One of the sections I love to peruse in the library is our large collection of cookbooks. Now, you may think cookbooks are so passé now that we have the internet. If you have ever had this thought, think again. Cookbooks are not just for recipes. They have beautiful photos, food preparation techniques, meal planning ideas. I know I am not the only one who enjoys reading through each recipe like a novel. Another added benefit of using a cookbook is that you are able to take your time reading through recipes without having to stare at a screen. Trust me this is a more relaxing way to cook.
With all that stated here are some cookbooks that have enlightened me on what a good recipe is all about:
One book that must be read is Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer. This book, which was first published in 1931, has been a cooking reference staple. Want to know how to make fresh hot cocoa? Need a grains cooking chart? How about a guide for cutting poultry and wildfowl? There are very few cookbooks that are filled with answers to almost all the cooking questions you might have. This was one the of the first cookbooks I ever owned and to this day I still make Milk Bread and Cinnamon Raisin Loaf both recipes can be found on page 597. This cookbook reads like a novel. The recipes are laid out in a logical order and feature no pictures. I cannot say enough about why this book should be in every kitchen, or at least borrowed from the library often.
One of the things I have learned is that when it comes to cookbooks you truly cannot judge a book by its cover or title for that matter. I often checkout books that in theory don’t match my eating style but in reality often have recipes that I end up enjoying and many times become a favorite cookbook. For example The Grain-Free Sugar-Free Dairy-Free Family Cookbook by Leah Webb. Now my family is not free of anything but we enjoyed the Chicken Noodle Soup recipe on page 166 and the Superfoods Trail Mix on page 172. So when looking at our large selection of cookbooks be brave and checkout something new. You never know what you will find.
This is another book that might not seem appealing at first. The Official Bright Line Eating Cookbook by Susan Peirce Thompson. This is the companion cookbook to Bright Line Eating by Susan Peirce Thompson. What I like about this book is that it is a part of an eating regimen that I do not follow but again has many recipes I enjoy. For example there is an awesome Very Veggie Chili on page 225 and Chapter 9 features Dressings, Sauces, and Salsas that are delicious and very easy to make. Try the Lemon Tahini Dressing on page 233, or the Southwestern-Style Vinaigrette on page 236. The entire premise of Bright Line Eating is to focus on a set amount fruits, vegetables, and protein while not consuming any sugar or flour. Again not an eating style that all would enjoy but still a cookbook with enjoyable recipes.
We have all types of cookbooks for every interest and taste. My hope is that next time you are in the library you will leave with some new cookbooks to inspire you in the kitchen, or to just relax and flip through. What do you look for in a cookbook? Next time you are here let us know. We would love to help you find your next favorite cookbook.
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