Ripe (Weekend Reads)

It's not just because we both have the same name. It's not because she is wickedly funny. It's not because I tested recipes for her book. You should get Ripe because it is just a damn good book.

This is my favourite cookbook from this year. Cheryl Sternman Rule is a great writer. The kind of writer I want to grow up and be someday. It makes the recipes in here a joy to simply read. She is a great cook, inspiring with a simplicity in her recipes that makes them very approachable. And did I mention that she is terribly funny?

One of the best things about this cookbook is that is arranged by colour. I know! How awesome is that? Unlike the typical and trendy seasonal arrangement, you can literally read and cook through the rainbow. This appeals to the quilter in me, obviously, but it also appeals to the Mama in me. My kids flip through it looking for something in a specific colour, just because they want to eat that colour. This is a far more appealing way to get kids interested in vegetables than by making goofy faces on their plates.

I was able to test a few recipes for Cheryl and they've easily become part of my regular repertoire, like the Smashed Cherries with Amaretti and Ricotta. I leave out the cookies and toss in more almonds and I have breakfast. Or dinner in the summer when it is too hot to cook. I've also made a dozen more recipes since getting the book. You need to try the Grapefruit Honey Sorbet. Seriously, this book is worth it just for that recipe.

I'd love to share a recipe from the book with you, but there is no way an adaptation can capture the humour and spirit that come with each entry. You just need to fill a bowl with something yummy, settle in for a good laugh and a growing appetite.