While brownies and other goodies are good all year round, there are all kinds of baked goods that have a more seasonal appeal to them. Rich, spiced baked goods find their audience on cold winter days and lighter, fruitier desserts tend to be the stars of the show in the summer. Seasonal baking is partly definite by what is in season, but is also defined by the season and the types of food that the weather puts us in the mood for. In Honey and Jam: Seasonal Baking from My Kitchen in the Mountains, you’ll find a variety of recipes for every season, neatly divided up into four main categories.
The introduction of the book includes lots of great information about seasonal fruits (and veggies), from tips on how to choose the best ones to how to store them once you have them home. Storage is key when picking up lots of fresh produce, as otherwise you would have to bake everything all on the same day! You’ll also find a number of baking tips that apply to all seasons before jumping into the seasonal chapters. The recipes are inspired by the seasons of Appalachia, an area with very distinct growing seasons and that has lots of lovely local produce. The recipes range from the familiar and comfortable Carrot Cupcakes with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting to the more exotic, such as the Candied Kumuat and Coconut Cake, so there really is something for everyone and every occasion. There seems to be a recipe for every type of produce that you might bring home – and that actually makes it very easy to use the book after a shopping trip!
The recipes are clearly written and very detailed, making both simple and more complex recipe very accessible. There are lots of gorgeous photos throughout the book, showcasing both the finished recipes and the produce that went into them. It’s a fun book to flip through and a good place to find inspiration before you hit the market, especially if you reference those introductory tips about picking your ingredients before heading out to shop.