The Food for Thought stage  offers festival-goers a chance to sample delicious recipes prepared  by celebrity chefs and cookbook authors in the live demo kitchen!  

Food for Thought Stage

The Baltimore Book Festival features Food Network stars, The Fabulous Beekman Boys with their cook book, 1802 Heirloom Vegetable Cookbook; Jillian Lagasse, The Gluten-Free Table; Wildly popular blogger-turned-cookbook author Jessica Merchant with her first hardcover, Seriously Delish; Food Network Star, Chloe Coscarelli, Chloe’s Vegan Italian Kitchen; and Real Housewives of New Jersey star, Kathy Wakile, with her book, Indulge.

Stage: Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, Kaufman Pavilion

Friday, September 26


Leah Eskin, Slices of Life: A Food Writer Cooks Through Many a Conundrum

Bad Haircut Kale Chips. Post-ER Roast Chicken. New Baby Risotto. Frantic Dinner-Party Calming Soup. These are some of the dishes that food writer Leah Eskin has turned out during her years of raising two children, enduring one dog, and tending her marriage. She's also nurtured her ten-year-old food column, "Home on the Range," providing a recipe and accompanying vignette in the Chicago Tribune every week. Slices of Life transforms those columns into a memoir that readers can savor in small or large bites.

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Connie Crabtree-Burritt, BOS Cooks

BOS Cooks is a collection of recipes and stories. In 2005 Baltimore Outreach Services (BOS) began a culinary job readiness program. As a chef, restaurateur, and caterer for over thirty years, Connie Crabtree-Burritt has taught many women who had natural talent but no formal training in the kitchen. Over 100 graduates later, many of these women now have the tools and experience to find employment that will allow them to provide for their families. Their recipes, tips, and stories are their way of sharing their culinary journey.

All proceeds from this cookbook will directly benefit homeless women and children.

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Melissa Goldthwaite, Books that Cook

Melissa A. Goldthwaite, co-editor of Books That Cook: The Making of a Literary Meal, discusses the pleasures and challenges of including recipes in poems. She prepares Summer Salad, a simple recipe that celebrates the freshest ingredients available in late summer. Goldthwaite also reads her poem by the same title and discuss the choices she made in writing it, including leaving out certain ingredients, showing that in writing—as in cooking—one makes choices, depending on taste, conventions, audience, and the ingredients at hand.

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American Heart Association, Go Fresh Cookbook

A 2013 graduate of Stratford University’s Culinary Management program, Chef Tia Berry manages the American Heart Association’s first-ever Simple Cooking with Heart Kitchen. Chef Berry demonstrates how to cook a heart-healthy Chicken Gumbo from the American Heart Association’s 2014 Go Fresh Cookbook.

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Jessica Merchant, Seriously Delish

Jessica Merchant is a full-time recipe developer, food writer, and blogger who is intensely passionate about food and writing, and especially sharing her food through her writing. She started the blog “How Sweet Eats” in 2009, and to date it has been read by over 150 million people. Every page in her first cookbook, Seriously Delish, is a bold declaration of love for chocolate, browned butter, and bacon.

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Happy Hour with Catherine Jones!

Catherine Jones, chef/author, of The Calories In Calories Out Cookbook will do a Cooking Demo featuring her recipes for Festive Margarita Punch to kick off happy hour, followed by Aromatic Basmati Rice, Chicken Burgers with Ricotta and Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Fresh Mint, Cilantro, and Green Chili Chutney. Join her to learn how to boil basmati rice, roast and grind Indian spices, and make a snappy green chutney that you can serve with almost anything.

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Saturday, September 27


Charlotte Galley

Charlotte Galley is the the official Chef for the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, writing a semi-weekly article for their Farmer's Market and Bazaar Newsletter, and making public appearances on their behalf. Her zest for food and balance is evident in both her cooking and lifestyle.

"Food is nourishment, pleasure, and love. It is my goal to make healthy, delicious, home cooked meals more accessible to people, and less intimidating. To give people the basic skills and knowledge to approach shopping for food, and preparing it, with knowledge, confidence, and joy. Balance, health, knowledge, sustainability, and pleasure are what I strive to practice and teach."

