Saturday, May 17, 2014

Coffee, Bread, Organic Living … Something For Everyone’s Taste Buds

In today’s world of fast-pace living, cooking and eating sometimes takes a back seat to the day’s activities. We grab a bite where we can to keep up with what’s on the day’s agenda.

I have three varied books I want to share my thoughts on today that deal with different aspects of food in our lives. For those of you like me addicted to coffee, I have THE WORLD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF COFFEE. If you are a baker or would like to be one, BREAD ART will inspire your culinary talents. If you want to get a fresh start on living a healthier lifestyle, ORGANIC AVENUE can help.

THE WORLD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF COFFEE by Mary Banks, Christine McFadden, Catherine Atkinson

Coffee coverWhen you rush to have that first cup of coffee in the morning, have you ever wondered about the origin of coffee or how it came to be a beverage?

Authors Mary Banks, Christine McFadden and Catherine Atkinson have written a book that is a must have for coffee lovers, THE WORLD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF COFFEE: The Definitive Guide to Coffee, From Simple Bean to Irresistible Beverage.

This informative book takes coffee lovers on a fascinating journey starting with the history of coffee. It explores the myths, mysteries, and legends. It discusses customs and rituals, as well as conflicts over coffee drinking. Once in Europe coffee was deemed to be medicine and was used by doctors, herbalist, midwives and chemists during the 17th century. From there the debate began about the pros and cons of drinking coffee and how it affects a person’s health.

There is a section on brewing coffee and the idea method to achieve the perfect cup of delicious beverage. The book also tells about where coffee comes from and follows it on its path. It describes the various types of coffee beans and their properties.

The section on ‘The Art of Coffee Drinking’ is amazing and very detailed. The various methods of preparing coffee are discussed and shown in vivid color step-by-step photographs.

To top off this intriguing book are sections featuring delicious recipes including coffee as an ingredient. Each recipe is accompanied by beautiful, rich color photos showing not only the end results, but step-by-step procedures in preparing the dish.

I only discovered one drawback to this tantalizing paperback book – the print was too small for my tired eyes, but a magnifying page overcame that obstacle.

THE WORLD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF COFFEE is packed full of amazing tidbits of coffee history and information. The recipes are stunning. Anyone who truly enjoys coffee will enjoy this book.

*I found out from the publisher that the book I reviewed is a handbook reduction of an original larger book and thus the reason for the smaller print in the book I have.

The World Encyclopedia of Coffee: The Definitive Guide to Coffee, From Simple Bean to Irresistible Beverage by Mary Banks, Christine McFadden, and Catherine Atkinson, Southwater 2nd Edition, @2014, ISBN: 978-1846812453, Paperback, 264 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

BREAD ART by Stephanie Petersen

Bread Art coverRemember when you were young being told not to play with your food? Well, Chef Stephanie Petersen has turned playing with food – at least bread – into an edible art form.

Petersen’s book, BREAD ART: Braiding, Decorating and Painting Edible Bread for Beginners, is a combination cookbook and visual aid into creating beautiful pastries that are almost too beautiful to eat. The book gives the basics of making a good bread formation and general bread tips. There are also simple bread recipes, along with helpful tips on yeast adjustments.

Petersen (also known as Chef Tess Bakeresse) takes readers step-by-step through simple decorative dough embellishments. She shares techniques and demonstrates through beautiful color photographs the process of creating these amazing pastries. This attractive hardback book will provide hours of entertainment and loads of delicious treats.

One section deals with creating wonderful bread paintings using natural colors and extracts. The author explains glazes, dustings, glittering, and stenciling techniques. In addition, there is a helpful specialty product listing for those unable to find certain supplies in their local grocery store.

The stunning pastries created with this book look too good to eat, but the aroma is too tempting to resist. This is a great book for any cook’s library be they a novice baker or a professional.

Chef Peterson’s website is and her blog is

Bread Art: Braiding, Decorating and Painting Edible Bread for Beginners by Stephanie Petersen, Cedar Fort Inc., @2014, ISBN: 978-1462112951, Hardback, 192 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.


Organic Avenue coverIf you’re looking to cleanse your system and adopt a healthier lifestyle, ORGANIC AVENUE: Recipes for Life, Made With Love by Denise Mari is a great place to start.

Mari, founder of Organic Avenue, shares her remarkable juice cleansing program along with delicious and nutritious recipes. She explains how tragedy in her life inspired her to explore healthier eating and how her brand of healthy philosophy evolved. She also discusses the advantages of raw food in your diet.

Beautifully illustrated with rich color photographs, ORGANIC AVENUE takes readers on a journey to reach improved stamina, glowing skin, inner calmness, positive and mental clarity, and weight loss. Mari breaks down why readers should cleanse, how to start, what to expect during the process, and how to return to normal eating, only better.

This delightful hardback book is filled with simple and easy recipes for delicious smoothies, salads and dressings, entries, snacks, tasty sweets, and much more. To round out the healthy lifestyle, the author also shares helpful advice on living a more focused and balanced life.

The author further explains LOVE, the founding and guiding principle of Organic Avenue. She breaks it down into L – Live, O – Organic, V – Vegan, E – Experience. In addition, the author goes into great detail in the form of a FAQ to answer questions readers might have about the LOVE Cleanse.

Topping off this informative book, the author includes an extensive resource section and a listing of food and equipment sources. ORGANIC AVENUE is chalked full of helpful information, delicious recipes, and lifestyle advice to assist in reaching your goal of a healthier life.

Organic Avenue: Recipes for Life, Made With Love by Denise Mari, William Morrow Cookbooks, @2014, ISBN: 978-0062202215, Hardback, 368 Pages 

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Are you a coffee drinker? Have you ever tried your hand at decorating bread? What are your thoughts on cleansing your system and eating more organic foods?

*This post contains affiliate links.


  1. Not a coffee drinker, but we do eat a lot of organic food. And bread! Like bread.

    1. Alex, I can't image not drinking coffee. I need to eat more organic food and bread is always good.

  2. Mason - What a nice grouping of these books! There's nothing like freshly-baked bread, and honestly, I couldn't imagine life without coffee. Thanks for sharing these.

    1. Margot, I'm with you in not being able to image life without coffee. It's the one element that wakes me up in the morning and calms me for the day.

  3. I don't drink coffee but I adore encyclopaedias! The other books are perfect for me!

    1. Dez, the book on coffee is definitely an encyclopedia. I was amazed at the depth of information in the book.

  4. The coffee book would be great, but the small text has me worried. I'd have to see it first. The breads look so pretty on the cover and -- bread is so darn good!

    1. Southpaw, the type is small in the coffee book. It's a bit smaller than what you see in the usual paperback cozy mystery for example.For most it probably wouldn't be a problem. As for the bread book, the photos inside had me starving by the end of the first chapter.

  5. Coffee and warm bread. Can't get better than that first thing in the morning. The book sounds wonderful :)

    1. Wendy, you're so right - warm bread and a cup coffee definitely can't get any better than that.

  6. I love to drink coffee especially the cold coffee. There are different brand of coffee available in the market but it is good you should go for organic coffee.

    Kopi Luwak.

  7. Its a great pleasure to read your post.Its full of information, professionally written and I feel like the author has extensive knowledge.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.