Aurora library cookbook to provide recipes with a touch of literary love

Aurora library cookbook to provide recipes with a touch of literary love

Entries welcome from everyone, including restaurants, with recipes to share with the community

“If you could invite three people to dinner, alive and dead, who would it be?”

We have been asked this philosophical question many times, and the answers are as unique and enlightening as the individual.

But the Aurora Public Library (APL) is now taking it a step further: What would serve you?

That’s the question APL asks local book lovers when creating The Great APL Cookbook.

“Readers and foodies often share a strong bond,” the APL says. “There are many cookbooks based on the foods that literary characters tasted in the novels they appeared in, but what would you cook for your favorite literary character if you could invite them to dinner at your home or restaurant?”

Answers to these questions from across the community will form the basis of The Great APL Literary Cookbook, an initiative inspired by Irish sci-fi writer Rohan O’Duill, a professional chef, whose Fiction to Sink Your Teeth Into column draws attention drew from Reccia Mandelcorn, APL’s manager of community collaboration.

“I thought it could be very creative,” she says of this Aurora-wide endeavor. “I also thought it would allow people to share recipes from different cultures and family favorites that were handed down. One of the recipes that Rohan mentions in the newsletter is the novel Cascade by Rachel Rosen. Rachel is a member of the APL writing group and one of her characters happens to be Tamil. What he did is post a recipe for Medu Vada which are Tamil donuts. They were inspired by his favorite character in her novel, sujay, and she is a young political intern who is also a magic-influenced person. Our community would join in, but it could be any novel. It could be Dostoevsky or something a local author wrote.

“We’ve had a really interesting partnership with the York Region Food Network, where we’ve produced three small cookbooks as part of the Culinary Traveler program. The community loved them and we had to stop that project because of COVID. So I thought something like the Great APL Literary Cookbook would fill the void of missing the Culinary Traveler.”

The library has made the appeal to everyone in the community, including restaurants, the York Region Food Network, and even local senior groups who may have a slew of recipes to share with the community.

It could be a recipe inspired by a character in a book, a character’s taste, something described on the pages of the book as eating – and you could even take a reverse approach to the project by having one of your own. identify favorite recipes and a book or character to match the fare.

“I would cook a wok dish for Linda Rui Feng, author of Swim back to Trout River, that’s our One Book One Aurora Featured Book of the year,” Mandelcorn says of her personal approach to the assignment. “I hope that because she has a lot of knowledge of that kind of cooking herself, she would appreciate my very humble effort to create a recipe based on cooking that she may have grown up with.

“We invite people to view our cookbook collection and we have a wonderful online resource called AZ World Food. It has dishes from all over the world and it’s a great opportunity to try out some recipes. When you come up with one you like, think about whether you’d like to cook that for your favorite character in a book.”

If you are interested in contributing to The Great APL Cookbook, please send your entries, along with the book cover and a mouth-watering photo of the finished dish, to Lucy Frechette at [email protected]

The deadline for submission is Friday, October 21.

Selected recipes will appear in the book — in print and online — and those whose recipes are chosen will also receive a gift certificate to a local business.

Brock Weir is a federally funded reporter for the Local Journalism Initiative, The Auroran

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