The Silver Palate Cookbook Is Our February Cookbook Club Pick

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Take a look at the cookbook collection of anyone on staff at Bon Appétit, and there’s a good chance a copy of The Silver Palate Cookbook is there. And if it’s not on their shelf, it’s definitely on their mother’s shelf, or their mother’s shelf. Ring a bell? How about Chicken Marbella? If you’ve ever had the famed olive and prune dish, then you know what we’re talking about.

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Co-authored by Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso, the first edition of the unassuming soft-cover cookbook debuted in 1982 and introduced American home cooks to simple, approachable, super flavorful dishes that drew on a global palate, while remaining familiar and accessible. It was an immediate hit. Sure the approach sounds like a given today, but Silver Palate was ahead of its time; almost 40 years later, it hasn’t lost an ounce of its relevance.

As winter only continues to get worse (when did polar vortex become a regularly recurring season?) we’re using our monthly Cookbook Club as a chance to turn back to comforting classics while we wait for bright green things (ramps! Peas!) to return to the market. And if we’re going to use February as an excuse to get nostalgic, then there’s no better place to start than the Silver Palate.

silver palate cookbook club

Photo by Chelsie Craig

Everyone at BA has their favorite recipe from the book, but for me, it’s all about the sour cream coffee cake: the single most important thing I eat all year. It all goes down on Christmas morning (and only on Christmas morning!) as an accompaniment to my family’s very over-the-top gift-giving ritual. Not one of us can recall when or why this tradition began, but I do know that it’s not time to rip apart some shiny paper if the scent of this impossibly moist, perfectly sweet pecan-studded cake isn’t already wafting through the house.

So take my word for it, grab some friends, and join us in honoring this timeless classic at your own Cookbook Club this month. Just be sure that coffeecake makes an appearance at the table. You can be very certain I’ll be bringing it to ours.

Get the recipe:

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Pick up a copy of The Silver Palate Cookbook wherever you buy cookbooks. And if you want to learn more about the BA Cookbook Club and how to start your own club, you’ll find all that right here.

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Your February Horoscope Is—How Convenient—DIPS!

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Happy b-day, Aqua! You hate surprises, but pssst, you can expect ‘em this month. A surprise party? A speeding ticket? A pie to the face? That surprise might also be a quick-on-your-toes decision you need to make toward the middle of the month. Yes, you prefer to take your time weighing out big decisions, but watch yourself be amazed at your ability to trust your gut. You’re on the cusp of some big life changes this month, bringing a much-needed sense of renewal. Since it’s your birthday, you deserve miso-tofu ranch dip—creamy, herbal, and nostalgic, this healthy dip pairs perfectly with veggies, pretzels, or bagel chips—you name it, boss! No doubt, you’ll be as intrigued with this one as we are.

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Liberals confirm they’re running against Singh as byelections planned for February

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NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh will get his chance to enter Parliament in February, when the Liberal government holds byelections to fill the three remaining vacancies in the House of Commons, CBC News has confirmed.

The Liberals recently called a byelection in the Ontario riding of Leeds–Grenville–Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes for Dec. 3, leaving vacancies in three other ridings unfilled. That move was met with a chorus of criticism from the Conservatives, New Democrats, Bloc Québécois and Greens, who demanded that votes also be called to fill the vacancies in the ridings of Outremont, York–Simcoe and Burnaby South.

As first reported by The Hill Times and confirmed to CBC News by a Liberal source, the Liberals intend to call the byelections early in the new year, with the date to be set for some point in February.

Singh announced he would be the NDP’s candidate in Burnaby South in early August, before former NDP MP Kennedy Stewart had officially vacated the seat. Stewart announced earlier in the year that he would be resigning to mount what would turn out to be a successful bid for the mayor’s office in Vancouver. The seat has only been officially vacant since mid-September.

The NDP leader is likely to have a tough fight on his hands. While the Greens have decided they will extend the « leader’s courtesy » to Singh by not putting up a candidate against him, both the Liberals and Conservatives will contest the seat.

A recent poll by Mainstreet Research suggested the New Democrats were running third in the riding, though the poll showed a considerable number of undecideds and had a relatively high margin of error.

The Montreal riding of Outremont, vacated by former NDP leader Tom Mulcair over the summer, is also expected to be difficult for the New Democrats to hold: the Liberals are riding high in the polls in Quebec and the NDP has suffered a significant drop in support there.

The Liberals have yet to nominate a candidate in Outremont. The New Democrats have nominated Julia Sanchez to try to retain the seat for the party.

The Conservatives have nominated businessman Scot Davidson to hold the Ontario riding of York–Simcoe for the party, after the resignation of former Conservative cabinet minister Peter Van Loan in September. The riding is not expected to change colours.

The only opposition party leader that did not criticize the Liberal decision to hold off on calling the three byelections until next year was Maxime Bernier of the People’s Party of Canada. As a newly-formed party, the PPC was not eligible to run candidates in any byelection called within 60 days of his application for registration with Elections Canada in October.

Once the byelections are called and the PPC nominates candidates — as Bernier has said he will do in all three ridings — his party will fulfill the final step to become an officially registered party, allowing the PPC to award tax receipts to its donors.

By law, the Liberals have until Jan. 30 to call the byelection in Outremont. The other two contests have to be called by March.

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Jean Machine going out of business, will close all stores by February

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Canadian apparel retailer Jean Machine Clothing Inc. will close down all of its stores by the end of winter because of losses.

Jean Machine’s president Lisa Hryciuk announced in a letter posted on the company’s social media channels that 20 of its locations will be shuttered by Jan. 31 and another four will be gone by Feb. 28.

All of Jean Machine’s locations are in Ontario and it stocks apparel from Guess, Levi’s, Jack and Jones and Buffalo David Bitton.

Hryciuk says Jean Machine’s e-commerce offerings will remain open, but there will be no exchanges permitted for purchases made since Nov. 1.

Jean Machine filed for bankruptcy protection in January amid increased competition in the denim space from Uniqlo, H&M, Nordstrom and other newer retail chains.

Jean Machine has been around for 42 years and is owned by Vancouver-based Stern Partners Inc., through Comark Service Inc., which also owns apparel brands Bootlegger, Ricki’s and Cleo.

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