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  • Jen Harper 5:00 pm on 2018/02/26 Permalink
    Tags: and make-now recipes by nom nom paleo, coco morante, , henry fong, indian instant pot cookbook: traditional indian dishes made easy and fast, instant pot for two cookbook: 250 amazing instant pot recipes for 2, kathy hester, laurel randolph, make-over, michelle tam, pitre, ready or not!: 150+ make-ahead, shon brooks, the essential instant pot cookbook: fresh and foolproof recipes for your electric pressure cooker, the instant pot electric pressure cooker cookbook: easy recipes for fast & healthy meals, the life-changing magic of instant pots, the ultimate vegan cookbook for your instant pot: 80 easy and delicious plant-based recipes that you can make in half the time, urvashi   

    6 Cookbooks That’ll Make You Love Your Instant Pot Even More 

    The Instant Pot is all the rage, but sometimes it can feel a little daunting to integrate a new cooking device into your dinner prep routine. Or maybe you’re already head over heels for your IP, but you’re stuck on the same six tried-and-true recipes. Either way, we’ve combed through the stacks to find some awesome cookbooks that will help deepen your love for the do-it-all Instant Pot.

    The Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook: Easy Recipes for Fast & Healthy Meals, by Laurel Randolph
    This book counts itself among the most popular official Instant Pot cookbooks, and with the Instant Pot being a somewhat intimidating gadget for newbies, it can be helpful to get tips, tricks, and recipes right from the source. The first dozen pages include thorough, easy-to-follow operating instructions, as well as helpful conversion charts and hints specifically on the pressure cooking option for the Instant Pot. And the 100-plus recipes included are handily labeled with prep times, so you know before you start whether you’re looking at a quick 20-minute meal or 45-minutes or more. Plus, they’re simple to understand and execute and easily customizable to handle food allergies, intolerances, and preferences, making it a great guide for cooking for the whole family.

    Must-try recipe: Cinnamon-Raisin French Toast Bake

    The Essential Instant Pot Cookbook: Fresh and Foolproof Recipes for Your Electric Pressure Cooker, by Coco Morante
    Yummy go-to weekday meals that are ready in a fraction of the usual time thanks to the Instant Pot? Yes, please! This Instant Pot–authorized cookbook certainly delivers with 75 well-tested recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. Choose from beef, pork, poultry, veggies, beans, grains, and more to be the star of your next Instant Pot creation. The cookbook includes both classic recipes—whole roasted chicken with mushroom sauce—and contemporary dishes—buttery cauliflower mashed potatoes—sure to please palates across the board. Plus, with detailed step-by-step instructions, beautiful photos throughout, and detailed instructions on converting recipes for the Instant Pot, home cooks are sure to serve up a tasty dish.

    Must-try recipe: Irish Beef and Root Vegetable Stew

    Indian Instant Pot Cookbook: Traditional Indian Dishes Made Easy and Fast, by Urvashi Pitre
    Rather than turning to the trove of takeout menus when craving chicken tikka masala or palak paneer, grab this awesome Indian cookbook and your Instant Pot for some delicious, simple, and authentic fare. The book has 50 easy-to-follow recipes that have been vetted by both Indian food experts and Instant Pot pros, so you know you’re getting the best of both worlds. Plus, it has helpful tips and tricks on using the Instant Pot and includes all sorts of information on ingredient substitutions and stocking your pantry with the right ingredients—and trust us, it’s nothing that will be crazy-hard to track down, forcing you to go to eight different stores to make one dish.

