Up until now, I hadn’t really thought of my cookbooks as a collection. I mean, collections are things that sit around and collect dust. My cookbooks don’t have a chance to get dusty. I organize my cookbooks, I switch them around, and I thumb through them regularly. They are used.
Broken-in. Written-in. Referenced.
Read like a novel. Often.
Cookbooks for me are a personal journey almost like a culinary diary of different moments in my life.Rachel Khoo, The Little Swedish Kitchen – My chat with Rachel Khoo, Nordic Notes, July 27, 2018
That goes for me too. I write in my cookbooks (and I think you should too). I date the recipes I have made, along with a 1-5 star rating, if someone specific loved it, and any substitutions or notes I have for my future self.
But I suppose that after a certain number of a specific thing, it kind of counts as a collection. What’s that number? Beats me, but maybe it’s also about intent. Maybe it’s possible to have a collection of eight or nine cookbooks. I mean, you have to start somewhere. It’s not just about owning them. There’s a whole art involved, what with reading about cookbooks, thinking about cookbooks, figuring out what to add next, and trying to find said cookbooks from a list that only gets bigger.
I don’t know how many cookbooks I own, because my purpose in ownership isn’t to own all the things, but rather to only own those books that I will use, do use, or find incredibly appealing for design’s sake or nostalgia. Too bad there are probably still thousands of those!
See, I don’t buy cookbooks to buy cookbooks. Clutter bothers me. I know, this sounds a bit odd, seeing as how I have more than the usual “kitchen shelf” kind of collection. But, if I am going to buy something, I’m going to use it. I am not a dragon hoarding gold and jewels.
“The definition of a collector is someone who collects objects discriminately, someone who selects and chooses.”Malcolm Gladwell, Dragon Psychology 101, Revisionist History, June 18, 2020
Like most kids, I went through different collecting phases. I collected rocks and minerals, vintage teacups, Winnie the Pooh (which were all lost in a military move a decade ago)—even those blue things from the inside of liter pop bottles for a short while. Weird, I know. I don’t know why. My guess is because they were shiny, blue, and took some work to get out of the lids. Those collections or childish hoardings, more like, have long since faded. This one endures.
I’m always up for cookbook suggestions. What do you think I HAVE to add to my ever-growing “Cookbook Wants List?” Please tell me the name of the cookbooks you read and the cookbooks you use (bonus points if one cookbook does both!).
Cookbooks I Own
It took me a minute to figure out how to sort this. While I arrange the books in my library by spine color, as I have done for years now, I decided that wasn’t going to fly online. So, my cookbooks are arranged alphabetically by title below. The accompanying images do NOT include every cookbook! Ain’t nobody got time for that. It took a stupid amount of time to do what I did.
If you want to view my community cookbooks and cooking-related magazines, you’ll have to head to a different page. I thought it made more sense to break things up a bit.
While you would think most of the cookbooks in a series or a set would end up together, that’s not always the case. Some authors or series book titles rearrange their wording (I’m looking at you, Farm Journal and Martha Stewart). Just so you know.
New titles will be added into each list as I receive them over time. Look to the “Updated” note under the first image in the caption at the top of this page. I include the date, so you can keep tabs on new additions, no problem.
Reading cookbooks will help with just about anything in your life, including heartbreak.Isabel Gillies
While my cookbook library is organized by white and beige cookbook dust jackets, this list will begin alphabetically, starting with numbers. To hunt up a specific title, use my handy dandy search bar or “control + F” on your keyboard to type in a term. And, please, do tell me what I need to own next! I’m always interested in learning about great cookbooks.
30 Minute Thai Cooking (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When I was a teen, family-owned 5-Star Thai in Crown Point, IN opened and I went there every chance I got. Visits home include a trip whenever possible. This cookbook includes Thai food you love like Drunken Noodles, Hot-and-Sour Noodles, and Thai Fragrant Coconut Rice.
100 Best Decorated Cookies: Featuring 750 Step-by-Step Photos by Julie Anne Hession (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
If you thought beautiful decorated cookies were out of your reach, this cookbook is dedicated to the craft. Photos take out the guesswork as steps are shared in full-color. Recipes included.
100 Cookies: The Baking Book for Every Kitchen with Classic Cookies, Novel Treats, Brownies, Bars, and More by Sarah Kieffer (2020) (Amazon) (EBAY)
Merry Christmas to ME, from my mom. My mother has a knack for gift-giving (I get it from her), and this cookbook, though not on my list, is wonderful. I’ve made one recipe out of it (I’ve had it a week at this point), and the cookies disappeared in less than 24 hours. It didn’t make a huge amount, which was fine, and I’ already asked 1. to make them again, like NOW and 2. if Dad ate them all. Yes, yes, I am pretty sure I saw my husband walking around dunking cookies in his coffee. It’s just what he does.
125 Best Casseroles and One-Pot Meals by Rose Murray (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Who doesn’t have a cookbook full of “cream of” casseroles? *hands raised* I hardly use those things! This cookbook is more my speed. The author uses stock, homemade sauces, wines, and more to add in the flavor without the cans–and without a bunch of soup recipes.
125 Best Chicken Recipes by Rose Murray (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I can never have too many chicken-centered cookbooks. We eat a lot of poultry! Sidebar notes offer up helpful serving ideas or a recipe’s backstory. This book would keep anyone from falling into the same old chicken rut.
