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Epithet
01-14-2010, 06:12 PM
I figured that now that we have a board for food, we may as well have a thread on cookbooks.

The funky thing about living in Louisiana is that you see all these "regional cookbook" dealies that have recipes for roasting an alligator and whatever else. What's even stranger is that alligator is actually pretty tasty.

Torgo
01-14-2010, 06:26 PM
Alton Brown's I'm Just Here for the Food (http://www.amazon.com/Im-Just-Here-Food-Version/dp/158479559X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263521800&sr=8-2) is a personal essential. It breaks down the concepts and basic science of cooking in a very approachable, amusing way. If baking is your thing, I'm Just Here for More Food (http://www.amazon.com/Im-Just-Here-More-Food/dp/1584793414/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263521800&sr=8-3) is quite good as well.

Garde Manger: The Art and Craft of the Cold Kitchen (http://www.amazon.com/Garde-Manger-Kitchen-Culinary-Institute/dp/0470055901/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263521851&sr=1-1) is simply the best book I've seen on pantry prep, and is worth every penny. Not only does it teach, but it's packed with recipes for all manner of salads, dressings, sauces, sausages, various forcemeats, and classical techniques like pate, terrine, and roulade.

I'm only now just starting to dig into it, but Professional Baking (http://www.amazon.com/Professional-Baking-Wayne-Gisslen/dp/0471783498/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263522102&sr=1-8) seems to be a fantastic all-in-one resource.

The Flavor Bible (http://www.amazon.com/Flavor-Bible-Essential-Creativity-Imaginative/dp/0316118400/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263522204&sr=1-1) is probably the best encyclopedia of cuisine, ingredient, and flavor pairings on the market. I don't own a copy myself, but it's extremely comprehensive. I have the authors' previous work, Culinary Artistry (http://www.amazon.com/Culinary-Artistry-Andrew-Dornenburg/dp/0471287857/ref=pd_sim_b_2).

ringworm
01-14-2010, 06:55 PM
By far my favorite cookbook is The New Best Recipe (http://www.amazon.com/New-Best-Recipe-All-New/dp/0936184744/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263524056&sr=1-1) by Cook's Illustrated.

Daikaiju
01-16-2010, 09:13 AM
Not to overhype AB but Good Eats; The Early Years and Feating On Asphalt; the River Run are great cookbooks and reads.

benjibot
01-16-2010, 09:27 AM
For omnivores there is only one cookbook you really need: The Joy of Cooking. It really is a spectacularly useful book. If you find an edition from the 1970's or earlier it will even tell you how to dress wild game.

Our kitchen is vegan. My wife is an ardent vegan, I'm kind of a half-assed vegetarian. We have a shitload of vegan cookbooks, but if I had to choose just one I'd probably pick her most recent acquisition: 1000 Vegan Recipes by Robin Robertson. She's our favorite vegan author now. Her stuff is easy to make and her recipes easy to follow. They're usually pretty grocery store friendly too. Only every so often do we need to go to Whole Foods or what-have-you for a weird ingredient.

Also in vegan cookbooks, we love all the books by Sarah Kramer. They're also quick, grocery store friendly recipes. Particularly if you are a Canadian I think. Seems to be easier to find stuff up there.

We have another cookbook from the wife's lacto-ovo phase called The Passionate Vegetarian by an author with probably the best name ever: Crescent Dragonwagon. No, that's her real name. It's a great big hefty tome with some really spectacular recipes that just don't happen to have meat in them.

Violentvixen
01-16-2010, 11:11 AM
I have a subscription to Real Simple (http://www.realsimple.com/), and we really like their monthly recipes. It's one of the few magazines that has consistently good, healthy manageable recipes.

ravinoff
01-16-2010, 11:27 AM
I recently got The Silver Spoon (http://www.amazon.com/Silver-Spoon-Phaidon-Press/dp/0714845310/) (Il cucchiaio d'argento) which is kinda like an Italian equivalent to the Joy of Cooking. Its been a bestseller in Italy for half a century.

It's really big, 1300 pages or so. I've only cooked a couple things from it but so far I really like the book.

Ethan
01-16-2010, 11:56 AM
For omnivores there is only one cookbook you really need: The Joy of Cooking. It really is a spectacularly useful book. If you find an edition from the 1970's or earlier it will even tell you how to dress wild game.

Nah, that is one of the two. Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything is basically a new take on the classic Joy Of Cooking form, meant for the enlightened 21st century man who has a bunch of vegan friends, has seen Food, Inc. and King Corn, has read The Omnivore's Dilemma, but still enjoys serious eating and cooking with minimal political and moral pretense.

Sven
01-16-2010, 04:48 PM
Okay, as... quaint... as Joy of Cooking is, there's only one choice (http://www.amazon.com/Jacques-P%C3%A9pins-Complete-Techniques-P%C3%A9pin/dp/1579121659/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1263689254&sr=8-2) if you're serious.