    Must-try recipe: Punjabi Lobia Black-Eyed Peas with Spinach

    Ready or Not!: 150+ Make-Ahead, Make-Over, and Make-Now Recipes by Nom Nom Paleo, by Michelle Tam and Henry Fong
    This amazingly useful bestselling cookbook is the second from the James Beard Award–nominated creators of the crazy-popular blog, app, and cookbook Nom Nom Paleo. And it’s not specifically for the Instant Pot—with more than 150 recipes for make-ahead meals, sheet pan suppers, and, yes, Instant Pot dishes, this fun book filled with easy-to-follow instructions, beautiful photographs, and comic-book illustrations has everything for on-the-go people who want to provide delicious and healthy meals for themselves and their families. It takes you through everything, from stocking your pantry, to making dinner when you only have 20 minutes, to turning leftovers into a yummy dish. This cookbook is an especially helpful addition for anyone following a paleo diet or considering the switch.

    Must-try recipe: Pressure Cooker/Slow Cooker Kalua Pig

    Instant Pot for Two Cookbook: 250 Amazing Instant Pot Recipes for 2, by Shon Brooks
    Instant Pot cooking isn’t just about preparing a meal for a big crowd or a family of four or more—sometimes you just want to make something quick and delicious for you and your plus-one. Enter the Instant Pot for Two Cookbook. With a variety of 250 recipes that make just enough food for two—less waste!—the cookbook includes simple step-by-step instructions for each dish along with preparation time, cooking time, and nutrition information listed with each recipe. And with yummy picks for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and desserts, this volume will have you covered anytime you want to break out the Instant Pot for a two-serving dish.

    Must-try recipe: Chocolate Bread Pudding

    The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook for Your Instant Pot: 80 Easy and Delicious Plant-Based Recipes That You Can Make in Half the Time, by Kathy Hester
    Instant Pot dishes don’t have to be packed with meat and melty cheese, and this awesome vegan volume proves just how easy and delicious these meals can be. Bestselling author Kathy Hester takes you through the simple instructions on using your Instant Pot for pressure cooking, steaming, sautéing, and slow cooking some delectable vegan delights. And with her layered recipes, cooks can make their entree and side dishes all at the same time. So whether you’re a tried-and-true vegan, or trying a plant-based diet for the first time, Hester’s cookbook is a must-have addition to your Instant Pot library, as it also includes an introductory guide on the ins and out of using this handy device.

    Must-try recipe: The Best Not-Refried Black Beans

    What Instant Pot books do you consider must-haves?

    The post 6 Cookbooks That’ll Make You Love Your Instant Pot Even More appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Jen Harper 5:00 pm on 2018/02/21 Permalink
    Tags: , , hild, , , jubilee, margaret walker, michelle moran, nefertiti, nicola griffith, , Priya Parmar, , , tananarive due, the black rose, the dream lover, the invention of wings, , vanessa and her sister, women's history month,   

    10 Books Celebrating Influential Women in History 

    March is Women’s History Month, so to celebrate, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite historical fiction books about some awesome women through the ages. From the first professional female pilot and American’s first black female millionaire to well-known names like Zelda Fitzgerald, George Sand, and Nefertiti, these incredible women—and so many more—have had a profound impact on their communities, society, and the world. So in commemoration of Women’s History Month, these are her stories.

    The Invention of Wings, by Sue Monk Kidd
    With alternating narratives by two extraordinary female characters, Sue Monk Kidd’s The Invention of Wings tells the incredible story of real-life abolitionist pioneer Sarah Grimke and urban slave Hetty “Handful” Grimke in early 19th-century Charleston. On her 11th birthday, Sarah is given ownership of 10-year-old Hetty, and the two go on to influence each other and the destiny of women’s and African-American rights over the next 35 years. In real life, Hetty died of an “unspecified disease” after being severely beaten as punishment for Sarah teaching her how to read. But Kidd knew Hetty’s voice was imperative to telling this powerful story.

    Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, by Therese Anne Fowler
    Zelda Fitzgerald was so much more than the beautiful, outlandish wife of famed This Side of Paradise and The Great Gatsby author F. Scott Fitzgerald. And Therese Anne Fowler’s impeccably researched novel brings her to life, starting with her whirlwind courtship with young army lieutenant Scott when she was just 17 in Montgomery, Ala. Despite her parents’ disapproval, Zelda falls for Scott, and what follows is an incredibly readable tale of the couple’s fame at the dawn of the Jazz Age; their days galavanting around New York City, Paris, and more; the alcoholism and infidelity that plague their marriage; and the talented and often scandalous Zelda’s struggles with mental illness.