150 Best Desserts in a Jar by Andrea Jourdan (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Chances are you have plenty of jars lying around. Clean out your cabinets or that shelf in the basement and put those jars to good use! You’ll find the categories especially handy. Desserts in a jar is organized by whether it is a warm item or a cool one and then further broken down by the type–like puddings, tiramisu or chilled cakes, or sweet soups.
150 Best Ebelskiver Recipes by Camilla Saulsbury (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t have an ebelskiver pan so I basically torture myself with this cookbook. Then I think I need to get the stupid pan already…and then never get around to ordering it. Now that we are settled in our “forever home,” the time is now. From breakfast to desert, from simple to sophisticated, there is no end to the ebelskiver options.
The 163 Best Paleo Slow Cooker Recipes: 100% Gluten-Free by Judith Finlayson (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My husband and I went Paleo for the longest thirty days of my life several years ago. If I had had this cookbook, maybe I wouldn’t have contemplated murder over a lack of carbs. Maybe. You may be familiar with Judith Finlayson. She’s written a slew of books for Robert Rose Inc. I pretty much assume that, when I see her name or Robert Rose, it’s a good one.
175 Best Mini Pie Recipes: Sweet to Savory (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Pie is a good thing. Mini pies are an even better thing! Our boys are so obsessed with “taking things on the go” whether it’s the park or the backyard, mini pies fit that whole handheld convenience. As with most cookbooks from the publisher, don’t expect a lot of images. You don’t need them anyway. It’s mini pie!
200 Best Ice Pop Recipes by Andrew Chase (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You think ice pops are boring? Not. At. All. You just didn’t know there could be so many different kinds–and more grown-up flavors too. This book offers ice pop recipes that are far more than the simple fruit pops (although those are in here too). You’ll find Latin American flavors, cocktail hour, ice pops using herbs, spices, or vegetables, tropical fruits, and less-drip ice pops perfect for kids. Yes, there is more. Grab a copy and cool down your summer.
200 Easy Mexican Recipes: Authentic Recipes From Burritos to Enchiladas by Kelley Cleary Coffeen (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I eat Mexican food multiple times a week–I usually have a homemade burrito for lunch. I love it all. While tacos likely spring to mind when you think “Mexican food,” there are plenty of other recipes you can make in your home that won’t take all day. Flip open this cookbook and see.
200 Best Panini Recipes by Tiffany Collins (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Panini are probably the best invention ever.This cookbook breaks them down into breakfast and brunch, vegetarian, beef, and pork panini, as well as a section “just for kids.” The book closes with dessert panini and a section on condiments so you can make your own accompaniments.
The 250 Best Brownies, Bars and Squares by Esther Brody (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Esther wrote my first favorite cookbook (250 Best Muffin Recipes). It’s the one cookbook both our boys turn to when I ask if there’s anything in particular they want for breakfast. They use it to make muffins on their own (seriously, get your kids started in the kitchen early). Her books can be counted on for consistent results. Again, as with most cookbooks from this publisher, do not count on seeing many images. But that’s okay. Images or no, with Esther’s help you can bake up share-worthy brownies, bars, and the like.
The 250 Best Cookie Recipes (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You know my girl, Esther. How could I not have a cookie book by her too? As with the majority of other books by this publisher (Robert Rose, Inc.) don’t expect a bunch of images. You won’t even miss them with the clear direction provided with each recipe. Categories include: Cut, Sliced, Specialty, Drop, Biscotti, and Sandwich (among others).
The 250 Best Muffin Recipes by Esther Brody (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Page one of my cookbook is a mess. It gets worse the further you go in. Yes, this is another cookbook I’ve had for two decades. I have baked and baked and baked some more from this book until most pages are borderline gross and disgusting and practically unreadable. But, hey, it’s easy to flip to my favorite recipes at least. Get this one. It’s excellent. This copy has been reissued with a new cover, so it doesn’t resemble my cookbook but the content inside is supposed to be the same.
300 Best Homemade Candy Recipes: Brittles, Caramels, Chocolate, Fudge, Truffles and So Much More by Jane Sharrock (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Look at that variety! Cook’s notes, cooking aids, and a selection of candy recipes worth making will have anyone antsy for kitchen time. Again, don’t plan on a ton of photos. Some recipes do have full-color step-by-step images and will reference the page number. The author learned candy-making from her mother. And it shows. Jane knows what she is doing and how to explain herself so you will too.
300 Best Stir Fry Recipes by Nancie McDermott (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t do much in the way of stir fry, but this cook is likely to change everything. Five-Spice Pork with Bok Choy and Green Onions is calling my name. Get the book, grab your wok, and see what speaks to you.
300 Best Homemade Candy Recipes: Brittles, Caramels, Chocolate, Fudge, Truffles and So Much More by Jane Sharrock (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Look at that variety! Cook’s notes, cooking aids, and a selection of candy recipes worth making will have anyone antsy for kitchen time. Again, don’t plan on a ton of photos. Some recipes do have full-color step-by-step images and will reference the page number. The author learned candy-making from her mother. And it shows. Jane knows what she is doing and how to explain herself so you will too.
365 Favorite Brand Name Slow Cooker Recipes & More (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Too many people feel as though slow cookers make soups, stews, and roasts…and that’s about it. Not so. This cookbook will open your eyes to the possibilities from appetizers to main dishes, sides, breads, and even treats.