Pepin's memoir is also excellent, but that's a topic for another thread.

Dawnswalker
01-16-2010, 04:55 PM
What's wrong with the Joy of Cooking? Yes, it is a bit dated, and you have to be careful to make sure the edition you're using has the correct measurement units for your country, but as far as the basics for non-vegetarians goes, you could do worse.

Matchstick
01-16-2010, 07:56 PM
I have both the Pepin book Sven mentioned and the Bittman one destro mentioned. I've used the latter quite a bit, but still haven't gotten around to spending much time with the former, to my shame.

benjibot
01-16-2010, 10:25 PM
Nah, that is one of the two. Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything is basically a new take on the classic Joy Of Cooking form, meant for the enlightened 21st century man who has a bunch of vegan friends, has seen Food, Inc. and King Corn, has read The Omnivore's Dilemma, but still enjoys serious eating and cooking with minimal political and moral pretense.

Oh yeah, good choice. I've read a lot about this one, both the original and the recent rewrite, and it sounds excellent. I'd probably put this at the top of my list were I able to make any of it in my house.

Elfir
01-19-2010, 07:01 AM
Cake Mix Doctor (http://www.cakemixdoctor.com/cakemixblog/index.php) - Recipes for dressing up cake mixes to compete with scratch cakes for tastiness. There are four cake books right now, including a chocolate cake book and a cupcake book. There are a few 'doctor' books related to dinner-making but I have no experience with them.

The German Chocolate Upside Down Cake is especially delicious/unhealthy.

Gwrrrk
01-19-2010, 07:10 AM
You know, I just use the internet to find out how to make something.

Although i do dip into some of the cookbooks that we have lying around (the joy of cooking is one of these) plus I have a couple of specialized cookbooks for certain types of foods (Indian food, bread recipies, etc).

upupdowndown
01-19-2010, 08:38 PM
Nah, that is one of the two. Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything is basically a new take on the classic Joy Of Cooking form, meant for the enlightened 21st century man who has a bunch of vegan friends, has seen Food, Inc. and King Corn, has read The Omnivore's Dilemma, but still enjoys serious eating and cooking with minimal political and moral pretense.

I have a lot of cookbooks, but the Bittman is my bible, man. It's really geared towards the home cook and has a plethora of simple yet very tasty recipes that have lots of clever variations. I use other cookbooks if I'm entertaining and want to cook up a show-stopper dish. I use Bittman to learn new cooking tricks that I use for weeknight dinners. Bittman taught me how to make my own bread easily enough that I could do it every week, Bittman taught me half of the various veggies for dinner techniques I use, and Bittman taught me how to do more with eggs than just scramble them. There's not a week that goes by that I don't open up the book at least once.

The New Vegetarian Epicure is a great veggie cookbook if you're looking to entertain - lots of the recipes are exquisite and faaaaancy. But it's not really an everyday cookbook; it's organized by menus and it's all entertaining focused. Some good easier recipes in there if you're looking to do a little digging. Surprisingly awesome desserts, including a Chocolate Chili Torte which obsessed people at my last housewarming when I made it.

Small Batch Baking teaches you how to make teeny tiny batches of cookies and cakes for when you want fresh baked dessert for a day, not a week. You can make five cookies at a time, or make teeny-tiny layer cakes using old soup cans. It's a lot of fun!

Violentvixen
01-19-2010, 08:46 PM
You know, I just use the internet to find out how to make something.

See, I use cookbooks for when I have no idea what I want. I like to be able to just browse through the book and decide something looks tasty and make it.

Matchstick
01-19-2010, 08:49 PM
Small Batch Baking teaches you how to make teeny tiny batches of cookies and cakes for when you want fresh baked dessert for a day, not a week. You can make five cookies at a time, or make teeny-tiny layer cakes using old soup cans. It's a lot of fun!

OMG! I've always thought that I'd like to have a way to do stuff like this, because I love things like cakes and cookies. However, since there's only 3 of us, we'd be eating whatever I made for days and days.

upupdowndown
01-19-2010, 08:50 PM
Matchstick, you really have to check the book out. It has lots of "fancy" cakes - not just yellow and chocolate. Last one I made was blackberry jam spice cake with molasses frosting. Tasty AND adorable!

Red Hedgehog
01-20-2010, 02:07 AM
I'll throw in another recommendation for Joy of Cooking. It has basically every American (and adopted American) dish you can think of and bases for all of them.

Elfir
01-20-2010, 04:16 AM
Small Batch Baking teaches you how to make teeny tiny batches of cookies and cakes for when you want fresh baked dessert for a day, not a week. You can make five cookies at a time, or make teeny-tiny layer cakes using old soup cans. It's a lot of fun!