    Circling the Sun, by Paula McLain
    From the author of The Paris Wife comes another riveting read for historical fiction lovers. Paula McLain has crafted a compelling story about real-life female aviator and author Beryl Markham in 1920s colonial Kenya. Following an unconventional upbringing by her father and the native tribe who share his estate, the bold and fearless Beryl goes on to become a horse trainer—during a time when there were no female horse trainers—and later the first professional female pilot and a record-setting flyer. Beryl also finds herself tangled in a love triangle with hunter Denys Finch Hatton and writer Karen Blixen in this rich and passionate tale.

    Jubilee, by Margaret Walker
    Margaret Walker’s powerful novel set in the South during the American Civil War tells the true story of Vyry Brown, a biracial slave who was the daughter of a white plantation owner and a black enslaved woman. Vyry’s tale is based on the life of Margaret Duggans Ware Brown, the author’s great-grandmother. Walker is able to seamlessly blend together her family’s oral history she heard from her grandmother along with extensive research to offer a deeply moving and realistic portrayal of what life was like for slaves in the deep South—their struggles and desires—from their own perspective.

    Saint Mazie, by Jami Attenberg
    Bringing not only Mazie Phillips Gordon to life but also the sights and sounds of Jazz Age New York City, Jami Attenberg’s Saint Mazie tells the story of a movie ticket seller, an ordinary woman who did some extraordinary things. Witnessing the hungry, addicted, and injured homeless people roaming the Bowery, Mazie selflessly helped them the best she could, giving them money and opening the doors of The Venice theater to those in need. With details of her life imagined through fictional diary entries and account from those who knew her and only knew her through her journal, Attenberg’s witty book allows the spirit of Mazie to live on.

    The Dream Lover, by Elizabeth Berg
    Nineteenth-century French novelist George Sand was an eccentric and passionate woman who embraced an unconventional lifestyle in the pursuit of her dream of becoming a writer. In Elizabeth Berg’s richly captivating novel, readers are initially introduced to Sand as Aurore Dupin, a woman in the process of leaving a loveless marriage to start a new life in Paris. She changes her name, defies the restrictions on women in society, and takes on a who’s who of lovers and friends including Frédéric Chopin, Gustave Flaubert, Franz Liszt, Eugène Delacroix, Victor Hugo, Marie Dorval, and Alfred de Musset. Exploring themes of sexuality, gender, and art, The Dream Lover is a must-read for fans of historical fiction.

    Vanessa and Her Sister, by Priya Parmar
    History remembers writer Virginia Woolf much more so than her sister, painter Vanessa Bell. But Priya Parmar’s elegant and dazzling novel, set in early 20th-century London, brings Vanessa out of her sister’s shadow to show just how truly gifted and multidimensional Vanessa was as well as the profound influence she had on Virginia. The story is told through Vanessa’s invented journal entries and correspondence and follows the siblings as they buck convention and forge their own path toward artistic success. But when Vanessa unexpectedly falls in love, Virginia careens into madness, having been ever-dependent on her sister as a steadying force in her life.

    Hild, by Nicola Griffith
    For fans of A Game of Thrones and exquisitely written historical fiction, Nicola Griffith’s Hild sheds some light on the Dark Ages and one of its most pivotal women, Saint Hilda of Whitby. The well-researched tome set in seventh-century Britain introduces readers to Hild as a curious child with a plotting and ambitious uncle set on becoming overking of Angles. Hild finds a place at his side as the king’s seer, an indispensable role that leads to her being feared by many as she truly seems to see the future. Griffith manages to bring the harsh yet beautiful realities of Hild’s experiences to life in this impeccable read.