365 Ways to Cookbook Hamburger by Doyne Nickerson (1960) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Oh, I wish my copy had the book jacket! Without it, it’s still cute, with its bright red background and a chef on the front cover. Inside, you’ll find easy prep ground beef recipes. It’s basically a hamburger gold mine. Meatballs, meat loaves, sandwiches, Mexican specialties, Italian specialties, everything here revolves around ground beef–and, judging from the ingredients, it’s economical too.
457 Sauces and Sauce Dishes: From the Classical Sauce to the New, Light Creations by Marianne Kaltenbach (1983) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Sauces add so much and pack a heck of a flavor punch. They can take things from blah to ah-mazing. Why don’t I make more of them? This book will be my guide.
500 Treasured Country Recipes by Martha Storey (2000)
If you are familiar with those Gooseberry Patch cookbooks, this reminds me of one on the inside, at least from what I remember of them back in the early 2000s. The book divides each page into three columns, so recipes can span over multiple columns. Each recipe does have a story or tip as an intro, with plenty of sidebars within. There is a meaty section on gingerbread houses and decorating alone. It’s a neat book. Thanks, mom!
Adventures in Italian Cooking by James McNair (1980) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The format may leave a little something to be desired. Is it the type of font? The size? The spacing? I don’t know. But overlook that and you have a nice selection of 275 Italian recipes in your hot little hands.
Adventures in San Francisco Sourdough Cooking and Baking by Charles D. Wilford (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Sourdough bread from start to finish. I’m excited to try this cookbook. I will use sourdough for all the things! It does begin with a packet (what?) but it’s easy enough to make a sourdough starter and then use the recipes.
The All-New Ultimate Bread Machine Cookbook: 101 Brand New Irresistible Foolproof Recipes For Family And Friends by Tom Lacalamita (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You know my love for bread. New bread recipes make me happy. This book lacks images but it’s bread! So I don’t know how necessary images are anyway.
AllRecipes Dinner Tonight: Over 400 Best Loved Recipes from Allrecipes .com, the World’s #1 cooking website (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My copy contains a purple Post It on the inside front cover with a handful of recipes and page numbers jotted down. I started to write that page 170 was marked with a Post It — but then, I realized I did that one for a recipe I don’t want to forget! It’s not big on images but margins include time breakdowns, the number of star ratings, and helpful tips. I’m a fan.
Almaden Vineyards’ Feasts of Wine and Food by William Rice (1987) (Amazon) (eBay)
Read through my cookbooks long enough, and you’ll see I really like my wine and recipe books. Why wouldn’t I want the experts to lead the way for me in terms of good recipes and the best type of wine to go with it? Divided by menus for a HUGE variety of needs, with suggestions for complementary drinks, make this a surprisingly user-friendly cookbook given its age. It is FULL of stuff I want to make.
The American Country Inn and Bed & Breakfast Cookbook, Vol. 1: More than 1,700 Crowd-Pleasing Recipes from 500 American Inns by Kitty and Lucian Maynard (1987) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
As someone who has stayed in a lot of bed and breakfasts over the years, I knew this would be a book to savor! This book is divided by states, and then by the participating bed and breakfasts with stories and recipes. We have stayed at the Sherman House Inn in Batesville, Indiana (page 99) back in 2011. You can bet I want to try the recipe for Deep-Fried Biscuits! My copy has a couple of tidy handwritten recipes names and page numbers in the front cover. I think I’ll try those first.
The American Country Inn and Bed & Breakfast Cookbook Vol. 2: More than 1800 Crowd-Pleasing Recipes from 600 American and Canadian Inns by Kitty and Lucian Maynard (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A second volume? I had no idea! Now that was a nice Goodwill surprise. “Phyllis” wrote her name in the front cover but I can’t seem to find any earmarks or notes. Bummer. We stayed at the Kintner House in Corydon, Indiana in 2011. It’s fun to see a place we know. Get a copy with the book jacket. My cover-less book gets lost on the shelf without it.
The American Woman’s Cook Book (1948) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t include the editor’s names on this page, but in this case, I feel I must: Ruth Berolzheimer (the director of the Culinary Arts Institute), from the Delineator Cook Book, edited by the Delineator Institute and Martha Van Rensselaer and Flora Rose, the directors of the College of Home Economics, Cornell University. Phew! What a mouthful! But hang with me a moment. These women were influential in their field. Ruth edited a slew of cookbooks for the CAI. In In 1911, Martha Van Rensselaer and Flora Rose granted the first full professorships for women at Cornell. Then, in 1923, Martha Van Rensselaer was named one of the twelve greatest women in the country by the League of Women Voters, according to this Cornell University archive. Martha and Flora were long-time partners until Martha’s death in 1932 (Cornell article viewed here) and were often referred to as “Miss Van Rose” because they were always together. Flora was awarded the Insignia of the Order of the Crown by King Albert of Belgium because she organized food relief for malnourished Belgian children as read in this Cornell article. This cookbook is wonderful. Read “The Friends Who Honor Us” entertaining section. It’s a hoot!
The American Century Cookbook: The Most Popular Recipes of the 20th Century by Jean Anderson (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“Congratulations from Rick and Laura,” reads the inside. Oh, was my copy a wedding present? If so, it’s a great gift. More than 500 recipes, hundreds of illustrations and images, plus food history galore make it a neat look at “back in the day” cooking and baking.
