No matter what your approach to cooking, this weekend's Baltimore Book Festival has you covered.
To give you an idea of the range of offerings, at noon Sunday, chef Galen Sampson of The Dogwood in Hampden will do a cooking demonstration focused on healthful, seasonal eating.
The night before, cookbook author Ron Douglas talks up a book that helps home cooks make food just like KFC, The Cheesecake Factory and the like.
There are so many cookbook authors appearing at the festival that I'm just going to list them all. Before I get to that, let me just note one funny title that jumped out at me:
"By Any Greens Necessary: A Revolutionary Guide for Black Women Who Want to Eat Great, Get Healthy, Lose Weight, and Look Phat."
Here's the schedule and summaries of each author, provided by the Mount Vernon festival:
Friday, 12 p.m.-2 p.m., Dish Up Maryland at BBF!
Join us for a lunchtime celebration of the best of Maryland’s food traditions and the newly released Dishing Up Maryland. Author Lucie Snodgrass is joined by John Shields and other book contributors.
Lucie Snodgrass, "Dishing Up Maryland"
Lucie L. Snodgrass is an award-winning author whose food writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Baltimore Sun, and Vegetarian Times, where she was a regular columnist and contributing editor. "Dishing Up Maryland" contains a delicious assortment of the author’s own recipes, farm family recipes, and contributions from chefs who are committed to supporting local agriculture, cooking and eating sustainably, and procuring local ingredients. Along with 150 recipes, "Dishing Up Maryland" also features 35 short essays on people and restaurants that pay particular attention to local foods and local flavors that contribute to state tourism.
John Shields, "Coastal Cooking with John Shields" and contributor to "Dishing Up Maryland"
Often called "The Culinary Ambassador of the Chesapeake Bay," John Shields is the owner of Gertrude’s Restaurant at The Baltimore Museum of Art. He is the author of several popular cookbooks on Chesapeake and coastal cuisine, including "The Chesapeake Bay Cookbook," "The Chesapeake Bay Crab Cookbook," "Chesapeake Bay Cooking with John Shields" and "Coastal Cooking with John Shields." He is the host of the PBS show “Coastal Cooking with John Shields” and has written for several national publications.
Friday, 5:30 p.m., Happy Hour at the Baltimore Book Festival
Unwind at the Baltimore Book Festival with tips for making perfect cocktails and appetizer samples from the Hilton Baltimore’s Diamond Tavern!
Jason Wilson, "Boozehound: On the Trail of the Rare, the Obscure, and the Overrated in Spirits"
Jason Wilson is a Washington Post spirits columnist who traverses the globe to explore the origins of what we drink and the reasons behind our choices. In "Boozehound," he lets us tag along as he tracks unusual libations, uncovering the secrets of their flavors and sharing their fascinating histories in the process. Part travelogue, part spirits history, and part recipe collection, "Boozehound" is a journalistic excursion into lesser-known, forgotten, and misunderstood spirits for adventurous imbibers of liquors, bitters, and elixirs from around the world.
Valerie Peterson, "Peterson’s Happy Hour: Spirited Cocktails and Helpful Hints to Brighten Daily Life"
When the daily grind begins to grate, lifting your spirits can be as simple as…lifting a glass of spirits! "Peterson’s Happy Hour" prescribes the perfect liquid antidote for your household hindrances, workday worries, playtime problems, or vacation vexations. With simple instructions for making up-to-the-minute cocktail ingredients, an equipment glossary, and a list of resources, this book gives you the know-how and inspiration to concoct your own happy hours—on even the most miserable days. Because sometimes, when the day hands you lemons, a shot of homemade limoncello can do you a world of good.
Ray Foley, "The Ultimate Little Martini Book"
Bartenders don’t rely on just anyone to create the most classic American drink. They turn to Bartender Magazine, published by 30-year industry veteran Ray Foley, trusted by more than 150,000 barkeeps. Now, you can get your martinis straight from the top -- from Bartender and the best mix masters across America. From sophisticated to fun, this is the only martini book you’ll ever need.
Saturday, 12 p.m.
Tracye McQuirter, "By Any Greens Necessary: A Revolutionary Guide for Black Women Who Want to Eat Great, Get Healthy, Lose Weight, and Look Phat"
By Any Greens Necessary is a wake-up call for every black woman who dreams of getting healthy and slim without sacrificing great food and gorgeous curves. With inspiration, attitude, and expertise, Tracye McQuirter, M.P.H., shows you how to be healthy, hippy, and happy by eating plenty of delicious and nutritious plant-based foods.
Saturday, 1:30 p.m.