    Nefertiti, by Michelle Moran
    Michelle Moran transports readers to ancient Egypt in her novel about two influential royal women in history, Nefertiti and her younger sister, Mutnodjmet. Strong-willed Nefertiti is set to marry an unstable pharaoh named Amunhotep. Following her marriage, Nefertiti is beloved by the people of Thebes, but, unbeknownst to her, powerful priests are plotting against her heretical husband. The only person willing to brave the inevitable ramifications and tell Nefertiti of the plot is her younger sister. While Nefertiti longs for power, her sister only wishes for a quiet life and to follow the her heart. Moran manages to bring them both to life in vivid detail on the page.

    The Black Rose, by Tananarive Due
    Madam C.J. Walker was born Sarah Breedlove, the daughter of slaves on a Louisiana plantation in 1867; she went on to become America’s first black female millionaire. After being orphaned at age 7, married at 14, and widowed with a young child at 20, she was not content to maintain her lot in life. She became an inventive entrepreneur, creating hair and beauty products like a potion that became Wonderful Hair Grower and a hot comb that allowed black women to straighten their hair. Walker rose from poverty to become the head of a hugely successful company and a philanthropist for African American and women’s causes. The Black Rose, started by author Alex Haley before his death in 1992 and completed by writer Tananarive Due, is the remarkable fictionalized account of her riveting life.

    What fiction would you recommend about influential women in history?

    The post 10 Books Celebrating Influential Women in History appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Jen Harper 6:43 pm on 2017/05/05 Permalink
    Tags: , what's that you're reading?   

    6 Conversation-Starting Books to Read in Public 

    Chatting up strangers in public can be an awkward proposition, but having an awesome icebreaker like a book can be a great way to get the conversation going. Just be sure to steer clear of tomes with titles like Don’t Talk to Me and I Have Enough Friends Already, Thankyouverymuch or anything akin to comedian Scott Rogowsky’s fake book covers like Human Taxidermy: A Beginner’s Guide. And now that you’re clear on the don’ts, we can fill you in on our picks for do’s for books to read to spark some conversation in public.

    Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar, by Cheryl Strayed
    Author Cheryl Strayed—aka Sugar—the formerly anonymous online columnist for literary website The Rumpus, blends self-help and memoir in this slim book sure to get people talking. Strayed advises readers on topics like sex, love, family, and grief in this collection of advice from her Dear Sugar column with compassionate insight and her own heartbreaking stories. You’ll likely get the requisite, “Have you read Wild?” follow-up question more than a few times, but with this book, you’re likely to move on to much deeper topics fairly quickly.

    Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking, by Marcella Hazan
    Reading a cookbook? In public? Yes, just follow us here for a moment. It’s likely to attract attention because a cookbook as leisure reading is a bit unorthodox. Plus, it indicates an interest in yummy cuisine and learning how to cook it up yourself. And Marcella Hazan’s cookbook is an essential culinary bible for Italian cooking. You’ll get the scoop on pairing pasta shapes and sauces, learn to master an unbelievable four-ingredient tomato sauce, and hopefully chat up some other foodies in the process.

    Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling
    The world-famous books about a young wizard named Harry Potter are always an awesome choice—whether it’s your first or 50th time reading them. And whichever one of the seven books from J.K. Rowling’s bestselling series you select, you’re bound to attract the attention of fellow Potterheads. They might open with, “How many times have you read that one?” And then you guys can talk about which house you’re in, the multitude of fan theories about the stories, your thoughts on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and on and on and on …

    Think Like a Freak: The Authors of Freakonomics Offer to Retrain Your Brain, by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
    The title of Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner’s third nonfiction book alone is enough of a reason for passersby to take a second look at what you’re reading. And then once they take that second glance, they’ll likely recognize Freakonomics, the 2009 book that melded economic principles with everyday life and pop culture in a way that most had never seen before. And now with Think Like a Freak, the bestselling authors give us a look inside their thought process, teaching us how to think more creatively and rationally. Lots of food for thought and fodder for conversation.

    Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand
    Looking to invite some political discourse? Bring a copy of Ayn Rand’s 1957 book with you to the coffee shop, but be prepared: Those who have read this classic likely have strong feelings about it. It’s a dystopian future in which protagonist Dagny Taggart finds herself—economic conditions are grim, the government is doling out favors to the connected and exerting control over businesses, and the world is metaphorically bearing down on Atlas’s shoulders. So settle in for some lively conversation, and just try to keep things civil—and in case the conversation turns south, you’ve got a 1,000-page book to help bust your way through the crowd.

    Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
    You were likely assigned this book in high school and probably haven’t cracked it open since—or maybe you spaced on the summer reading and didn’t even get to it then. Regardless, reading it in public will likely provoke some comments and questions from intrigued strangers: “Hey, I read that in high school. Think it’s worth revisiting?” “Kinda feels like we’re living that book right now, doesn’t it?” “I still have nightmares about that pig’s head.” Nothing like a decapitated animal head on a stick to spark conversation.

    What books would you recommend as conversation-starters to read in public?

    The post 6 Conversation-Starting Books to Read in Public appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Jen Harper 1:00 pm on 2017/03/07 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , you are here: an owner's manual for dangerous minds   

    Jenny Lawson’s You Are Here: An Owner’s Manual for Dangerous Minds: Self-Help Coloring Book Is Profanely Profound 

    Jenny Lawson’s new book, You Are Here: An Owner’s Manual for Dangerous Minds, hits shelves March 7, and it couldn’t have arrived at a better time for me. Like 40 million other American adults, I have an anxiety disorder—it’s not who I am; it’s just something I have, like brown hair or farsightedness or the Moana soundtrack stuck in my head.

    Like a bunch of us, one of the things I do to cope with the disorder is take medication for it. Unfortunately, a few weeks ago, my medication stopped working—it happens sometimes. So imagine my sheer delight when, while waiting for the new med to start doing its job, a handy self-help coloring book (totally a real thing) lands on my doorstep, and it’s by none other than the hilariously candid, awesomely quirky, fellow mental-illness-haver Jenny Lawson. If you’re not familiar with Lawson’s writing, you should probably call in sick to work, hole up in a pillow fort, and dive into this woman’s wonderful and weird world: Her taxidermy collection includes a pegasus and at least two maniacally smiling raccoons. She brought a koala costume all the way to Australia in hopes of wearing it while holding a real koala. She’s afraid of finding dead bodies in public bathroom stalls. And she once fended off some neighborhood swans who allegedly wanted to eat her.

    Lawson is the writer behind popular blog The Bloggess and author of bestselling memoirs Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, which details her eccentric upbringing by a taxidermist father with a propensity for bringing home roadkill, and Furiously Happy, a funny, irreverent, and honest collection of essays about Lawson’s struggles with and triumphs over depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses.

    Her new book, You Are Here, is a somewhat different beast but every bit as magical. It’s still her voice, her heart, her humor on the page, but it’s only part narrative. It’s also part therapy—the kind that won’t cost you $150 an hour—part inspirational quotes, with some pages containing only two lines of funny, earnest, touching, and sometimes profane insights; and part grown-up coloring book, made up of Lawson’s own doodles of patterns, faces, and words created while waiting for an anxiety attack to pass.

    Another thing that sets this book apart from Lawson’s others is that it’s not just the tribe leader speaking to the members—you’re part of this. You are here. You, the reader, are necessary to create and finish this weird and wonderful book written by your bizarro BFF who just gets you. You can fill in the intricate black-and-white drawings with your own world of color; complete lists Lawson has started for you—like the five most outrageous things you’ve done, at least one of which is a lie; oust your demons by writing your fears on a completely black page and then ripping it from the book; and even draw your own doodles.