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Sam Fromartz, In Search of The Perfect Loaf

In 2009, journalist Samuel Fromartz was offered the assignment of a lifetime: travel to France to work in a boulangerie. So began his quest to hone not just his homemade baguette—which later beat out professional bakeries to win the “Best Baguette of D.C.”—but his knowledge of bread, from seed to table. The result is an informative yet personal account of bread and breadbaking, complete with detailed recipes, tips, and beautiful photographs.

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Rob Kasper & Boog Powell, Baltimore Baseball and Barbeque with Boog: Stories from the Orioles’ Smokey Slugger

Since he started smacking long balls for the Baltimore Orioles, John “Boog” Powell has enjoyed the gustatory delights of his adopted hometown. After hanging up his spikes, the former MVP set up his now iconic barbecue operation at Camden Yards. Baltimore author Rob Kasper takes a behind- the-scenes look at the life of this smokey slugger from his Florida boyhood through his rise to major-league glory and beyond. Told in Boog’s colorful style, this rollicking journey is spiced with recipes and topped off with interviews from former teammates like Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson and Jim Palmer.

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Jillian Lagasse, The Lagasse Girls: Big Flavor, Bold Taste and No Gluten!

When you have to give up gluten, either for yourself or a family member, you may think you have to say good-bye to all of the comforting foods you love. It's hard enough adopting a new way of eating, but the idea of giving up your favorite fried chicken, mac 'n' cheese, or oatmeal raisin cookies is downright unfair and intimidating (and if your kids are the ones diagnosed, it can be even more difficult!). It's a story Jillian Lagasse knows well.

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Emily & Melissa Elsen, The Four & Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book

Melissa and Emily Elsen, the twenty-something sisters who are proprietors of the wildly popular Brooklyn pie shop and cafe Four & Twenty Blackbirds, have put together a pie-baking book that's anything but humble. This stunning collection features more than 60 delectable pie recipes organized by season, with unique and mouthwatering creations such as Salted Caramel Apple, Green Chili Chocolate, Black Currant Lemon Chiffon, and Salty Honey.

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The Fabulous Beekman Boys, 1802 Heirloom Vegetable Cookbook

When Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Dr. Brent Ridge abandoned the big city for a goat farm, what started as a personal inquiry into natural living and reconnecting with the earth exploded into a wildly successful enterprise, Beekman 1802, named after their historic home. World-renowned for its handcrafted goat’s milk soaps and artisanal Blaak cheese, the organic lifestyle brand now has taken over the Beekman gardens as well. The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Vegetable Cookbook is a delectable yearlong trip through the Beekman vegetable bounty and is packed with simple, delicious, and seasonal vegetable-forward recipes that will have readers counting down the months to green shoots every year.

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Sunday, September 28


Kathy Wakile, “Real Housewives of New Jersey,” Indulge: Delicious Little Desserts that Keep Life Sweet

Kathy Wakile is a wife, mother, sister and great friend as well as an Honorary Ambassador Chef at the L'Ecole Culinaire, an ACCSC-accredited culinary school. She is now a #1 best seller author on Amazon with her new dessert cook book with Miriam Harris Indulge: Delicious Little Desserts that Keep Life Sweet, which presents over 75 recipes illuminated by 35 full-color photographs, all broken down by season, where she shares family stories and memories all wrapped up in her sweet treat recipes.

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Chloe Coscarelli, Chloe’s Vegan Italian Kitchen: 150 Pizzas, Pastas, Pestos, Risottos & Lots of Creamy Italian Classics

In Chloe’s Vegan Italian Kitchen, popular vegan chef and winner of the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars Chloe Coscarelli proves that you don’t have to give up pastas in creamy sauces, cheesy-style pizzas, or luscious tiramisu to eat vegan. Coscarelli traveled to her family’s homeland and dug into her roots to veganize Italian favorites that have always relied on butter, cream, meat, and eggs—until now.

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Fogo De Chao Cooking Demo

Sample Fogo De Chao’s delicious signature cuisine, prepared in the traditional Brazilian way, by their gaucho chefs.

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Joe Goetze, The Founding Farmers Cookbook

Chef Joe Goetze of Founding Farmers presents the restaurant’s new cookbook. The book features 100 accessible, farm-to-fork recipes for true food & drink from the restaurant, owned by American family farmers.

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View Full Bookfest Schedule



Sept 25-27, 2015
Fri-Sun: llam - 7pm


Baltimore Inner Harbor

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