Cookbooks Photo Credit: Western Living

5 Cookbooks (Plus Recipes!) to Try This Spring

Because we can always use a little cooking inspo.

Spring has arrived (can it be true?), and we’re anticipating a ton of fresh vegetable cravings ahead. That’s why we curated a list of spring-friendly cookbooks (plus a recipe pick from each!) to compliment the warmer days—and to finally push aside the heartier dishes we’ve been forced to cook recently. Whether you’re looking for an all-Canadian recipe, a homemade fine dining experience or some simple, healthy breakfast smoothies, these West Coast darlings have got you covered.

1. Araxi: Roots to Shoots by James Walt

The menu at Araxi isn’t necessarily full of simple dishes. But Chef James Walt’s second book, though still for more experienced home cooks, does have some approachable recipes. Plus it’s chock-full of gorgeous photos and offers plenty of opportunities to cook with fresh produce. We seriously suggest digging through this one to score the perfect dinner party recipe.

Recipe Pick: Roasted Beets with Chickpea Caponata

2. Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Road Trip by Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller

Feast is the not-so-obvious outcome of Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller’s road trip across Canada. In its pages, the authors—natives of northern B.C. and Ontario, respectively—brilliantly capture the vast landscape we’re so lucky to call home. And they’ve come up with plenty of recipes that make us proud to be from Western Canada (think Sour Cherry and Ricotta Perogies from Saskatoon, Pork and Shrimp Wontons from Vancouver and Fire-Roasted Salmon from the Kyuquot Checleset First Nations community on Vancouver Island)—it’s downright stuffed with dishes to feast on. 😉

Recipe Pick: Wild Mushroom Toasts

3. The Juice Truck by Zach Berman and Ryan Slater

Not only is this cookbook full of snack and breakfast smoothies that literally take one minute to make, it’s also fun to look at and filled with hilarious commentary. Brought to you by the team behind Vancouver’s Juice Truck, this smoothie bible is great motivation for you to start the liquid cleanse you’ve been talking about. Our fave is the Hedgehog Smoothie (because it’s inspired by a Ferrero Rocher), but there’s something for everyone: health nuts, cleanse fanatics, post-workout smoothing drinkers and the like.

Recipe Pick: The Hedgehog Smoothie

4. The East Van Foodie by Brad Hill and Chris Dagenais

East Van Foodie, part of the Foodie Books collection, brings all of our favourite East Van rooms—The Acorn, The Cascade Room, Campagnolo, Jamjar, Les Amis du Fromage—together in one place. The book’s stunning photography doesn’t hurt either. Being chef-made, the recipes can be technical, but we think they’re seriously worth the effort.

Recipe Pick: Pacific White Shrimp and Coriander Gnocchi

5. Whitewater Cooks: More Beautiful Food by Shelley Adams

Shelley Adams’s cookbook is the fifth in her Nelson-based Whitewater Cooks series; the recipes are simple, varied and tasty. While the series’ first book showcased the fine food at Whitewater Ski Resort, this one is more focused on classic dishes that are guaranteed to turn home cooks into culinary superstars. We’re talkin’ Yukon Gold Potato Salad, homemade Fig Jam and Goat Cheese and Rhubarb Frangipane Tarte. (Warning: these recipes don’t go easy on the butter.)

Recipe Pick: Warm Spicy Greens with Melted Pecorino Cheese, Toasted Hazelnuts and Port Soaked Raisins

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