All about cookbooks

I have a friend named Ree, and she has a brand new cookbook. I know that almost everyone already knows and loves her, but after meeting and hanging out with her husband Marlboro Man and two of their kids in the Dominican Republic, I feel a special fondness for her.  Ladd is the real deal, a genuinely nice guy, and their kids are sweet, polite and loads of fun. That doesn’t happen by accident.

This summer Ree further endeared herself to me by emailing me, excited about my cookbook, and telling me she’d bought a copy. I was in the process of sending out review copies to various bloggers, and would have given her a copy for free. But she beat me to it. Bless the woman. I’m waiting for my copy of her book to arrive, but if it is anything like her blog, it will be great.  She’s currently blogging about her book tour, so check it out!

Speaking of cookbooks, mine is at now, as well as Amazon, Borders, and CBD. If you want to buy it the old-fashioned way– ie, walk into an actual store and come out with a book in your hands –your best bet is Barnes and Noble.  (You can enter your zip code on the website to make sure it is in stock at a store near you.)

And if you’ve already read FAMILY FEASTS, would you consider leaving a review at  I think when a person writes a book, they pour a little of their soul into it.  Feedback is treasured, and I am truly grateful when people take time to weigh in.


  1. Wow! So many cookbooks! I have just started experimenting a little more in the kitchen and am loving all the blogs that I am finding! I have to tell you I tried your Chicken Enchilada Bake and it has now become a family fav.! I even have one in the freezer! Thanks for the time you take to put things out there!

  2. Just left a review on Amazon, I love your cookbook! The most recent recipe I tried on my crew was the Mexican Bow-Ties w/Chicken and I replaced the salsa w/taco sauce ’cause some of my picky eaters don’t like “chunks”…it was a big hit. Thanks Mary!

  3. Is that your recipe for Chicken Enchilada Bake on The Pioneer Woman’s website today?

  4. If my husband buys it for Christmas for me I’ll review it on Amazon for you.

  5. I just got your recipe book in the mail on Thursday. Have cooked several things from it already (With modifications according to what we had or what is available in Australia) including Spinach-Cheddar Quiche last night, and a few more meals to come this week from it. Will post a review once I’ve tried some more 🙂

  6. kate in ny says:

    Well I’ve already left my review on Amazon, but I wanted to say again that this cookbook is just so incredibly wonderful – I am a decent enough cook, but literally EVERY recipe I make from it makes me seem like a domestic goddess! My kids even ask now when I make a particularly good meal – “is this from the Owlhaven cookbook?”

    Just today I was looking at a bowl of past-their-prime organic pears, and a hunk of perfectly good (but slightly hardened) cheddar, and I was reluctant to throw them out, so I checked Mary’s cookbook to see if I could get some ideas. Sure enough, we just feasted on pear and cheddar pie (for dinner, actually – it was one of those days, and I figured – cheddar= protein, so that counts for dinner!) The cookbook is just like that . . . it gives you so many wonderful ideas, and I usually have most of what I need right in the pantry!

    As I said on Amazon, ***** (that’s 5 stars!)

  7. I made the Thai wraps tonight. They were awesome. I used bulk chicken sausage that I had in the freezer and it was still really amazing. My 19 month old loved the filling. He kept signing for more.

    Thank you for encouraging me to cook and for showing me how to save money, serve my family good food and have fun doing both.

    I also gave your book 5 stars on Amazon. I plan on buying several for gifts.


  8. I just saw your cookbook recommended twice in the last few days on the website’s frugality and finances forum ( If you search for “Owlhaven” I think they both come up.

  9. I put this on my To Do list because I LOVE your cookbook! I also love Ree’s – I just made her twice baked potatoes and I’m thinking the next time I make your Hearty Meatloaf (which I LOVE LOVE LOVE) I will make her potatoes again as they are a great combo! YUM! I have many more pages of your cookbook ear marked and will continue to use it. Last week I made the chicken pot pie with cheesy biscuits which my hubby loved. You’ve also shared so many great cost saving tips – I now really look at the sale prices of beef and chicken and know what is a deal and what isn’t. And I’ve gone back to frozen oj cans – such a small change but saves me a bundle and I can’t tell the difference.

  10. i haven’t read the cookbook yet…i admit i’m usually ‘serial’ about checking them out from the library before buying…so i put it on hold…and i’ve been waiting over 2 months so far!!! it’s apparently popular here in bellingham. 🙂 so far all the books i’ve had to wait for have turned out to be keepers.

  11. Just received Family Feasts today in the mail and can’t put it down! Mary, you mention making your own chili from dried beans, but I don’t see the recipe in the book. I would love a good recipe for from-scratch chili. Do you have the recipe on your blog?

  12. Hi Martha,

    Page 74-75 talks about cooking times for various beans and gives a simple recipe.

    So glad you like the book!


  13. I just order your book this week (and Ree’s). When I get a chance to try a few recipes, I’ll make a point of leaving a review. It would be tough to write a book that you love and then not hear any response back. I’m sure I’ll love it!

  14. The book just came in! I’ve been reading through it, because I usually use cookbooks as inspiration rather than for exact recipes. I’ve loved the first four chapters.

    And I’m so glad that you don’t shop cheaply through the use of coupons. I’m just not organized enough to do that and the US treats coupons differently than Canada does, it seems (no double-couponing here, or accepting competitor coupons).

    I’m also glad that you use your own canned and frozedn goods in the recipes. Most cookbooks use only fresh ingredients (or branded cans) and it doesn’t always convert well because of the salt or other additions in canned goods from the store.

    I’ll be sure to write a review once I actually try a recipe. They do look good.