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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Back to Basics: Traditional Kitchen Wisdom - Andrea Chesman/Editor (Non-Fiction)

Released February 2010

Spring's here and now is the time for gardening. Back to Basics: Traditional Kitchen Wisdom is a handy guide to growing and storing crops. It also covers topics like garden design, composting and keeping chickens and bees. In addition, you'll learn how to make your own beer and wine, as well as soda.

The book is set up so that it's easy to find the information quickly. By using the handy tips in this book, you can cut your grocery bill, eat healthier and enjoy the satisfaction of knowing you make it yourself. Make jellies and jams, enjoy homemade relish and much more.

Overall, I enjoyed this book, but there are aspects where I would have appreciated more in-depth advice. My neighbor keeps bees, so I know the ins and outs of beekeeping. I've been tempted to try raising chicken, and appreciated the information on that, but this is one section I would have enjoyed more if there was more information provided. There's nothing on keeping chicken over a winter in a cold northern climate. While there is advice on keeping young chicks warm enough, nothing is mentioned keeping adult birds warm.

The guide on blanching times for freezing vegetables is extremely useful, as are the recipes for jellies, jams, relishes, pickles and more. Making beer is a fun hobby and the information within is enough to get you started. I highly recommend Charles Papazian'sThe Complete Joy of Homebrewing Third Edition (Harperresource Book) if you want to do more than dabble in homebrewing.

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