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eCookbook Reviews: Cooking in Quarantine

I have always enjoyed cooking, and since we are all staying home a little more these days, it’s given us an opportunity to explore that hobby a little more. You’ve probably seen the increase in cooking on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter- all the socials. People are baking bread for the first time or showing off meals that they’ve made with ingredients in their pantry. Cooking is fun and I’m glad we’re all starting to do it more.

I decided to check out some cookbooks on READS and try some new recipes out. My first choice in cookbook was Edwardian Cooking: 80 Recipes Inspired by Downton Abbey’s Elegant Meals by Larry Edwards.

Cover image for Edwardian Cooking

This cookbook was much better than I expected it to be. Usually I am not a fan of themed cookbooks, because the recipes are typically lacking in number and quality. That is not the case here. There are a plethora of (80!) very good recipes with simple ingredients that truly sound delicious. 

The recipe that I decided to try was Abbey Country Wheat Bread. “The Protocol of the abbeys was: If you serve a soup, you must serve a bread. Because all dinners at the abbeys consisted of three courses, with one being soup, bread was a paramount dish” – Larry Edwards. I love bread. I love kneading bread. I love smelling bread. Even more than that, I love eating bread (with butter). This bread was good bread, but it is important to knead the bread for an extended period of time due to the wheat flour- it needs more kneads. It’s worth the extra effort, because this bread is tasty!

The next cookbook I decided to virtually crack open was Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin.

Title details for Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin - Wait list

I don’t know about you, but I never feel like I have enough to time to all the things I need to do. So when I see the words “quick” and “recipe” together in the same title, my attention is sparked. I really thought this cookbook was great and I’m honestly considering buying it for myself after I return it to the library. The things I liked most about it were that the recipes had real, whole food ingredients, the ingredient lists were all short and easy to find, most of the recipes really were quick, and the one I made was tasty!

The recipe I chose was Penne with Spinach and Chickpeas in Garlic Sauce. It was simple and tasty, and I felt like it was pretty healthy. I used wheat pasta instead of regular penne pasta and it didn’t affect the flavor for me. I love garlic and the garlic is strong in this one! It’s also filling and sticks with you, which satisfies a complaint most people have about vegetarian recipes. If you don’t want to make it a whole meal, it would also be good as a side dish in a small amount. 

My final choice in cookbook was One-Dish Vegetarian Meals by Robin Robertson.

Title details for One-Dish Vegetarian Meals by Robin Robertson - Available

To be completely honest, this cookbook wasn’t my favorite, but the recipe I made was yummy, which is really what counts. My complaint is that many of its recipes suffer from what many vegetarian recipes do: long ingredient lists, hard to find ingredients, and unnecessary substitutes. But, like I said, the recipe was tasty and that’s really what counts. 

The recipe I chose to go with was Turkish-Style Stuffed Eggplant with Walnut Sauce. It had 14 ingredients (and if you want to include the salt and pepper, then 16 ingredients), which is more than I usually use to be honest, but they all worked really well together. The dish was flavorful and satisfying. It took me about 25 minutes of prep time and about 40 minutes to cook everything. 

I feel the title of this book might be a little unintentionally deceptive. I thought based on the title of the book, there would be a lot more one-pot meals that you just throw the ingredients in one pot and cook, but they are more involved than that. That can be nice for developing dynamic flavors and falls in line with traditional cooking, but I just thought I would let you know because it may require you to dirty up quite a few dishes in the cooking process. You will be cooking in the skillet and on the oven and using a food processor for many recipes. There’s more than one pan involved in the production of these meals, but the flavor and end result definitely is worth the time you put into them.

I hope you’ll consider checking on an eCookbook in quarantine and giving it a shot! Many of them are surprisingly easy to navigate. I know it’s easy to just Google a recipe, but it’s nice to just browse a cookbook when you don’t know what you’re in the mood for and you may stumble across a new gem that is likely to become a staple in your house. 

Happy cooking,

Ashleigh

Tennessee Public Libraries Continue to Serve Despite Building Closures

Social COVID-19 TN LIBRARIES RESPONDING_P4-02 (003)NASHVILLE, Tenn.– Despite restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many public libraries continue to serve their communities and in partnership with the Tennessee State Library and Archives, are offering several online resources for learning at home, research and entertainment.

“Local libraries provide vital services to their communities,” said Secretary of State Tre Hargett. “Thanks to the Tennessee State Library and Archives expansive online resources and the spark of imagination, librarians across the state have found innovative ways to still serve their communities.”

Through curbside pickup services, some libraries are still loaning out books and materials after sanitizing them following CDC guidelines and letting them sit at least 24 hours before lending them again.

In Maryville, children can attend story time with songs and a simple craft project via Facebook Live. The library in White Pine has a cart outside with free puzzles, paperback books and some cleaning supplies available to community members.

While in Pigeon Forge, people who need to file for unemployment can visit the library, don a mask, and enter the library a few at a time to use the computers. Librarians, also wearing a mask and gloves, assist if needed.

