It’s time for April’s book o’ the month, one of my favorite features in our new posting rhythm here on the blog. And I couldn’t be more excited about this book if I tried—I wanted to read it the nanosecond I heard about it, and the contents within have completely lived up to my expectations.

Bread & Wine by Shauna Niequist isn’t a cookbook. I mean, there’s recipes inside (and lots of gluten-free ones at that!), but its purpose is not to teach you how to cook. Shauna’s heart here is to celebrate what happens around the table, both the mingling of ingredients and the hearts of people. And it’s to push you to think differently about the significance of your cooking, and that it is eternally valuable because of the relationships it forges.

shauna niequist

I laughed and cried reading this book—true story. It made me long for more of a community here in my new town, and it made me grateful for the wild intricacies of butter and mushrooms and sweet potatoes. I nodded in understanding when Shauna wrote about feasting and fasting, having recently done that myself. And good gracious if it didn’t make me crave a lake house.

Plus, how can you not like a book that quotes both G.K. Chesterton and 50 Cent?

reed cooking

Earlier this week my kids helped me make Shauna’s recipe for mango chicken curry (I made it paleo by subbing coconut flour for white, and by not eating the rice the rest of my family ate). It was devoured. The kids loved it, Kyle and I loved it. I’m adding it to our repertoire.

I’m eager to make many more of her recipes—the flourless brownies, the steak au poivre, the bacon-wrapped dates (mmm… bacon). But I’m also eager to perhaps start a local cooking and book club here in my little town, and see what happens when friendships are forged over food and table. Thanks for the encouragement there, Shauna.

And when you read this book, you can’t tell me you didn’t nod and say a resounding amen to the poignant chapter titled “swimsuit, ready or not.” It preached.

Read this book. It’ll bless you wildly.

bread & wine


Shauna is giving TEN Simple Mom readers a copy of Bread & Wine! To enter a chance to win, leave any comment below this post. (If you’re reading this post via email, please click over to the original post and leave a comment on the blog.)

In the meantime, read more of Shauna’s words at her fantastic blog.

This giveaway is now closed.