I choose a great book to review from the Catholic Company. I kept seeing this book in magazines, websites and really wanted to buy it, but I never did. Then I saw it as an option to review. Saints at the Dinner Table by Amy Heyd combines learning with cooking, eating and entertaining. It is a wonderful book to read and the recipes are outstanding. There are twelve different saints in the book and a meal for each one. Amy tells us about each saint and then gives a reflection on why she choose the saint and/or why the saint is important to her. The saints range from the ever popular and well known St. Joseph to St. Josephine Bakhita who is a new saint to me. Amy presents an "inspired menu" for each saint. The menus include entree, vegetable, and dessert at a minimum. Dinner topic questions and a meal prayer are also included.
I choose a dish from St. Isidore of Spain, Manor House Chicken. The recipe was easy to follow, timing was on target, and most importantly, everyone loved it. So much so, it will be the main dish at a dinner party we auctioned off at our live auction in October. One of the couples there had tasted another dish I was thinking about using for the dinner and hands down, this one came out the favorite. I'll not leave you in suspense. It is a chicken and chorizo sausage dish with onions, artichoke hearts, and baby bella mushrooms.
I love to cook and entertain, so this book will be getting much more use. But the dishes are not just for company, most are quick and easy enough for every day. Some of the other dishes include: St. Margaret's Charity Meatball Soup, Poor Clare Beans, and German Black Forest Ice Cream Sandwiches. I'll be baking Hildegard's Joyful Cookies for Christmas.
This book would be a great gift for new and experienced cooks and I think would be great for a family with children to learn about some of our great saints. If you've finished your Christmas shopping, it would be nice to give to someone entering the Church at Easter.