Features & Stories

Newsletter: Making your Memorial Day weekend delicious + a new addition to your Mexican cookbook shelf

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 Memorial Day celebration cooking

With Monday May 29 Memorial Day, families across the US will be gathering to attend parades, remember loved ones, and celebrate the unofficial start of summer. Like all family holidays eating together is of central importance, with an emphasis on family favorites. We have plenty of good things to suggest, dishes that your loved ones can enjoy together.

Start things off with the earthy flavor and gorgeous color of this vegan recipe for Mama’s Beetroot Soup. For the main event an Old-Fashioned Family Fish Pie would make a great centrepiece for the table. And be ready to greet allcomers with some of Aunty Betty’s Gingerbread. Or take a look at this whole collection of Family Favorites for more ideas.
Dessert is the thing that makes a meal an occasion, so we’ve put together a collection of Family-Style Desserts for your Memorial Day Weekend. Try the crowd-pleasing Coconut, Banana and Chocolate Bread Pudding, or to really herald the start of summer opt for this custard-based Strawberry Tart.
If, like many of us, you have a fussy eater among your number, we have a newly added book just for you! My Fussy Eater by Ciara Attwell aims to help you cook for that tricky customer, and end the era of separate meals.

Her Chicken, Chorizo and Prawn Paella would keep everyone happy over Memorial Day celebrations.
Pictured above: Coconut Key Lime Pie from Lick The Bowl Good by Monica Holland
Discover more than 10,300 family favorites

A spotlight on the food of Veracruz

Zarela Martinez is a celebrated champion of Mexican food. She came to the US from Mexico in 1973, and served fine Mexican food at her restaurant Zarela from 1987 to 2011. She has published a handful of highly regarded books on the subject, and hosts the podcast Everything You Could Possibly Care to Know about Cooking Mexican from A to Z. Her PBS thirteen-part series focused on the food of the Veracruz region, the region she says has the most ‘surprising, imaginative, and seductive food.’
We are delighted to have Zarela’s Veracruz, Martinez’ book also focusing on the food of Veracruz and Mexico’s eastern coastal cuisine, newly on your ckbk bookshelf. With 144 flavorful recipes to choose from you are spoilt for choice! Try Spareribs with Chile-Spiced Pork Sausage, with some Fried Puffed Tortillas. Accompany that with a Mint Julep, and for something sweet munch on some more-ish Pumpkin Seed-Sesame Candy.
To read more about how Martinez came to focus on the food of this region of Mexico, read our feature Behind The Cookbook: Zarela's Veracruz.  

Colorful and packed with vibrant flavors, Mexican food is a worldwide favorite. Martinez's plus other books on our Mexico Bookshelf bring you classic recipes from across the country, from the home, from restaurants and from street food sellers so you can bring those great dishes into your own kitchen.

Ingredient spotlight: Chilli 

Chilli peppers such as the jalapeño, poblano, serrano, habañero and searingly hot bird’s-eye are all fruit of the capsicum plant. Amazingly, there are more than 50,000 varieties of chillies in the world, each one with its own distinct flavor and level of heat. Whenever you cook with chillies, wear rubber gloves or wash your hands thoroughly after handling them. Be sure to understand the level of heat of the variety you are cooking with and use a little chilli to start with, adding more with a measured hand as you taste your dish. There’s no going back if you’ve added too much!
Once you’ve got the taste for cooking with chilli you can enjoy the aromatic sweetness and heat they bring to dishes from across the globe. South American, Asian and Indian cuisines are just some of the culinary doors open to you. Try Vietnamese Rice Rolls with Chinese Peanut Chili Beef or these Toritos (Little Peppers Stuffed with Garlic, Shrimp and Oaxaca Cheese) – just two of the great recipes in our 12 Ways with Jalapeños and Other Chilli Peppers collection.
Try adding a touch of chilli to desserts, the bright heat can balance well with sweetness.

In particular, chilli pairs well with vanilla, chocolate and tropical fruits such as mango and pineapple. Try a Chocolate, Chilli and Lemongrass Tart, or this Chilli, Ginger & Mango Crumble.

6 of the best doughnuts

May 20 to 28 is National Doughnut Week, a week when bakeries in the UK sell doughnuts in aid of The Children’s Trust. Wherever you live, and whatever charity you choose to support, doughnuts are always a good idea.

Dadi’s Banana and Fennel Seed Gulgulay Doughnuts

from Andaza by Sumayya Usmani

Chip-Crusted Mac ‘N’ Cheese Donut

from Savory vs Sweet by Shalean Ghitis and Stephanie Ghitis

Vanilla Cream-Filled Doughnuts

from Flour by Joanne Chang

Doughnuts with Honey

from Recipes from Ukraine by Yurii Pryiemskyi and Simon Boyle

Apple Beignets

from Dark Rye and Honey Cake by Regula Ysewijn

Potato Donuts

from Donuts by Elinor Klivans
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