America’s Home Cooking: Creative Recipes from Famous People and Friends Volume V: Family Favorites: From Across the Country (1984)(Amazon) (eBay)
These are the neatest little things! It looks as though these little cookbooks were produced as a tool for AHM Graves Realtors®. The inside cover is supposed to hold a form anyone could use to submit a recipe for inclusion in the next volume. If you ever read the small magazine (I use that term loosely) Home Cooking, it reminds me of those, even though this has nice binding and feels sturdier. This cover screams 1980s. It is awesome! Not only are the man and woman embracing in the kitchen, while their kid awkwardly looks on, but they have that whole 80s portrait glow a la Glamour Shots® (remember that?!?!) thing too!
America’s Home Cooking: Creative Recipes from Famous People and Friends Volume VI: Culinary Classics (Amazon) (eBay)
Another winner from AHM Graves Realtors. This one boasts a few folded over page edges, so I’ll be sure to check those recipes out first. While some recipes turn to mixes and tubes of biscuits and other convenience foods, there are still plenty of homemade items too. These are just fun.
America’s Home Cooking: Creative Recipes from Famous People and Friends Volume VII: America’s Home Cooking (1986) (Amazon) (eBay)
So many different kinds of recipes. I seriously love flipping through these little books. At this size, you know you aren’t going to find a ton of images, but that’s okay. Surprisingly, there are a few and they are in color.
America’s Home Cooking: Creative Recipes from Famous People and Friends Volume VIII: The Harvest Collection (1987) (Amazon) (eBay)
These themed cookbooks are adorable. How many different ways can I say that? Christmas Eve is tomorrow and this cookbook happened to have a recipe for creamed onions. Guess what’s on the menu for Christmas? Random, totally 80s recipes abound (yes, you Microwave Lasagna). Good thing other recipes, like Orange Bars (wow, do those look good) found their way into this collection.
America’s Home Cooking: Creative Recipes from Famous People and Friends Volume IX: Kitchen Keepers (1988) (Amazon) (eBay)
I’d say any recipe is a kitchen keeper, but we all know that isn’t true. Double Chocolate Eggnog, yo. I wouldn’t have thought of such a thing, but now I want it! Maybe that’s just me (it IS Christmas in TWO DAYS). But, these recipes remind me of my mom and hearing her futzing around in the kitchen. I think calling them “keepers” is right on, even by today’s standards.
The Amish Cook: Recollections and Recipes from an Old Order Amish Family by Elizabeth Coblentz with Kevin Willams (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Spontaneous packages from my mother containing cookbooks is pretty much the best thing ever. Mom included a note, “Read this! Fascinating!!” If you ever wondered where I got my love of reading cookbooks like book, books, there ya go. Stories of growing up as an Old Order Amish woman, descriptions of chores, weddings, illness, and the like are interspersed with recipes. It IS a fascinating read.
Amish Cooking (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Mine is inscribed, “For Mary, One of the dearest people in my life. Love you! In Jesus, Judy Stone (Psalms 104). Purchased October 26, 1997 in Liberty, Kentucky at an Amish store.” Originally published in 1977, my book is the fifteen printing from 1995. The foreword shares that the recipes were from their “cookbook, “Favorite Amish Family Recipes,” and taken from the recipe pages of Family Life magazine.”
Antojitos: Festive and Flavorful Mexican Small Plates by Barbra Sibley and Margarite Malfy with Mary Goodbody (2009) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
According to the authors, the owners of La Palapa, a restaurant you can go visit today! This cookbook is full of small plate Mexican recipes that resemble true Mexico City dishes than those found in the US. So, Mexican, Mexican. I love chalupa. Like, I LOVE chalupa. They are so simple, I always feel silly ordering them, but I love them. Chalupa are here in multiple ways! But, what sold me on this cookbook? What made me say, “YES! I need this one!” is this: La Palapa’s Three-Milk Cake (pastel tre leches de la Palapa). Whoa, man.
The Art of Fine Baking by Paula Peck (1961) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Paula didn’t know how to do much of anything in the kitchen when she was first married. But after having a kid, the couple had to eat at home, and Paula learned to cook and bake (according to her forward). But she learned. James A. Beard even wrote her intro. It’s a fun read with recipes you know and recipes you won’t. Paula only wrote two books (the other one is The Art of Good Cooking, which I don’t have yet) that are considered classics today and still appear on “must-have” lists. What a tragedy that she passed away at just 45 years old after a long illness, so says The New York Times obit here.
The Art of French Cooking (1969) by Fernande Garvin (AMAZON) (EBAY)
First published in 1958, this book hit the shelves before Julia Child and Mastering the Art of French Cooking in 1965. No, it doesn’t have the scope of recipes such as in Mastering but this book offers uncomplicated and accessible recipes for anyone who doesn’t want to spend hours in the kitchen but still have success. I’m in love.
The Art of Mexican Cooking: Traditional Mexican Cooking for Aficionados by Diana Kennedy (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Consider this cookbook a textbook read. Some of the ingredients or equipment aren’t going to be found in every area. If you are unable to cook from it, learn a little something from it and enjoy the stories inside.
As Always, Julia: Food, Friendship, and the Making of a Masterpiece Edited by Joan Reardon (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The letters between Julia Child and Avis Devoto are a delightful read. I know, it’s not a cookbook. But, I want to put it here anyway because it’s so good. This book marks the start of a friendship with the joys and frustrations of writing and publishing a book. As always, food.