Many libraries are still offering free wi-fi. Patrons can access the internet on their smartphone, laptop, or tablet from the safety of their car in the library parking lot. Libraries are also waiving overdue fines for anyone unable to return books and materials.

“Libraries are anchor institutions. In times like these, when the seas of life are rough, we need our anchors,” said State Librarian and Archivist Chuck Sherrill. “Librarians are talented public servants who use their skills to meet community needs. It’s amazing to see their dedication and creativity during this public health crisis.”

Libraries across the state continue to provide online resources around the clock as well. The Tennessee Electronic Library (TEL) gives Tennessee residents access to over 400,000 magazines, journals, newspapers, essays, e-books, podcasts, videos, homework help and more. Tennessee R.E.A.D.S. offers more than 100,000 digital e-books, audiobooks, and videos to patrons of regional libraries for free. The TumbleBook Library provides a collection of animated talking picture books, read-along books, e-books, quizzes, puzzles, lesson plans, and educational games for children.

For more information on the resources provided by the Tennessee State Library and Archives visit http://www.sos.tn.gov/tsla. To find out what services the Williamson County Public Library System is currently offering call, visit our Williamson County Public Library System Website or Facebook page.

Williamson County and Local Municipalities launch Crisis Text Helpline

Crisis Text Line 741-741 During this time of quarantine, if you are feeling anxious, stressed, depre

It’s okay to reach out for help when you need it. Through the partnership of our municipalities and partners ,we wanted to provide residents with a resource to receive virtual mental health assistance. Simply text “Williamson” to 741741 to reach a crisis counselor.

Stuck at Home? Here’s Free Online Media to Binge from the Library

By Amy Shropshire

 

While the Williamson County Public Library is currently closed to the public, fighting off the spread of COVID-19, several changes have been made to the existing library policy.

  • We are no longer circulating physical materials. Patrons will no longer be able to place or pick up holds. Holds that have already been placed will be held for when we re-open and not expire.
  • No late fees will be assessed for materials currently checked out. Materials are still currently returnable through the book drop, but keeping them will not incur any fees until after we re-open to the public.
  • Patrons with recently expired cards, or cards expiring soon, have all been renewed until June 2020.
  • Fines will no longer be an impediment to accessing online resources. All patrons with an active and renewed library card should be able to access online materials such as Tennessee READS and Hoopla.
  • At present, staff will return calls and emails for patrons having technical difficulty accessing online resources and/or help answer queries.

So many people at home will need resources for both education and entertainment value, and we can still provide these resources through online media.

Here are some important things to remember when creating an account through our online resources.

  • We are part of Buffalo River Regional Library, so that will be the name you search for when creating an account.
  • The default PIN number is the last 4 digits of the library card number.
  • All library card numbers must be entered with no spaces to access online resources.

For example, Tennessee READS is a great online resource that offers over 100,000 e-books and audiobooks available to our patrons. You can download e-books and audiobooks to a computer, mobile device, and/or tablet. You can access Tennessee READS by downloading the apps, Overdrive and Libby, or you can access it through the library website.

 

 

Hoopla is another great resource if you are looking for more audio-visual media such as music, movies, and television shows. Not to mention Hoopla also has a comic book selection as well. Just remember to select carefully, because Hoopla is limited to 3 checkouts per month.

Another perk about Overdrive, Libby, and Hoopla are the accessibility features, which include:

  • dyslexic font
  • adjustable font size
  • adjustable audio speed
  • Hoopla has closed captioning

RBDigital also carries a variety of popular e-books and audiobooks if you can’t find something in Tennessee READS or if you run out of checkouts.

If you are looking for magazines, try Flipster! Flipster is an easy-to-use digital magazine newsstand that has new and back issues. Flipster is accessible via a web browser or the Flipster app which is made specifically for Apple devices, Android devices, and the Kindle Fire tablet. You can also download magazines to read offline, anytime, anywhere.

For something new and different, try the curated lists of the Indie Author Project. Published by Library Journal, the India Author Project pulls together lists by genre of the most talked about independently published work that often escapes notice. You might find your new favorite author there.

Whether you’re keeping up with your educational goals of if you’re wanting to learn something new, EBSCOhost is the online resource for you. EBSCOhost provides a plethora of materials from classics to educational nonfiction. Try our collection of EBSCOhost e-books and audiobooks available for checkout.

Speaking of educational resources, we have computer practice resources and databases full of new learning opportunities you can spend your time on. For example, GCFLearnFree has plenty of tutorials including basic money management, resume writing, computer skills, and technology help to name a few. GCFLearnFree also provides courses on communication skills and the sharing economy too. Feel free to browse their collection of tutorials as well as our other computer training options.

Staying at home is also a great time to finally publish that book you’ve always wanted to write, and we have the resources for that! Create your own independently published book through Pressbooks, and submit your work to the Indie Author Project, both of which make your work shareable.

While some of us may be stuck at home for public safety, this is the perfect opportunity to do the things you’ve never had time to do before. So stay home and read, learn, and create!

 

Additional Links:

Overdrive app for Android devices

Overdrive app for Apple devices

Libby app for Android devices

Libby app for Apple devices

 

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