Kelsey Banfield, author of The Naptime Chef, and the blog of the same name, brings us The Family Calendar Cookbook to be released this month. Here she guides us through the demanding food schedules of family life which extend way beyond the family meal. When her daughter started pre-school a few years ago, this seasoned home cook had no idea how just how much of her time would be spent in the kitchen.
Every mother knows that the hours spent cooking in the kitchen are not limited to breakfast, lunch dinner and the occasional snack. While it may seem that the majority of our lives are indeed spent here – school-aged children gather around the table to do homework, art and crafts, or simply to hang out.
Friends are invited over for morning coffee, lunch or an afternoon tea and no matter how often we try to steer our guests out of the area when we entertain, the kitchen will forever remain the gathering spot.
But the kitchen is a great deal more; once children come into the picture it seems that our time spent cooking and prepping never really comes to an end. Beyond our family meals we find ourselves responsible for class snacks – many of which need to be nut, dairy, or wheat free – bake sales, Birthday and other seasonal parties, neighborhood block parties, Super Bowl parties, book clubs, not to mention holidays, and family get-togethers we become responsible for. This, according to Banfield, is the stuff of family life.
Sometimes the hardest part of deciding what to bring to an event is the decision-making. I know there have been many times I’ve found myself scrambling for an idea of what to bring – sometimes coming up with an idea takes longer than the cooking. The Family Calendar takes the guesswork out of finding the perfect recipe for everything from family meals, to teacher appreciation luncheons, to potluck dinners, ideas for lunchboxes, cookie-swaps, graduation parties and more.
In addition to a vast variety of recipes that range from Bloody Marys for Father’s Day to Apple-Braised Pork Shoulder to Grilled Shrimp Tacos to Turtle S’mores, Banfield includes seasonal, family-friendly crafting and gardening projects which makes The Family Calendar so much more than a cookbook – more than a guide. It’s a total kitchen playbook to ensure that every food related event you’ve committed to is covered with delicious and foolproof recipes.
The Family Calendar is the type of cookbook that belongs in every family’s cookbook collection. It will be the one that’s pulled out regularly, that’s marked up and dog-eared and perhaps even a little bit stained. It’s the book people will turn to when they need a reliable recipe in a pinch. The Family Calendar Cookbook will be available through Amazon or wherever books are sold…. Mother’s Day is just around the corner!
In addition to her two cookbooks, Banfield can be found over at The Kitchn, Foodily, HuffPost, Parents, Food52, bon appetit and Martha Stewart. She has appeared on The Today Show and on The Meredith Vieira Show. She currently resides in Fairfield, Connecticut with her husband and two children. For more of her recipes as well as tips on entertaining and travel, visit her blog, The Naptime Chef.