Sunday, April 10, 2011

A Review of One More Honey Cookbook!

Avner Laskin. (2008) Honey:  More than 75 Delicious Recipes (New York: Sterling Publishing Co.). $15

Laskin's cookbook just arrived and I'm happy to report that it's a lively little book of recipes, with some great ideas for using honey and highlighting its unique flavors.  The author describes himself as an "artisan baker and artisan chef" and he is the author of a number of cookbooks, including ones on coffee, nuts, olives and hummus.  He blogs at

The cookbook is divided into recipes for breakfast (including honey crumpets);  baked goods (honey carrot cake); a small section for salads and entrees (honey Waldorf salad and calamari in honey garlic sauce); and desserts and drinks (honey cinnamon milkshake spiked with brandy).  While some of the recipes hardly seem worth it--do we need to be told to put honey on oatmeal?--there are many tempting entries, including honey bao (Chinese steamed buns).  The book also includes photos for some of the dishes.

Here's a simple recipe for a great little bruschetta appetizer that we adapted from the book:

Honey and Blue Cheese Bruschetta
1/2 loaf of French bread or baguette (approx. 12 inches long)
3 ounces good quality blue cheese (like Maytag), crumbled
2 tablespoons honey--a dark, fall honey would be great with this.
1 tablespoon walnuts, crushed
Preheat oven to 400 F.  Slice the bread on a diagonal into 1/4 inch slices.  Place on a cookie sheet and toast both sides until golden brown.  Remove toasted bread from oven and sprinkle with the crumbled cheese.  Drizzle honey on each slice and garnish with walnuts.  Serves 4.  You could play around with the cheeses and nuts for a nice variety:  try goat cheese, summer honey, orange zest and almonds or,crumbled feta, summer honey, roasted red peppers and pine nuts.

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