Have you ever met the Canal House ladies? A few months ago, I noticed that several stacks of brightly colored, slightly slim volumes had popped up at my friend Pam's Red Ticking. Of course, Pam has impeccable taste. What she loves, I love--especially when it comes to food.
So I was tickled to open a birthday gift from her and see the sunny yellow cover of Canal House Volume Four waiting for me. And tickled even more to turn to the first chapter and find it titled "It's Always 5 O'Clock Somewhere."
Ah, I thought, leave it to Pam to introduce me to new friends and kindred spirits in the kitchen!
My new cooking buddies are Christopher Hirsheimer and Melissa Hamilton. Between them they have 30 years in the food industry, from Saveur to Martha Stewart Living to Cook's Illustrated. But when they decided to produce their own book, they went it alone and self published, with no major imprint behind them, no marketing and no distribution besides independent stores and the internet.
Canal House Cooking prints three seasonal volumes each year. Pam knows I love farm stand cooking in the summer and Volume 4 is filled with perfect preps for the big juicy tomatoes, ripe berries and fresh herbs I'll be bringing home in the months ahead. And the photos look good enough to eat, too.
If you live too far away to wander into the Ticking and scoop up a few volumes of your own, you can find them here. And their blogs, Canal House Cooks Lunch and Life At Canal House are pretty delicious, too.
What are your favorite ingredients for summer cooking?