Celebrating Asian and Pacific Heritage Month

eBooks— May is Asian and Pacific Heritage Month and to celebrate, I have goodies!

Cover image for Oceanic

In these strange and uncertain times, there is no shortage emotions of what we feel from one day to the next. Reconnecting with life outside of our self and our devices to the natural world is now a driving need. Oceanic by Aimee Nezhukumatathil¬† is a collection of free and formal poems that appeal to our different moods especially, as we vigorously seek to fulfill a desire for connectedness. She uses simple, but alluring imagery, observing life’s details.

TheseCover image for Go Home! times have also set off waves of of anti-Asian xenophobia, discrimination and violence amid cities and communities where generations of Americans have long held jobs, businesses and homes. Go Home! is a anthology featuring fiction, memoir and poetry from a diverse group of Asian writers who explore what home is and what it means in the 21st century. This dynamic work meaningfully and poignantly reflects how we identify ourselves in the world and at home.

Oceanic and Go Home are available on Hoopla.

Sweet Home Cafe Cookbook by Albert G. Lukas and Jessica B. Harris

Cover image for Sweet Home Cafe cookbook : a celebration of African American cookingBook – Not all cookbooks are created equal. The Sweet Home Cafe Cookbook is published by the Smithsonian Institution, so you will be educated as you cook. Cooking and becoming smarter go hand-in-hand! Most of the recipes are accompanied by a beautiful color photo and are elegant enough for the seasoned chef, but are also reader-friendly: easy to follow, concise, and do not scare off cooking newbies.

Recipes from the cafe fall under three categories: classic, regional, and modern. And in each corner of the page, we are unobtrusively informed of what area or region, such as the Agricultural South, the food originated from. Black and white photographic images of subjects ranging from the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee at a restaurant in Georgia, to a full-service vendor standing in front of his sign serving Po-Boy fruit and the ‘Best’ shoe shine in New Orleans, or an owner and a patron in his barbecue joint in Harlem, enriches readers and/or would-be cooks of the Black Diaspora.

One of my favorite characteristics of this cookbook is how recipes call for a “pinch” of this or that. My favorite recipes? Fried Green Tomatoes, Grilled Snapper with Creole sauce, and Son-of-A-Gun Stew. For the health-conscious, try recipes for: Baby Kale Salad; Collard, Tomato & Cashew Stew; or Pan-Roasted Rainbow Trout. Bakers can’t go wrong with Bourbon Pecan Pie or Fried Apple Hand Pies. What long days (or weeks) or hot summer afternoons (or nights), couldn’t be cured by a Hibiscus & Ginger Sweet Tea, or a Sparkling Watermelon & Lemon Verbena drink?