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Make the bread, buy the book

Judge a book by its cover and you’re likely to dismiss Jennifer Reese’s Make the Bread, Buy the Butter: The Tipsy Baker’s Guide to the Best Homemade Foods as another collection of recipes you’ll never use—unless you’re the type who actually wants to make camembert cheese and potato chips at home. But even those content to buy Worcestershire sauce rather than make their own will find much to love in this very funny food memoir. After losing her job at Entertainment Weekly, Reese examines the economics of her pantry, looking for the sweet spot between buying and DIY. Not one for half measures, she’s soon overseeing a backyard farm of chickens and ducks and curing prosciutto in her kitchen. At one point she brings home a dwarf goat, outfits it with a diaper, and lets it sleep in the bed with her son. In the end, Reese may convince you to make your own vinegar, but not until you’ve read every word of her terrific book.