Norah O’Donnell and Chef Geoff Tracy, "Baby Love: Healthy, Easy, Delicious Meals for Your Baby and Toddler"
From MSNBC’s Norah O’Donnell and Chef Geoff Tracy is the must-have cookbook for the millions of busy parents who have taken on a healthier approach to eating—less processed, more organic—and who want to feed their little ones easy-to-make, cost-effective, completely nutritious and delicious meals. Learn how to make two weeks’ worth of Baby Love meals in less than one hour per week, at a fraction of the cost of jarred baby food. Say good-bye to bland and processed and hello to fresh and scrumptious!
Saturday, 3 p.m.
Lisa Jervis, "Cook Food: A Manualfesto for Easy, Healthy, Local Eating"
More than just a rousing food manifesto and a nifty set of tools, "Cook Food" makes preparing tasty, wholesome meals simple and accessible for those hungry for both change and scrumptious fare. If you want to eat healthier but aren't sure where to start, or if you've been reading about food politics but don't know how to bring sustainable eating practices into your everyday life, Cook Food will give you the scoop on how, while keeping your taste buds satisfied. With a conversational, do-it-yourself vibe, a practical approach to everyday cooking on a budget, and a whole bunch of animal-free recipes, Cook Food will have you cooking up a storm, tasting the difference, thinking globally and eating locally.
Saturday, 4:30 p.m.
Matt Lee and Ted Lee, "The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern"
Southern cuisine is arriving in a big way. Chefs all over the United States are digging deeper into southern traditions, taking on ingredients and techniques that reach beyond fried chicken and BBQ. At the forefront of the southern food revolution are Matt Lee and Ted Lee and their new book, "The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern." The brothers can speak to the state of southern food today with the perspective of knowing where it’s been, as well as where it’s going. They write recipes that are stylish, contemporary, and accessible, designed for today’s home cooks, and yet inspired by southern traditions and techniques.
Saturday, 6 p.m.
Ron Douglas, "More of America’s Most Wanted Recipes"
In his New York Times bestselling cookbook, "America’s Most Wanted Recipes," Ron Douglas proved that you don’t need to break the bank or even leave your house to enjoy the meals you love most. With his copycat recipes from the most popular chain restaurants across America—including The Cheesecake Factory, KFC, Olive Garden, P.F. Chang’s, Red Lobster, Outback Steakhouse, and many more—families can have these meals “on demand” from the comfort of their very own kitchen. In his latest cookbook, More of America’s Most Wanted Recipes: More Than 200 simple and Delicious Secret Restaurant Recipes--All for $10 or Less!, Ron gives readers even more delicious, time-saving, and easy ways to make restaurant recipes—and he guarantees that they’ll all cost $10 or less. Eating on a budget has never been easier.
Sunday, 12 p.m.
Healthy City Days
Healthy City Days presents tips on how to cook and eat more healthfully using seasonal ingredients – foods at the peak of their goodness. Featuring a cooking demonstration by Galen Sampson, native chef and owner of The Dogwood in Hampden.
Sunday, 1:30 p.m.
Daphne Oz, "The Dorm Room Diet"
Want to avoid the Freshman 15? Daphne Oz, daughter of New York Times bestselling authors Dr. Mehmet Oz and Lisa Oz, shares her 10-step plan for looking good, feeling great, and keeping fit away from home. "The Dorm Room Diet" is a winning combination of personal history and practical strategies that readers can put into practice right away. Daphne’s 10-step program shows college students how to stop eating out of emotional need and put food back in its place as a fuel provider, examining when, where and especially what they should eat to keep their minds in focus and their bodies in shape.
Sunday, 3 p.m.
Aviva Goldfarb, "SOS! The Six O’Clock Scramble to the Rescue: Earth-Friendly, Kid-Pleasing Dinners for Busy Families"
Like many busy moms, Aviva Goldfarb struggled to put a nutritious dinner on the table for her family amidst the chaos of daily life. In 2003, Aviva developed a system that helps parents take the “Scramble” out of the dinner hour by giving them an easy, online meal planning and grocery shopping system, along with fail-proof recipes. "SOS! The Six O’Clock Scramble to the Rescue" is not just a book addressing how to prepare delicious, quick, healthful family dinners. It uniquely brings the planet earth into the equation with family-focused tips for protecting the environment, supporting food sustainability, addressing “organic,” and avoiding our country’s food waste issue.
Sunday, 4:30 p.m.
Fany Gerson, "My Sweet Mexico"
While there are countless cookbooks about Mexican food, very little has been written about the vast and varied world of Mexican desserts, confections, beverages and breads. In "My Sweet Mexico," Fany Gerson explores the history behind the familiar landmark Mexican staples of her homeland, explains the significance of unfamiliar ingredients, and provides modern twists on old favorites and flavors. Fany Gerson graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and has worked in kitchens worldwide, including Michelin three-star Akelare in Spain, Eleven Madison Park, and Rosa Mexicano in New York, where she developed their acclaimed modern Mexican desserts.
Chopping cabbage for soup at The Dogwood. Sun photo by Algerina Perna