Wednesday, August 26, 2009

If At First You Don't Succeed, Order Pizza

I'm in love. I always have been, always will be. With whom? Well, not someone but something. Cookbooks. I should probably discuss this addiction to a paid professional. I'm serious, I can't walk into a bookstore without browsing the cookbook section. I can't go through a work week without searching Amazon for newly released cookbooks. I have never not asked for some sort of cookbook for Christmas. I don't go one weekend without experimenting with a handful of new recipes.

What is the attraction? The author, the tantalizing recipes, the sensational photography? All of the above. I'm not even going to mention my obsession with food magazines and food blogs, that's another story for another time.

Last night, I was assessing the decor in my apartment. What changes do I want to make? What additions do I want to purchase? What rearranging do I need to do? Then it hit me. I have A LOT of cookbooks. They're under my coffee table, on top of my end tables, in my cabinets, on top of my fridge, and in my bedroom. They're beginning to take over my apartment, like an army of ants.

Some are challenging. There are a few that I have never once successfully recreated a meal from, I just like dreaming of that accomplishment and glancing at the creative photographs. Some are charming. I have all of the Magnolia Bakery cookbooks. They make me want to dress up skirt aprons, braid my hair and move to the country. Some don't have any photographs. Those sometimes frustrate me, I'm a visual person. You know, the ones with the hand drawn images of recipes, what is that? I don't know what that's supposed to be! Is that a casserole or a clown face? Some are educational, like The Flavor Bible. Truth be told, all have taught me something.

I'm not saying I know my stuff, but I have learned a lot from these books. If you're looking for something new or a change of taste, here are my recommendations:

  • Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook by Martha Stewart
  • The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity, Based on the Wisdom of America's Most Imaginative Chefs by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg
  • The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life by Ellie Krieger
  • Essentially Lilly: A Guide to Colorful Holidays by Lilly Pulitzer
  • Grilled Cheese: 50 Recipes to Make You Melt by Marlena Spieler
  • Rustic Fruit Desserts: Crumbles, Buckles, Cobblers, Pandowdies, and More by Cory Schrieber and Julie Richardson
  • The Ski Country Cookbook by Barbara Scott-Goodman and Rita Maas
  • Giada's Kitchen: New Italian Favorites by Giada De Laurentiis
  • At Home with Magnolia: Classic American Recipes from the Owner of Magnolia Bakery by Allysa Torey
  • Everyday Food: Great Food Fast by Martha Stewart Living Magazine
  • Cover & Bake by Cook's Illustrated Magazine
  • The Best Light Recipe by Cook's Illustrated Magazine
  • Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics: Fabulous Flavor from Simple Ingredients by Ina Garten
  • The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl by Ree Drummond


Photo Source: yvestown


  1. Man, I have some cookbooks to send you. Since I don't--and probably won't--ever use them ;)

  2. Thanks for the recommendations! I'll have to pick up a few of those (I don't own ANY cookbooks!).

  3. I love cookbooks too, and Pioneer Woman, and the Twilight saga (and I'm 35 so what is up with that, I read Twilight 3 times I need to get a hobby). Cool site,keep it up. Oh BTW,happen to be giving any Kitchen Aid mixers or Nikons away. Just wonderin.

  4. Is there any such thing as an on-line cookbook swap?

  5. No mixers or cameras to give away, sorry! Ha! I'll leave the big giveaways to Pioneer Woman. I have another giveaway coming up shortly though...for foodies! And I would love an online cookbook swap, that's a genius idea... :)