    I laughed out loud and cried—also out loud—while reading Lawson’s words and examining the pictures and her captions. And I’m excited to actually put gel pens to paper to color in these amazing images of whales, a knife-wielding pigeon, wacky women, and a bonnet-wearing T-rex, among others. Here’s hoping my OCD and perfectionism will allow me to push through and actually color the pictures without fear of ruining their beauty—something I think Lawson herself would say just isn’t possible.

    Mental illness tells us we are lost, unworthy, broken, and will never be whole. Mental illness lies. But Lawson doesn’t. Her honesty, humor, and vulnerability in this book will inspire you. And many of the vignettes in You Are Here will undoubtedly nestle into your brain and stay awhile. This is the one that has permanently set up residency in mine and perfectly sums up the power of this slim volume:

    “Once upon a time, there was a girl who forgot the rest of her story so she had to make it up as she went along. She kept it a secret all of her life. And one day when she was 99 she whispered this very confession to her husband. He paused and smiled kindly and told her that everyone was just making it up as they went along. And she was happy and sad all at once, and also a little bit relieved that she hadn’t known it all along. And that was the end.”

    You Are Here: An Owner’s Manual for Dangerous Minds is on B&N bookshelves now.

    The post Jenny Lawson’s You Are Here: An Owner’s Manual for Dangerous Minds: Self-Help Coloring Book Is Profanely Profound appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

  • Jen Harper 7:45 pm on 2016/12/06 Permalink
    Tags: , , happy bookmas, , ,   

    How to Throw a Book Nerd Holiday Party 

    The holiday season just has a literary air about it—maybe it’s the chilly weather, perfect for curling up in front of a fireplace with a good book; perhaps it’s the many memorable holiday scenes in literature from books like Little Women and Harry Potter; or it may just be a desire to unplug from the 100th airing of It’s a Wonderful Life. Whatever the reason, books and the holidays go together like hot cocoa and little marshmallows. So what better way to celebrate the season and your book nerdiness than with a bookish holiday party? Here’s everything you need to throw the perfect holiday lit fest for you and your book nerd pals!

    Literary theme
    You can get as specific or general as you want. On the specific end of the spectrum, you could have a Harry Potter–themed Yule Ball and have everyone don their finest dress robes or a Dickensian-style fete filled with mirth and merriment. The super-general It’s a Holly Jolly Book Nerd Holiday Party theme works too—but yes, the title does need a little work. We think you can take it from here.

    Bookish decor
    Get thee to Pinterest and start searching for DIY book trees—they’re super-easy to construct, and they won’t leave pine needles all over your floor. Making a DIY menorah can be a little trickier, since books and fire don’t make a great combo—unless your party theme is Fahrenheit 451. Set up holiday-themed books on end tables and the mantle, and hang some bookish ornaments from the tree to get everyone in the book nerd holiday spirit.

    Book-themed beverages
    Your options for party drinks—both alcoholic and non—are endless. There are so many awesome recipes for butterbeer, you can give the Three Broomsticks some serious competition. Plus, there are lots of fun lit-themed cocktail recipes like Are You There God? It’s Me, Margarita and The Last of the Mojitos from Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails with a Literary Twist. And for wine lovers, we can’t forget about literary-labeled wines like Ex Libris and Well Read (which is, well, red).

    Festive food
    You can cook to the theme of your party—a nice roast beast from How the Grinch Stole Christmas, anyone? Or have guests contribute a fave dish from literature—like Turkish Delight from The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe or Key lime pie from Nora Ephron’s Heartburn. Or encourage attendees to come up with a book-punny dish—One Flew Over the Couscous Nest or Lord of the Fries perhaps?

    Lit gifts
    Everyone loves party favors, but you don’t have to handle them for the whole crowd. Have everyone bring a wrapped book as a gift—and party attendees can either take one at random as they leave or swap them White Elephant–style. Or you can have the giver attach a “blind date with a book”–type note to the wrapped book with the genre and a brief review (that doesn’t reveal the plot), and everyone can just take the one that tickles their fancy.

    The post How to Throw a Book Nerd Holiday Party appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

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