March 19, 2014

Book Review: Homestead Cooking with Carol

Homestead Cooking with Carol: Bountiful Make Ahead Meals
by Carol J. Alexander

No matter what the time of year, I've often been so tired at the end of a busy day that even thinking about making dinner was exhausting. After a day of gardening or canning, I'm too tired to prepare a meal of the foods I've worked so hard to produce.

Carol Alexander has the answer. A homesteader, homemaker, homeschooler, and writer, Carol has been in that same situation and has come up with an answer which she calls "homestead cooking". By planning her meals when she harvests her food and cans or freezes it, Carol can get a meal on the table in practically no time at the end of a busy day.

Whether you grow your own food or buy from local farms and farmers markets, Carol shows you how to think ahead. Although the book contains recipes, it's so much more than a recipe book. It's a way of thinking and planning, and through it all Carol inspires you to prepare healthy meals from healthy foods. Her down-to-earth advice includes making breads and desserts, pressure canning, and how to stretch a ham over many meals. She even divulges the secret to cleaning chicken feet so you can make delicious bone broth.

Carol graciously answered a few questions for me about how and why she began to cook this way:

1. What is the difference between cooking and homestead cooking?
Homestead cooking involves several things that non-homestead homemakers never encounter. For the most part, homesteaders grow a good portion of their own food. Because of that, they deal with incredible quantities of food. The non-homestead cook goes to the store each week and gets her stew meat cut up for her, her hamburger already ground, her cereal in a cardboard box. The homestead cook raises her beef, butchers it, and then cuts up a year's worth of stew meat and grinds a year's worth of hamburger. She may or may not grow her own grain to make her own cereal. But if she doesn't she probably doesn't eat cold cereal out of a box for breakfast, either. ;)

2. What inspired you to begin cooking this way?
Before I was married, a friend and I attended a natural food seminar. We baked a lot of bricks after that, but it also inspired me to eat healthier. My grandmother instilled a love for gardening in me when I was a small child. And touring poultry houses and poultry plants is enough to convince anyone to raise their own meat birds.

3. What is your favorite recipe in the book? (Mine is Chicken Spaghetti, by the way.)
Power Patties. It is such a resourceful way of using those zucchini the neighbors are leaving in your car at church each week. Plus, I love the story about my picky-eater and how we got him to eat with Power Patties.

I really enjoyed this ebook and will refer to it over and over again. I love Carol's style of menu planning and preparing for future meals, and I recommend her ebook to any homesteading homemaker, whether you live on 100 acres or in an urban area. 

I'll be giving away a copy of Carol's ebook tomorrow at the Homestead Hop, so please come back and enter. You can also order Homestead Cooking with Carol: Bountiful Make-ahead Meals at

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase a product from my affiliate link, I may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price you pay. Any commission I might receive goes straight to my feed store, my vet, and my farrier. (They thank you for your support!) I received a free copy of Carol's ebook to review, but the opinion in this post is my own.

Carol lives in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia with her husband, four of their six children, and the usual homestead critters. When not writing, you can find her in the garden wishing for things to grow or in the kitchen putting up her bounty.

To learn more about Carol’s writing and her Lessons from the Homestead series, visit her website,


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  1. Thank you, so much, for being a part of my blog tour, Kathi, and for your kind words about Homestead Cooking.

  2. Thank you for the opportunity to review your book, Carol!


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