Read & Feed

By Gretchen Goswitz – January 1, 2016
photo by Brian Fitzsimmons

Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto
Aaron Franklin & Jordan Mackay 

Aaron Franklin, of the highly praised Franklin Barbecue joint, has become a household name in Austin thanks to his award-winning menu of meats. The popular pitmaster shares his knowledge behind the art and science of all aspects involved with smoking meats so that readers can achieve the best barbecue in their own backyard. Don’t expect to find coveted recipes or secret spices; instead, this book is a guide, providing concepts, plans, and pointers. Even if you incorporate just a few of Franklin’s techniques, your meat-smoking skills will see a noticeable improvement.

A Bowlful of Broth
Miranda Ballard, Ryland Peters & Small

The glory of broth is that is can be made from vegetables, animal cuts or fish bones, and can be consumed as a drink, flavoring, or used as a base in soups and stews. This simplistic yet versatile liquid also comes with the added bonus of enormous health benefits. If you’re trying to live more sustainably, making broth out of unwanted or leftover food is a great way to implement that practice. Page after page, the recipes will have you craving soup for every meal.

Bread-Free Bread
Nerissa Oden

For those who are abiding by a gluten-free, grain-free diet, finding a great bread replacement can be a challenge. Luckily, Nerissa Oden has come up with the most creative recipes for bread-free bread. The book is broken down in a way that teaches you how to make a number of sandwich breads, muffins, crackers, biscuits, cookies and cakes, so you can be set for any and every occasion. Even if you’re not on any kind of elimination diet, the unique recipes like lemon garlic spinach bread, Texas traditional okra bread, or mushroom biscuits, will rival your traditional loaf and lure you into trying something new.

Austin Breakfast Tacos
Mando Rayo & Jarod Neece

Take a trip outside of Texas and you’ll find non-natives inquiring, “What’s a breakfast taco?” to which you should inform them that although there’s a taco for every occasion and persuasion, the breakfast taco is king. This book contains mouthwatering recipes from your favorite joints in the Capital City, as well as stories, interviews and profiles on the people who crafted them and major influencers in the city (such as John Conley of the Austin Marathon and Tim and Karrie League of the Alamo Drafthouse, to name a few). Although no two breakfast tacos in this city are the same, the authors masterfully convey the essence of what makes the Austin breakfast taco a treasure. As Juan Meza aka Don Juan of Juan in a Million says, “Tacos are easy!”—and we agree. That’s the beauty of it.

Vegan Survival Guide to Austin
Carolyn Tracy & Julie Wernersbach

Although Texas is a meat mecca, Austin still remains a vegan-friendly city. Not only does this book primarily contain all the hot spots for vegan fare, but it also includes an entire chapter dedicated to the culture and community in Austin. It pays tribute to notable vegans in the area, suggests locally-made grocery staples, and throws in a few recipes throughout. This exhaustive assessment makes vegan living easy, readily-accessible, and above all, delicious. 

The Natural Beauty Solution
Mary Helen Leonard

Technically, this book isn’t a cookbook or a book devoted to food, but it does contain recipes and the ingredients needed are probably already in your kitchen. What goes on your body is just as important as what goes into it, which is why this Austin author gathered her simplest yet most effective recipes for anyone wanting to make a break from commercial skin and haircare products. Additionally, this book educates by troubleshooting common issues like acne, eczema, dandruff and more.


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