Cookbook Alert: The Old Farmer’s Almanac Everyday Baking Book

When I’m not baking pies, I’m…well…baking other stuff. Including pies.

I can’t help myself. I know some people think it’s strange that my BFF is my oven. And some ask me if I ever get tired hanging out in my kitchen hours and hours each day. The simple answer is: nope. I really don’t.

So when my old friends at The Old Farmer’s Almanac called a while back to see if I’d be interested in writing a new baking book for them, I immediately told them: Maybe. I’m pretty busy right now…starting up a new pie website and all…

At least, that’s what I said into the phone. (Old friends or not, I was playing hard to get.)

The No-More-Tears Pie Pastry Course

What I was thinking was: Are you kidding me?! Write a cookbook for one of the most trusted brands in America? The oldest, continuously published periodical in the country? When do I begin?!

So begin I did, testing, retesting, tweaking and consuming unabashed servings of my favorite 118 baking recipes of all time. It was a baking marathon for the record books. Evening would roll around and my long suffering wife, Bev, would ask What’s for dinner? All l could do was shrug my shoulders and point to the acres of muffins, quick loaf breads, cakes, cookies and, yes – pies too – scattered across the landscape of our kitchen. Your choice!

To my delight, many of those recipes would be photographed by one of the top food photographers in the country, Becky Luigart-Stayner, whom I’ve known and admired for years. Her gorgeous pictures grace nearly every page of the book. (NOTE: That is NOT her pie photo above; it is my own lame attempt to shoot the Chocolate Chess Pie from the book. I occasionally take pictures of my own stuff, primarily to remind myself that I should stay near the oven and not the lens.)

That’s the good news. The other good news is the price: just $9.99 for this large format paperback. An incredible bargain.

The bad? Well, it’s not officially out yet. The stores will carry it sometime in September, until which time you’ll have to put up with me teasing you here with a few drool-inducing photos of Becky’s and perhaps a sneak peak at a recipe or two. You won’t mind, will you? So stay tuned.

Ken Haedrich