Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Complete Root Cellar Book

Eating fresh fruits and vegetables are important for a healthy lifestyle. But how many times do we go to the store or our local farmers’ market and buy beautiful produce only to have it spoil and go uneaten? For generations, root cellars have been used to store fresh fruits and vegetables in a safe environment. Today, root cellars are making a comeback and a new book shows you how to build and utilize one yourself. THE COMPLETE ROOT CELLAR BOOK: Building Plans, Uses and 100 Recipes (Robert Rose; May 2010; Softcover/$24.95; ISBN: 978-0-7788-0243-3) by craftsman Steve Maxwell and home economist Jennifer MacKenzie, takes a fresh look at the art and science of building and stocking your own root cellar and eating healthy all year round.

Root cellars help us make the most of our food budget by allowing us to stock up on fresh produce at low prices during seasonal harvests. A root cellar can create a lifestyle of healthy eating. The seemingly simple act of visiting your cellar, examining your stores, and carrying something delicious up to the kitchen affords simple satisfactions that can’t be sealed in cellophane.

Most people think of root cellars as residing in a home basement or hole in the ground, but THE COMPLETE ROOT CELLAR BOOK changes that perception by providing detailed and illustrated construction guides for making five different and attractive root cellar options, including never before-seen strategies for apartment- and condo-dwellers and homeowners without a basement.

There’s truly no better or more natural a way to store food than in a root cellar. Everything you need to know about this time-honored tradition can be found within the pages of this book. Part 1: Root Cellaring in the 21st Century, provides DIYer’s four root cellar options:
- Making a Standard Cold Room Work
- Building a Walk-In Basement Root Cellar
- The Walk-In, Stand-Alone, Underground Root Cellar
- Outdoor Root Cellaring
- Root Cellars for Condos, Townhouses and Warm Climates

And once you have decided which type of root cellar to build, Steve outlines beautiful and convenience-boosting Finishing Touches for Your Root Cellar.

After you have built your root cellar, the authors provide must-know information on how to choose, store and manage a supply of vegetables, fruits and preserves, as well as 100 recipes that incorporate stored food products into both classic and innovative dishes, with a focus on good nutrition. Recipes cover everything from Soups; Salads and Appetizers; to Side Dishes; Main Courses; and Desserts. There is even a section on condiment recipes. Jennifer’s healthy and delicious recipes include:
Root Cellar Medley Soup Sweet and Tangy Beet and Carrot Salad
Broccoli and Apple Slaw Classic Beef Pot Roast
Farfalle with Hearty Greens Chicken and Olive Ragoût with Dijon Potatoes
Chocolate Citrus Trifle �____ Walnut and Orange Baked Apples

Successful root cellaring delivers an opportunity to cultivate skills and hone gourmet insight in a way that is both fulfilling and globally responsible. THE COMPLETE ROOT CELLAR BOOK delivers both the vision and the know-how to empower us to make root cellaring a part of everyday life, and to enjoy richer food experiences because of it. How much a part of everyday life depends on the individual, but Steve warns that “the more you bring food adventures into your home, the more important really good food becomes.”


Steve Maxwell is a cabinet-maker, builder and award-winning home improvement author. He is also a photographer, videographer and seminar leader. He has been helping people renovate, build and maintain their homes for more than 20 years. Steve’s magazine and newspaper articles appear in publications across North America and he is a regular contributor to The Toronto Star, Ottawa Citizen, Canadian Home Workshop, Cottage Life, and Mother Earth News. His “how-to” DVDs, videos and online books have been the favorite of DIYer’s everywhere. Steve, his wife, and five children, live in a stone and timber home they designed and built on their 90-acre farm on Manitoulin Island.

Jennifer MacKenzie is a professional home economist, food writer, editor and cooking instructor, with over 15 years experience in recipe development and testing. In 1999 she started her own food consulting business, FOODWORX, and shares her passion for delicious, easy-to-make, nutritious food in several national and regional publications. Jennifer has been the official Milk Calendar recipe developer for the past several years, and is a familiar face to consumers on CHEX Television on NewsWatch where she can be seen cooking up tasty and nutritious recipes on-air. Jennifer is the co-author of several best-selling cookbooks including The Complete Curry Cookbook, The Complete Book of Pickling, The Dehydrator Bible and The Complete Trail Food Cookbook. In 2005, Jennifer, along with her husband, Chef Jay Nutt, opened Nuttshell Next Door Café, a friendly, neighborhood gathering place. Jennifer has served as a canning competition judge for several years in Canada and lives in Buckhorn, Ontario.

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