issaquah.
“It was just such an easy thing, because I’m the ultimate library lover. The library, to me, is my sanctuary and the King County Library System is a sanctuary, plus one of the best library systems in the country. How can you not want to support it?” Caletti said. “And I owe them forever for my endless usage. I spend more hours there than anywhere else, besides my home. If I’m lost, my family knows I’m in one of the libraries.”
Caletti included her favorite sugar cookie recipe, handed down from her grandmother, to her mother and to her.
“The recipe has been in my family for a long time,” she said. “It’s one of those that are stained and messy, because it’s always out. It’s also a dangerous recipe, because it has every bit of fat and sugar for those times when you need every bit of fat and sugar.”
The recipe calls for two types of sugar and plenty of butter, making it nearly a shortbread cookie, she added.
But the concoctions you can cook up don’t just come from local authors. See what nationally acclaimed authors, like J.A. Jance, David Baldacci, Peg Kehret and Nancy Leson, are cooking up in their kitchens, as well as local chef Tom Douglas, Dr. Arthur Agatston (author of the “South Beach Diet”) and Greg Atkinson, author of the “Atkinson Diet.”
“I was really pleased, one, with the number of authors who wanted to participate — in fact, we’re starting a file for volume No. 2 — but also that other than a cookbook with someone’s name and their favorite recipe, the book talks about the authors themselves and their recipes, which really personalizes it,” Thorsen said.
It’s an easy book to cook your way through, which is what one of the library’s employees is doing now, she said.
“I would have never imagined that a cookbook about top writers would be so illuminating and entertaining,” Terry LaBrue, project author and local writer, said in a press release. It “gave me a chance to peer over their shoulders and into their lives.”
The book costs $22.95, plus tax and shipping, but proceeds benefit programs sponsored by the library foundation, like an eight-week Spanish literature seminar series, Study Zone tutoring help, Global Reading Challenge and Summer Reading programs for students.
Get the book
Order ‘Literary Feast: The Famous Authors Cookbook’ through the King County Library System Foundation link at www.thrifbooks.com/kclsf or call 369-3448 to reserve a copy that you can pick up at the library’s service center, 960 Newport Way N.W.
Grandma-Mom’s Sugar Cookies
By Issaquah author Deb Caletti
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup butter
1 cup oil
2 eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Roll into small balls. Press with cookie press or glass bottom dipped in sugar.
Bake in a
for 10-12 minutes.
Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.