Delicious food combined with delicious words was a recipe for success when the Nelson Public Library partnered with the Kootenay Co-op to produce the lovely literary cookbook Seasonings.
Five years later, the library is set to create a new cookbook celebrating reading and recipes. The library is inviting Nelson restaurants to participate in Pairings: inspired food, inspiring words, a compendium of beloved recipes and books from the chefs on Nelson.
“We’re looking for Nelson chefs to contribute some of their special recipes — not regular menu items, but a recipe that might be a featured dish,” explains library staffer and cookbook producer Anne DeGrace. “And we want to know about a book that has inspired each chef, so we can celebrate the food that feeds our bellies as well as the books that feed our minds.”
Pairings designer Stephen Cretney of The Forest Design was the library’s designer for Seasonings, which was shortlisted for a Canadian Culinary Book Award. Most recently, he designed the book Humans of Nelson. And David R. Gluns — photographer for Whitewater Cooks, with work in books and magazines Canada-wide — has come on board.
The book will be modeled after the Seasonings format: full colour, 128 pages softbound, “and beautiful,” says DeGrace. “There were a number of reasons for the success of Seasonings, from the quality of the literary and culinary contributions to the overall beauty of the final product. Pairings will build on that.”
The library is looking for Nelson restaurants who consider themselves exceptional. Contributors are asked to provide up to four recipes, prepare one dish to be photographed and be available for a chef portrait, and be willing to be interviewed about a favourite book. There’s an opportunity for restaurants to purchase cookbooks for sale. Pairings will be sold not only in Nelson but also beyond through a book distribution company.
“It’s a win-win proposition,” says DeGrace. “Restaurants can celebrate their chefs and gain exposure while contributing to their local library, and Nelson folks get great recipes and a great reading list.”
The cookbook’s projected release date is November 1. Interested restaurants should contact DeGrace at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-5684 before March 6.