Adding that to my list right now. I see those tiny two bite cupcakes (and their pans, paper cups, etc) sometimes and never have a clue how to make them myself. Smaller batches is always good, because I WILL keep eating the sweets until they're gone.

Falselogic
01-20-2010, 12:45 PM
Besides several of William-Sonoma's regional cook books the standards in our house are the Joy of Cooking and How to Cook Everything. The wife recently got the French equivalent of Joy, I Know How to Cook, which was published in English for the first time last year, it also has an entire section on wine pairings which is great.

Another great source is America's test Kitchen, I can't recommend their cookbook and their magazine enough! Simple easy recipes that taste like you're a real pro.

I also find a pocket Bartender guide to be useful

Matchstick
01-20-2010, 06:03 PM
Another great source is America's Test Kitchen, I can't recommend their cookbook and their magazine enough! Simple easy recipes that taste like you're a real pro.

Agreed. Their show is also fun to watch.

vaterite
01-20-2010, 06:56 PM
Another great source is America's test Kitchen, I can't recommend their cookbook and their magazine enough! Simple easy recipes that taste like you're a real pro.

I concur. The cook's illustrated magazine is the best, almost everything we've made from them (going back four or five years) has been fantastic. Although, I'm always a little leery of experimenting with their recipies, because they've already done that.

Ethan
01-20-2010, 07:06 PM
A friend once mentioned to me that America's Test Kitchen becomes much better when you imagine that the host has conflicting sexual tensions with every female on the show. He was right.

taosterman
01-09-2014, 08:12 AM
THREADVIVAL

California expat needs cookbooks that specialize in recipes that use seasonal produce. I have a few (Veganomicon is great in that regard) but I really want more. Suggestions?

(seasonal recipe websites are also acceptable)

Falselogic
01-09-2014, 08:45 AM
THREADVIVAL

California expat needs cookbooks that specialize in recipes that use seasonal produce. I have a few (Veganomicon is great in that regard) but I really want more. Suggestions?

(seasonal recipe websites are also acceptable)

Fresh from the Market (http://www.amazon.com/Fresh-Market-Seasonal-Tourondel-Charlotte/dp/B007R90UGG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1389285842&sr=8-1&keywords=fresh+from+market)has seasonal recipes as well as lists of which veggies/fruits are in season during the year. It is by far our fav seasonal cookbook

Rufferto
01-09-2014, 12:58 PM
Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=vegetarian%20cooking%20for%20everyone&sprefix=veget%2Caps&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Avegetarian%20cooking%20for%20ever yone)

teekun
01-27-2014, 10:09 PM
For Christmas I got a copy of Jerusalem: A Cookbook (http://www.amazon.com/Jerusalem-A-Cookbook-Yotam-Ottolenghi/dp/1607743949) and every page of this thing makes my mouth water. It's certainly not full of quick and easy recipes, but they all seem like they'll be well worth the effort.

Matchstick
01-27-2014, 10:17 PM
For Christmas I got a copy of Jerusalem: A Cookbook (http://www.amazon.com/Jerusalem-A-Cookbook-Yotam-Ottolenghi/dp/1607743949) and every page of this thing makes my mouth water. It's certainly not full of quick and easy recipes, but they all seem like they'll be well worth the effort.

I got this from Umby for Festivus. It's definitely filled with interesting stuff (both recipes and general food writing). I made the Lemony Leek Meatballs a week or two ago and they were pretty delicious, although I have some tweeks to make now that I've done them once and understand what they should be like.

teekun
01-27-2014, 10:19 PM
I got this from Umby for Festivus. It's definitely filled with interesting stuff (both recipes and general food writing). I made the Lemony Leek Meatballs a week or two ago and they were pretty delicious, although I have some tweeks to make now that I've done them once and understand what they should be like.

Yeah, I can already see that my main problem is going to be a lack of familiarity with the cuisine I'll be cooking. I don't know what half of these dishes should turn out like, so I'll just be looking to make them taste good.

Matchstick
03-16-2014, 08:48 PM
For my birthday, my parents got me a copy of the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. Just paging through it is a delight. I can't wait to try some of the recipes.

Falselogic
03-16-2014, 09:19 PM
For my birthday, my parents got me a copy of the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. Just paging through it is a delight. I can't wait to try some of the recipes.

Its one of the wife's favorites

Violentvixen
09-15-2015, 10:58 PM
So after loving two selected recipes in Sunset (broiled Salmon with asparagus (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/broiled-salmon-asparagus-creme-fraiche) and Spicy chicken thighs with squash (http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/spicy-chicken-thighs-summer-squash)I got the cookbook Sheet Pan Suppers (http://www.amazon.com/Sheet-Pan-Suppers-Surprising-Hands-Off/dp/0761178422) from the library. It might be my new favorite cookbook. I love the general approach and how easy these are and almost all of these dishes are exactly the sort of thing I like.