In Winter’s Kitchen by Beth Dooley

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*I received a copy of In Winter’s Kitchen by Beth Dooley for review. Opinions are my honest thoughts. This post contains affiliate links – purchasing items through them gives back to me at no extra cost to you*

In Winter's Kitchen by Beth Dooley review.

About In Winter’s Kitchen:

Beth Dooley arrived in Minnesota from her native New Jersey with deep curiosity, a lifelong love of food, and a few negative preconceptions about her new home in “America’s breadbasket”. And her impressions upon arrival were unpromising: “Do people here really eat swampy broccoli, iceberg lettuce, and fried chicken for lunch every day?” This land of casserole, major agribusiness, and endless fields seemed to be the polar opposite of her upbringing in her grandmother’s kitchen. 

But assumptions about her new neighbors quickly faded as she discovered a local food movement strong enough to survive the toughest Midwest winter. 

When I first picked up In Winter’s Kitchen, I didn’t really know what I was expecting. Certainly what I thought I was going to read, is not what I found myself in. Originally I assumed I’d be reading another memoir based around food. While it could be classified as that, it was also so much more. 

Beth Dooley has created a meal out of her book, and top it off, she has included simple recipes at the end to extend her meal beyond the book and into our home. I don’t have to pretend I’m smelling the bread she bakes because I can bake it myself. Along with other treats using my local ingredients. My absolute favorite quote comes from her chapter on Wheat.

We have the intelligence, if not the wisdom, to grow beautiful, bountiful wheat. How do we teach people the value of this reality? Make them good bread.

-Beth Dooley, In Winter’s Kitchen

The smell of bread baking takes me back to my own mother’s kitchen and with it many other memories of baking, cooking, canning and experimenting with ingredients.  

In Winter's Kitchen by Beth Dooley review.

Each chapter of Dooley’s work had me pondering deeper the state of our food. I don’t feel guilty when I buy GMO non-organic produce, but I also don’t search out the local vendors perhaps as thoroughly as I should. There is something about our food and knowing it’s origins that create much more than a pretty tablescape. When we become connected to the process through the stories Beth tells and those we can find at our own local Farmer Markets, I believe our relationship with food will change – and for the better.

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