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The Hands-On Home: A Seasonal Guide to Cooking, Preserving & Natural Homekeeping Hardcover – September 29, 2015

4.8 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Sasquatch Books (September 29, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570619913
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570619915
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 2 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,508 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Bror Erickson VINE VOICE on September 24, 2015
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A lot of care and thought went into the production of this book from the content to the cover. Erica Strauss does everyone a favor applying what she has learned from working professional kitchens to how we can turn our dwellings into homes again, with recipes and all sorts tips for basic home care.
Her introduction to the book reads like a manifesto for urban homesteading, and brings a bit of balance and reason to what might otherwise be dismissed as "crunchy". I think that is the thing. Many today feel a disconnect and perhaps even emptiness when it comes to their style of life, with prepackaged meals, and jobs that take the home almost completely out of the equation of life, but then they don't quite want to, or perhaps can't even afford to give up their jobs, live off the grid, and off the land. This book is about not necessarily living simpler, but living fuller. It's about learning to do simple things that return a little pride to your home life, to help save you a little money here and there, and enjoy your life, while not giving up everything that drew you to live where you live now.
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Format: Hardcover
Erica Strauss has the goal of helping men and women everywhere turn their homes into centers of production instead of places of consumption. That’s a big challenge to wrestle with, but her new book The Hands-On Home: A Seasonal Guide to Cooking, Preserving & Natural Homekeeping shows you how.

Instead of dousing our bathrooms in chemicals, Erica gives step-by-step instructions for making “potty powder” and “acidic bathroom cleaner.” Instead of buying sugary jam from the grocery store, she teachers readers to can their own preserves without using pectin.

Well, Erica would have to pry the pectin box away from my cold, dead hands, but I’m willing to give her other ideas a try. So are her legions of fans who adore her well-known site: Northwest Edible Life.

Sasquatch Books in Seattle sent me a free, advanced copy of The Hands-On Home this summer in exchange for my honest opinions and review. For me as a homemaker, it was love at first sight. The construction of the book is everything I expect from Sasquatch: fine quality pages, beautiful illustrations, and a style that walks the fine line between folksy and hip. The Hands-On Home is also enormous. It’s almost 400 pages long and feels like Joy of Cooking’s younger, prettier sister.

But don’t let the girth put you off, because The Hands-On Home is divided into easy-to-manage sections by season. It’s really like five books in one. First comes the part about basic, year-round instructions. Next comes spring, summer, fall and winter. In each of the seasonal sections there are edible recipes as well as ideas for home and personal care.

Northwest Edible Life fans might be asking themselves, “Do I really need to buy this book? Can’t I find these recipes on Erica’s website?
Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Wonderful book for a newbie to the "make it yourself", homesteading lifestyle! Well organized into categories with loads of recipes for not only food but cleaning products, as well health and beauty. The book itself is impressive with a nice bookmark and a high quality feel. Definitely a reference book! Food recipes look delicious though I haven't made any yet, the cleaning recipes are fairly simple as well as the health and beauty recipes, a lot that is very similar to what you can find on the internet, and if you have been making your own for awhile probably already have. Also has great step by step pictures for pressure canning, and many other techniques! Overall, I wouldn't say this is great for a seasoned home maker who has been making their own for awhile, but a great gift for someone just starting to get into it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have been a long time reader of Erica's blog, Northwest Edible Life. I live in Seattle, so it was great to read a blog about gardening and cooking from someone in my area. I too am a former professional cook, so every recipe she ever posted was a real treat to me.

When she announced she was going to be writing a book I was super excited. I knew she would include some of the recipes from her blog, and she did, but there are a ton more in this book that are new, and sound amazing. Erica knows what she is doing and what she is talking about when it comes to cooking and preserving. As a former kitchen professional myself, I can spot a newb a mile away. Erica is for REAL. I have personally made her easy mayo three times in the last three weeks, (divine) I have made the Green Herb and Peanut Pork Meatballs (SO GOOD), and the Grilled Strip Steak with Chimichurri. Wow, chimichurri, why has it taken so long for you to come into my life?! I have also made the Lacto-Fermented Pico de Gallo, also very good, and very easy recipe.

But this book is about more than cooking, it has a ton of information and recipes for personal and home care products. I recently got "into" essential oils, and have always hated using harsh chemical cleaners. I love how Erica explained the science behind what type of cleaner you want for what mess you are cleaning, getting into the ph and acid qualities. LOVED IT. I love how it just all makes sense. I am going to be making up bottles of my own cleaners, as well as shampoo, etc. Next up will be Preserved Lemons so I can make the Moroccan Lamb dish. Heck yeah.
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