Aunt Sammy’s Radio Recipes: The Great Depression Cookbook by Ruth Van Deman and Fanny Walker Yeatman (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Aunt Sammy? The intro reads, “Long before Julia Child, there was Aunt Sammy. From 1926-1944–for almost nineteen years, for fifteen minutes a day, five (and, sometimes, six) mornings each week, for over five thousand consecutive broadcasts on more than one hundred radio stations in every part of America, from New York to California, from Texas to Minnesota, from farm town to big city-Aunt Sammy was there. A welcome guest in the homes of her five million “radio friends,” the early star of the airwaves offered advice on what to feed the family for dinner, how to clean house, how to fix a leaky faucet or, or on how to sew a new dress or to raise both vegetables and babies.” She was a made-up character created by the USDA. Fifty women read the same script in fifty studios, used on the regional accents, and became “Aunt Sammy.” The first braille cookbook in 1932 was Aunt Sammy’s. You will enjoy this one.
The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook by Cheryl and Griffith Day (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’ve never been to Savannah, GA, the physical location of the bakery, but I do love the sweet and savory items I’ve made from the Day’s cookbooks. The only downside? The entire clump of pages FELL OUT of my book (and I haven’t even used this one yet–I’d been relying on the library copy until we moved).
Back in the Day Bakery Made with Love: More than 100 Recipes and Make-It-Yourself Projects to Create and Share by Cheryl Day and Griffith Day(2015) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Now this is the book I turn to again and again. I’ve made plenty of delicious baked goods but with 100+ recipes, I haven’t made them all. I could do without the crafts but it’s not like it’s a deal-breaker. I just skip over those pages.
Back to the Table: The Reunion of Food and Family by Art Smith (2001) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The recipes inside make me want to cook everything. I bought the cookbook for that reason (and for sweet potato pecan waffles). Okay, the writing for some of the stories may be a little hokey if you are a cookbook reader like I am. Ignore that part. Focus on the food and you’ll be fine!
Bake From Scratch Volume One: Artisan Recipes for the Home Baker (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Bake magazine is one of my most favorite things. Since moving to Pennsylvania, I can’t find it. *sad panda* Luckily these cookbooks compile all the amazing recipes and GORGEOUS images from a whole year. This cookbook is from the first year of Bake magazine and published in 2017. I need them all.
Baking in America: Traditional and Contemporary Favorites from the Past 200 Years by Greg Patent (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
If you are a cookbook reader like I am, get Baking in America. Yes, there are plenty of recipes in here to keep any baker busy, but there are also excellent side notes containing snippets of early baking info, advice, and tips from the last 200 years.
Ball Blue Book of Preserving by The Ball Corporation (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Neighbor Donna and Margie used to can like nobody’s business. They churned out beans and peaches and grape juice (my favorite) and jellies galore. My husband would joke that in the event of a zombie apocalypse, we would head there and hunker down. We thought we could try canning. My husband made the sauce recipe from this cookbook…but scorched it. Yep, still tasted burned two months later. That was probably a decade ago. I think we could definitely handle it now–and will use this book if we do!
The Banana Lover’s Cookbook by Carol Lindquist (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A cookbook full of banana recipes. As you may imagine, it is not the largest cookbook you will ever see. More than eighty recipes make up this book. No images, but the recipes do sound good. They are far more varied than you think — it isn’t all muffins and cakes. I was pleasantly surprised. Do you think the author still ate bananas after completing this one?
Barefoot Contessa at Home: Everyday Recipes You’ll Make Over and Over Again (2006) by Ina Garten (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My mom has raved about this woman for ages. Snapping up this cookbook made my day! While I haven’t made too much from it, we did enjoy what we’ve tried. As the title shares, it’s about daily cooking and baking type stuff. Still, some of these would work for company as they are just plain good. I think you’ll like it too.
Beat This! Cookbook: Absolutely Unbeatable Knock-’em Dead Recipes for the Very Best Dishes by Ann Hodgman (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Elizabeth Berg mentioned this cookbook in one of her books AND as one book she would recommend back in 2009 on NPR. It’s funny! Seriously. I just read the part about boiling lobsters, and laughed out loud. I’d say I scared the cat, but she is used to such behavior from me, and takes it in stride. Beat This! is supposed to be “best of” recipes. Get it for the humorous intros and keep it because it’s a good one.
Best of the Best Vol. 9: The Best Recipes from the 25 Best Cookbooks of the Year from the Editors of Food & Wine (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I enjoy the “best of the Best” series. Think of it as a small sampling from a variety of cookbooks with a handful of new recipes thrown in for kicks. This edition features recipes from from twenty different titles ranging from specific cuisines like Spanish or French to regions and niche cookery.
Best of the Best Vol. 10: The Best Recipes from the 25 Best Cookbooks of the Year from the Editors of Food & Wine (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Twenty-five cookbooks, 100 recipes, and there you have Food & Wine’s idea of the best cookbooks of the year–from 2007.
Best of the Best Vol. 11: The Best Recipes from the 25 Best Cookbooks of the Year from the Editors of Food & Wine (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Welcome to 2008. This series is such a great way to get reacquainted with cookbook titles you may have missed.
Best of Bridge Home Preserving: 120 Recipes for Jams, Jellies, Marmalade, Pickles, and More (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Cranberry Orange marmalade, strawberry and rhubarb jam, and three-onion relish are but a few of the recipes that have caught my eye. The font in this book is large and easy to read. Images are occasionally scattered throughout.
