To kick off a month of atypical non-Grinchy behavior, I will be raffling off some of my favorite books to you, my loyal readers! If you've recently arrived here after reading the Edible Boston article on local food blogs, and you aren't sure you have what it takes to be a loyal reader, I'm hoping free stuff will convince you. I have a lot to give away and there are only three weeks until Christmas or something crazy like that, so check in often if you don't want to miss your chance to win. Once the clock strikes 12 on Christmas Eve, I'm keeping whatever's left like some sort of greedy Cinderella who misses the point of Christmas entirely.
Starting us off is Yankee Magazine lifestyle editor Amy Traverso and her great new cooking tome and apple encyclopedia, The Apple Lover's Cookbook. Think apples are all the same? Oh ho ho, you are so wrong. So wrong! Let Amy show you the error of your ways with a primer of 59 apple varieties, from quirky heirlooms to newfangled hybrids. Then be grateful that she was the one that had to do all that research and not you.
Moving on to recipes, there's literally not a single dish contained in this book that I don't want to eat. Apple crisp? Don't mind if I do. Apple pie? You bet! Cider doughnuts? Hell, yeah. Apple-gingersnap ice cream? STOP TORTURING ME!!! It's not just sweet stuff, either. There are recipes for sausage, apple, and cheddar strata, sweet potato and apple latkes, and apple cider-braised turkey with applejack-sage gravy. I made the braised pork shoulder with hard cider, Calvados, and prunes a few weeks ago, and it was so good that I refused to eat anything else for a whole 18 hours so as not to taint the memory. (That's a personal record for me, by the way.)
Quite simply, this is a book everyone needs to have. I mean, unless you hate apples. Is it even possible to hate apples? I might argue you're just confused. Maybe it's scrapple you hate? Anyway, to be entered to win, simply leave a comment on this post with your favorite variety of apple and/or apple preparation, and a commenter will be selected at random by one of those Internet-based number generators. Comments will close at 10 pm EST on Monday, 12/5. And if you don't win this raffle, there's still plenty of time to put the book on your Christmas list. That's the second best way to get free stuff!
Many thanks to W.W. Norton for donating a copy of this beautiful book!