I can't have a book review month without telling you about my favorite cookbooks. So, here are my four favorites...plus an interesting option.
Tied for First Place:
- The Mayo Clinic Williams-Sonoma Cookbook. Pictures and nutrition information for every recipe. Easy to follow. Delicious...every recipe I have tried is outstanding. And the International Association of Culinary Professionals agree...the book won the Julia Child Cookbook Award
- The Joy of Cooking. This one recently came into first place. Why? We have a garden. Previously it was not a favorite. The cookbook has no pictures. (That is a downside for me as I need help visualizing what a recipe will be like.) And it reads like a textbook. In fact, my mother-in-law said it actually was a textbook for her in college. If I were a "serious" cook, it would have always been invaluable. For example, how to de-bone a whole chicken is explained in detail...hmmm...I have a butcher so I don't need that. But now with the garden? Last year we had more squash coming in than I could make squash casseroles. Ta-da. Look up "squash" in Joy of Cooking and presto, there are over 30 recipes with squash. If you have food coming in through a CSA or your garden, or you are a "serious" cook, Joy of Cooking is a must have.
The Schwarzbein Principle Cookbook. Sadly, no pictures. Easy to understand and follow. Very healthy recipes. Great variety.
Roast Lamb in the Olive Groves. Yippee. Lots of pictures. And it is a delight to read. The recipes and stories make you feel like you are in Greece. Delicious and healthy. Some of the recipes I will never use. (Octopus? Nah. Whole John Dory with tomatoes and fennel? Not so much.) But the recipes add a variety I would have never tried without the cookbook.
Just for Fun:
The Williamsburg Art of Cookery. (You can order this cookbook from Colonial Williamsburg.) I doubt I will ever cook from this book, but it is fun to read how recipes were written 200 years ago...and what they ate. Split Pea Soup? Familiar. Pickled Figs and Gerkins? Well, I don't even know what a Gerkins is.