Best Of Country Pies: 200 Down-Home Favorites From The Best Cooks in the Country (2001) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My first forays into pie-making were directly from this book back when my kids were itty bitty. Needless to say, my copy has less-than-clean pages. I just found a recipe I lost tucked inside so that’s something. This cookbook still holds up and I still use it today.
The Best of the Kitchen Library: Williams-Sonoma Desserts (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You already know I’m a huge fan of Williams-Sonoma cookbooks. I pick them up whenever I see them. You can find the rest in my collecgtion in the “W” section. Rhubarb crisp pie, Mandarin Orange Custard Tart (our youngest LOVES Mandarin oranges and has one every day they are in season, no kidding), sour cream and brown sugar ice cream, well, I have a handful of items on my list. That’s after a brief flip-through. You’ll love the images and the recipes in this expansive book.
The Best of Mr. Food: Quick and Easy Recipes by Art Ginsburg (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Who didn’t know Mr. Food? He was everywhere. Although Mr. Food passed away in 2012 from pancreatic cancer, you can relive his good-natured cheesiness all over again.
Best of the Pillsbury Bake-Off Desserts (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
If you know anything about the Pillsbury Bake-Off, you know it’s often synonymous with goo-ooo-ooo-ooo–ood recipes! While you know I’m not interested in box mixes, this cookbook has a mix of both. In some cases, it’s simple to switch out, like when the recipe has a store-bought crust, to just sub in with one of your own. Wonky recipes dot some of the pages, and yes, it’s surprising that there aren’t more images, but I’m still a fan. I want to try the Coconut Pineapple Tart and the Bananas Foster Tart.
The Best of Martha Stewart: Favorite Comfort Food (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Sometimes, you want food you recognize or remember. You don’t want the fancy stuff or the stuff that takes complicated ingredients. You just want something familiar. You know, comfort food. While the font is rather small on this one, the images and instructions are wonderful.
The Best of Martha Stewart: Favorite Desserts: Our Favorite Recipes for Every Season and Every Occasion (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Again, just like the book above, the font is rather small. But, color images accompany every glorious recipe. From fancy and elaborate (like a tiramisu wedding cake) to something a bit less time-consuming (hello, spoon desserts), this cookbook covers a fair bit of delicious, delicious ground.
The Best of the Midwest: Recipes from Thirty-Two of America’s Finest Restaurants (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another signed copy by the author given as a gift to Lucy from Pat S. for Christmas 1990. This cookbook doesn’t evenly share recipes from across the Midwest. I admit I was bummed to see only two restaurants from Indiana. Restaurants shared recipes menu-style (which you know I love), so you get an entrée, sides, and a dessert recipe from each restaurant. Each section begins with a few pages about the restaurant and the authors’ thoughts on the restaurant, and then you get to the menu and the recipes. No images, but some color illustrations.
The Best Pizza is Made at Home by Donna Rathmell German (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Okay, that’s it! THAT’S IT! That’s the last of the books I own by this woman. When I began making pizza (a decade+ ago now), I relied on this book to help me get started.
Best Recipe Classic: Restaurant Favorites at Home by Cook’s Illustrated (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
After I made the Pork Chops with Rice, Eggs, Onions, and Gravy (yes, it’s different, and yes, it’s amazing), the oldest remarked that it tasted like something from a restaurant. Ha! There you go. These are complex recipes, for the most part. Unlike Cook’s Illustrated Magazine, you’ll find a middle section with full-color images, but they don’t near include every item in the book. But, with the illustrations you’ve already come to know and love, and precise instructions, it isn’t hard to serve fine restaurant-quality meals with the help of this cookbook.
Best Recipes from the Backs of Boxes, Bottles, Cans, and Jars (1982) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My mom used to rave about her mother’s chocolate chip cookies and how they were so good. When I was at music camp as a kid (choir), my mom sent a care package of the cookies. Imagine mom’s surprise when she learned they weren’t some old family recipe–but from the back of a bag! This book will help you make the kind of recipes people think are family heirlooms.
The Best of Thailand: A Cookbook by Grace Young (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is a short, small, not even a 100 pages kind of cookbook. But that doesn’t matter. It has recipes for mango ice cream, chicken satay, and paneng curry, so I am completely sold. Color images many of the recipes, along with things you should know.
Better Homes and Gardens Holiday Cookbook: Special Occasions: Anniversaries, Birthday Parties, Foreign Fare, Coffees, Tea, 345 Party Ideas, Buffers (1970) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This twelfth edition cookbook (first edition 1959) has the most wonderful illustrations. The color images and illustrations through out are awesome examples of vintage art at its best, but the clown on page 2 will likely haunt my dreams. The layout of this cookbook is a joy, while the text…well, it’s chipper and perky and just plain fun. I have my eye on the spice layer cake, peanut “punkins”, cooky tarts, aw heck. I want to make most things out of this cookbook (except the assortment of odd items because, you know, vintage!).
Better Homes and Gardens Homemade Cookies Cook Book (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The outdated cover doesn’t sell it to me, but it IS BH&G so you know it’s gotta be good on the inside. There are things in here I am eager to try!
Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book: Every Recipe Perfected for You in Our Test Kitchens (1976) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My edition, once owned by Joan from Saulk Village, Illinois, opens right to the blue cabinets and red floor of the BH&G test kitchen. Everyone and their mother has owned a copy of this book in some form. If you don’t have one, your kitchen is sad. It wants to be like all the other kitchens. Cave to peer pressure and get this red and white checked kitchen classic.
