"More with Less" and "Extending the Table" Cookbooks

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on August 22, 2008

My absolute favorite cookbook is “More with Less” by Doris Janzen Longacre.

This cookbook emphasizes the importance of simplifying. Getting back to the basic ingredients. To therefore get more food with less ingredients.

In the US, we waste so much food. While much of the world goes starving. I lived for 6 years in a third world country. Although the starvation was not evident in the mountain town where we resided, it was evident in the poorer regions of the island. Most of the people went into debt just to have rice and beans to cook. And maybe a vegetable and some meat/chicken.

While living overseas, I was forced to learn how to “cook from scratch” and make well rounded meals. Meals with color and texture varieties. Meals that were balanced and nutritious. Meals that made more with less.

The “sister” cookbook to “More with Less” is titled “Extending the Table: A World Community Cookbook.” From the foreward (pg 7), “Food is a medium of comunication, but it is more; in a mysterious way, it is part of the message, as Jesus so vividly portrayed in the breaking of bread and distribution of the cup. Extending the Table presents recipes and stories of people from around the world. Many of them live with few material resources, yet they share gifts which point us toward a different and freer way of life.”

There is great simplicity to be found in basic cooking. Simplicity in this chaotic life is hard to come by, but I long for it. One way I can help simplify my life is through my cooking!

I highly recommend these cookbooks. One meal a week, then two meals a week, and so on…little by little you too can cook “more with less”!

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Noodle August 24, 2008 at 10:46 pm

I *love* this cookbook! I also use The Settlement Cookbook often.

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Leeser August 25, 2008 at 11:05 am

I agree! My mom gave me “More with Less” shortly after we got married. I forgot that I had it until recently and love it! It has become one of my favorites.

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Sandi August 25, 2008 at 6:48 pm

More With Less is one of my favorites, too! I used it a lot while overseas, too (in West Africa) — where were you?

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Betsy August 26, 2008 at 1:57 pm

I love this cookbook, too! It’s been a great source of easy kid-friendly dishes, too–simple, healthy food they enjoy eating.

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Martha A. August 28, 2008 at 1:23 pm

My favorite too! We have alot in common!

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tesslouise October 25, 2008 at 10:50 pm

I know this is an old post…

There’s now a third cookbook, Simply in Season. It’s arranged by season and very appealing.

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Paula November 3, 2008 at 1:55 pm

I would LOVE to know what recipes are your favorite. I have had this cookbook forever and have looked through it, but in my mind the recipes just don’t look tasty. But I keep hearing RAVE reviews. SO I thought if I could a hold of a week’s worth of tried and true and well loved (you can just say the title of the recipe, page number would also be nice if you know it). Thanks so much!!

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LucyDelRey December 21, 2008 at 6:08 pm

My favorite recipes: honey baked lentils (halve the amount for a small family, I used ground beef instead of bacon), pizza rice casserole (yum!!), Hawaiian chicken wings.
I love your blog!!!!

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Jenn December 26, 2008 at 1:27 pm

My mom used to have this cookbook when I was growing up, and I loved its mix of ethnic cooking. Thanks for the reminder about it – I’ll have to give it another look now that I’m the head cook!

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