There are few joys in life greater than partaking in delicious preserved meats — and it's with that pleasure in mind that we present to you In The Charcuterie: The Fatted Calf's Guide to Making Sausage, Salumi, Pates, Roasts, Confits, and Other Meaty Goods ($24). With 125 recipes for preparing meats, brought to you by the proprietors of San Francisco's legendary charcuterie, The Fatted Calf, you'll be able to make some of your favorites (and probably some things you've never heard of) right in your own home kitchen. They'll walk you through everything from preparing your kitchen, to selecting the right cuts, to the basics of butchering, to salting, curing, bringing, stuffing, and much more.
If a title like Pickles, Pigs & Whiskey: Recipes from My Three Favorite Food Groups and Then Some ($24) doesn't get you a little bit worked up, we don't want to hear about it. This book presents 130 recipes for bold, Southern flavors broken down by cooking technique — with everything from slathering to smoking — accompanied by gorgeous photography and musical pairings downloadable on Spotify. Recipes range from pickled sweet potatoes to deep South ramen with a fried poached egg, and build on each other to tell the documentary-style story of Southern cuisine's influence on American eating.
With the proliferation of fine craft beers in your local watering holes, it's become a great time to drink good brew — no more swilling watery, flavorless domestics. But, just because it's craft, doesn't mean it's good. The Complete Beer Course: Boot Camp for Beer Geeks: From Novice to Expert in Twelve Tasting Classes ($15) will give you the knowledge to intelligently discuss, and the confidence to selectively discern, the good and the bad. This book breaks it down into a series of reader-friendly courses, helping you understand the process, ingredients, and subtle flavors that make for a tasty beer. By the end you'll be able to casually chat about the hop varieties in your favorite IPA, or pass on that pedestrian pilsner.
Build a terrifying, albeit miniature, arsenal to defend your small space with Mini Weapons of Mass Destruction ($13 each). This series of books includes detailed instructions for building tiny weapons that fit perfectly on your desk or in your cubicle, all made with commonly-found office supplies and household items. While calling them weapons of mass destruction may be a bit hyperbolic, they'll certainly provide plenty of entertainment on a shrunken scale. Each book contains more than 30 weapons, ranging from trebuchets and catapults to blowguns and crossbows. Also included are strategic guidelines, clear diagrams, and safety tips (you could put an eye out with that).