Better Homes and Gardens New Junior Cook (1979) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The original first edition–and the best! The peanut butter cookies and the oatmeal cookies were the first cookie recipes I ever tried to make all by myself as a kid.
Better Homes and Gardens New Junior Cook Book (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another year, new recipes. While I haven’t made anything from it so far, I’m hanging onto it because it does look good and like something the youngest could get into.
Better Homes and Gardens Oriental Cook Book (1977) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This cookbook is still a hit today. My copy still has the original price tag! I love that, don’t you? Although the title may be less than PC, this book features recipes from China, Japan, and Korea before exotic foods were widely available. In other words, you can likely use it no matter where you live.
Better Homes and Gardens Pies and Cakes (1966) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I have standards when it comes to cookbooks. But this time? I spotted the cover and snapped it up without even flipping through the inside. That’s so not like me. But, well…cake! Pie! Vintage images! Things I love and compiled by a brand name I trust when it comes to recipes.
Better Homes and Gardens Barbecue Book (1958) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m not embarrassed to admit that I bought this one on looks alone. The front cover is adorable! Still, those food images on the cover aren’t selling it. Inside, however, this one looks good. Even the pages feel nice. That sounds weird. You know what I mean, right?
Better Homes and Gardens Jiffy Cooking (1967) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I like the addition of the blue stamp “Make Ahead Recipe” for dishes that require advance prep, such as chilling or freezing. My book has a bunch of notes accompanying the Quick Clam Chowder recipe. Neat!
Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Slow Cooker Recipes (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Slow cookers are amazing things. If you thought your slow cooker was good for pot roast and soup and not much else OMG you are missing out! Hot dips are my most favorite thing. For entertaining, they cannot be beat. You can throw in ingredients and let it heat them up without having to mess with it. That comes in handy during especially large gatherings or when you have a holiday or celebration and can’t fit one more thing on the oven or stovetop. I’m hoping to try the Bacon Horseradish Dip this week, because my husband and I love horseradish. Sorry, kids. One dish dinners, desserts, and then some help round out this 400+ page cookbook.
Better Homes and Gardens Annual Recipes 2004 (2004) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Fun fun, FUN! The way this cookbook is arranged just sucked me in for the last half-an-hour. I don’t even know how it happened. One minute I was flipping through pages and the next I was reading. Okay, this book is divided by calendar months. There are special menu and themed ideas, stories, and a section in each month titled “Best of the Season” so you can use your garden produce with ease. Then there are extra bits in each chapter that may share more about something specific, such s garden tomato varieties or Prize-Tested Recipes, a contest since 1923. This edition features winners from 2004. I know I am not doing this one justice. Try it. I think you will be wonderfully surprised.
Better Homes and Gardens Annual Recipes 2013 (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Annual cookbooks get me right here *points to heart.* I also enjoy seasonally-oriented cookbooks organized by month. This BH&G cookbook combines both elements! Dorie Greenspan contributed Peanutty Fruit and Chocolate Chip Cookies (sounds interesting, right?). Triple Chocolate Cake with Malted Crunch is now on the top of my “try this now” list. Well, at least until tomorrow when I find something else I have to make! Kidding aside, there are great, approachable recipes in here.
Better Homes and Gardens Best Buffets: 110 Wonderful Recipes for Entertaining Buffet Style (Creative Cooking Library) (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“High-Society Suppers with Franks and Burgers!” reads one heading. This vintage cookbook is great! I admit to chuckling when it talks about using a lazy Susan to “lend drama” to a lunch. So funny. The recipes inside are still something usable today, for the most part. I’ve only noticed a few oddballs.
Better Homes and Gardens Best Buffets Cook Book: 60 Easy-Does-It Buffet Menus, Over 250 Party Perfect Recipes, Buffet Suggestions for All Occasions (1974) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Get a load of that cover! The hair, the clothes, the serve-ware. It’s so good. The images on the inside get even better. Buffet menus aren’t necessarily all for a large crowd. Some serve six or eight adults or two teenagers (I added that last part) so you can buffet it up anytime.
Better Homes and Gardens The Complete Guide to Bread Machine Baking: Recipes for 1 /2 and 2 lb. Loaves (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Yes, another bread cookbook. I flipped it open to the recipe for Pepperoni Pizza Loaf that makes a “zippy lunch” as a grilled cheese sandwich,” and decided I may need this book. Roasted Garlic Wheat Bread, Feta Dill Bread, and Sweet Potato Pull-Apart Rolls sealed the deal.
Better Homes and Gardens Creative Cooking Library: Lunches and Brunches (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Earmarked pages and recipe clipping placeholders abound in my copy. It’s another one of those neat older cookbooks you can’t resist flipping through. It’s also one of seven titles that are part of the BH&G Creative Cooking series.
Better Homes and Gardens Creative Cooking Library: Snacks and Refreshments: 150 Superb Snacks–Dips, Nibbles, Sandwiches,, Desserts, Teatime Tidbits (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“Pickups for after 10 PM,” reads my favorite section of the book. It’s filled with recipes for pizza, doughnuts, sandwiches, and coffee treats. FOR AFTER 10 PM! Can you even imagine? What kind of party expects entrees to keep churning out of the kitchen? You’ll appreciate this one.
