Thursday, December 6, 2012

Ten Well Loved Cookbooks

I have a confession to make.  The weight of our cookbook collection was rivaled only by the weight of the piano on our move.  Steve and I both love cookbooks, have been known to read them like novels.  For the past year and a half we could only have a couple of boxes of them with us.  So I had to think about the ones that I not necessarily loved the most, but used the most.  Since we didn't have access to the internet for a while I wanted to have a good range of titles, in case we were craving a certain cuisine, or ended up with an abundance of one particular thing (like tomatoes, or a half a pig!)

These ten books have been with me, in whatever I had for a kitchen during our travels, and are here with me now as we wait for their hundreds of friends to join them on the shelves once our renovation is complete.  Each of these books has been used countless times in my kitchen, and each has dozens of grease marks & various others splatters that prove a cookbook's worth beyond any other measure.  The last 2 are new to me within the last year, and have already achieved this status.

In no particular order:

  • The Joy of Cooking ~ A Classic that no kitchen should be without
  • How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman ~ As the Washington Post said, "Think of it as a more hip Joy of Cooking"
  • The Best Recipe by the editors of Cooks' Illustrated ~ Now that we're settling in, we can finally start getting Cooks Illustrated again, it doesn't get much better for my left-brained husband than learning the science behind the cooking.  And the food is awesome too! (this link takes you to the New Best Recipe, since ours doesn't seem to be available anymore)
  • Vegan Planet ~ by Robin Robertson ~ Even if you're not a vegan, if you want to add more vegetable dishes to your repertoire, this book is a gem.  If you are a vegan, this is a treasure!
  • Stocking Up 3 by  Carol Hupping ~ Technically a book on preserving, but her seasonal recipes are wonderful, straightforward, and helpful when you are in abundance of one or two particular items.  Did you know you could freeze eggs?
  • Madhur Jaffrey's Indian Cooking ~ We love Indian food, in fact our first date was at an Indian restaurant.  Sadly there are none near our new home.  These recipes, although require many spices, are straightforward enough for anyone to follow.  Nothing like walking into the house when Saag is simmering..
  • Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich ~ I want to grow up to be an Italian grandmother someday and feed everyone I meet this food.  It doesn't get much better.
  • Pretend Soup  and Other Real Recipes by Katzen & Henderson ~Because kids cook too!
  • Make the Bread Buy the Butter by Jennifer Reese ~ Wonderful, mentioned here before.  Jennifer also blogs at The Tipsy Baker.
  • The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila ~ I read this from beginning to end while we were in a hotel, kitchenless.  Her photographs,  stories, and anecdotes that go with each recipe are worth it alone, but the recipes are scrumptious!  Alana also blogs at Eating from the Ground Up.

And there you have it.  With these ten cookbooks, you can make just about anything.  Fortunately most libraries have many of these titles on their shelves, so you can get cooking!!

What cookbook(s) do you return to again and again?


  1. Thanks for sharing, I will have to check some of them out from the library.

    1. That's great! Let me know if you make anything new from them:-)

  2. I must say the one that I go to the most: Martha Stewart's Cookies. De-lish!

    1. Oh, thank you! Perfect, as I have cookies on the brain these days:-)

  3. Hello. Thanks for sharing the cook books that most move you. Ourselves have both Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian -though we use the vegetarian one a lot less. I cook a lot less than my partner, but one of my personal favorites is The Native Foods Restaurant Cookbook ( And recently I've been baking a lot from the Allergen-Free Bakers' Handbook ( Made my first from-scratch cupcakes yesterday!


  4. Oops! :^) Typo-embarrassment. "Ourselves" should be "Our shelves."



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