Better Homes and Gardens Good Food on a Budget: Appetizing Low-Cost Menus, Tasty Recipes to Save Time and Money, How To Get the Best Food Buys (1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Mmm! For being a book published in the 1970s, the recipes sure are appealing (for the most part). You know there is always an oddball or two, but overall, this could become a heavily used cookbook in your cooler weather arsenal.
Better Homes and Gardens Home-Style Cooking (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Regional recipes and old fashioned recipes make this a fun cookbook. Just wait until you see the photos with people in them. The hair! The glasses! I love it.
Better Homes and Gardens Meals with a Foreign Flair: 100 Recipes from 18 Countries! Main Dishes, Desserts, Breads, Salads: Prize Souvenirs from around the World (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Oh, this book. Vibrant images in pure 1960s style. It is a hoot to flip through. Find directions to make a piñata, the steps to making Swedish meatballs, ja, and an assortment of (quite good) recipes from a variety of destinations.
Better Homes and Gardens Meals in Minutes: Shortcut Cooking: 180 Recipes that BEAT THE CLOCK! Mealtime, on Time, Will be No Problem! (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Eighty-four cents. That’s how much this book cost at Goldblatt’s according to the price-tag still on the cover of my copy. That’s a savings of fifteen cents over the ninety-nine cent silver retail tag! Can you imagine if cookbooks were a dollar for sixty pages of goodness? Really, it’s close to what writer’s make now. Kidding aside, If you are familiar with the rest of the Creative Cooking Library series, you will need this one too. It’s just as groovy as the rest.
Better Homes and Gardens Test Kitchen Favorites: The Ultimate Home Library – Timeless Recipes, Menus, and Entertaining Ideas (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Chapters are divvied up by the decade. Peek into the 1930s-1940s, 1950s-1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s-Present kitchens both in image and in recipe. What a neat look back! Previous BH&G test kitchen home economists staff from back to the 1940s were asked to share favorite recipes. One hundred and fifty recipe favorites are tucked inside these pages.
Better Homes and Gardens Vegetable Cook Book (1965) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Carrot recipes, oh where have you been o’ carrot recipes. That’s my ode to carrots because wow, these recipes look good. Okay, the tomato section looks great too. Jeez, most of them look delicious. How about that? I need to start using this cookbook, pronto.
Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This cookie cookbook was so beloved, 2002 brought “a brand-new, authentic facsimile of the original book.” My 1963 version has stars by several cookie recipes, and plenty of splatters and notes of my own that I have added to over the years. It’s a great cookbook and I love the “best cooky of” section in the back. Very nice.
Betty Crocker’s Cookbook for Boys & Girls: Revised Edition (1980) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You remember reading those old kid magazines and taking quizzes? Well, this cookbook opens with a kitchen-related quiz, illustrations of kitchen essentials (with labeling), kitchen math, safety tips, and a “cook’s checklist.”
Betty Crocker’s Dinner in a Dish Cookbook (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Earlier versions offer an attractive green cover. But hey, it’s what is inside that counts. And this cookbook has a fantastic mix of photos and illustrations. Vintage collections will want to add this to their hoard but, honestly, the recipes sound good! I like the “Planned-overs” section where you cook maybe a couple extra pounds of roast to create a second, different meal.
Betty Crocker’s Hostess Cookbook: Featuring more than 400 Guest-Tested Recipes: A Wealth of Ideas for Today’s Entertaining (1967) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When it comes to vintage books that are an absolute delight to flip through or read, this one springs to mind. I’m not just saying that because its spiral-bound (though that helps), but for one thing, the cover is a bold, eye-catching blue, for another thing, there are menus, and finally–there are fantastic illustrations, tips, and things to read. Someone used this copy as a reference. On page 12-13, the place-settings page, someone paper-clipped in an April 23, 1996 FOODday newpaper cutout (a Google search leads me to believe FOODday is a column from The Oregonian newspaper–which is cool since I lived in Indiana at the time!). The newspaper clipping contains instruction for how to place everything when serving food buffet-style. On page 89, there is another paperclip. This time, it’s holding a short list of recipes from this book, and the page number they appear. So great.
Betty Crocker’s International Cookbook (1980) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Over fifty countries are represented in the more than 450 recipes. There aren’t too many hard-to-find ingredients. It is organized by categories of type (such as starters or breads) and not by country.
Betty Crocker’s New Dinner For Two Cookbook (1964) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Spiral-bound! The colorful illustrations on the inside are wonderful. Yes, there are menus too. While there are plenty of recipes I’d skip, I think there is enough that sound pretty good to make this more than a cookbook you read and set aside, never to return. You can use this one. Somebody certainly used my copy. The desserts section makes that clear. I’m ready to follow in his or her footsteps.
Betty Crocker’s New Good and Easy Cook Book (1962) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Ah, the old spiral-bound cookbooks. There are charts in this cookbook and charming illustrations and images too. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner form the chapters, with each chapter focusing on different elements of the meal. Breakfast, for example, also contains a section on cereal, and what to add. My favorite? One tip suggests using “softened ice cream” instead of milk in cereal! Hilarious. Maybe you won’t use every recipe, but this is a wonderful read.
Betty Crocker’s New Outdoor Cookbook (1967) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Oh, those old spiral-bound cookbooks! The “go-with” section looks great. I have plenty earmarked to try. I’ll probably skip the “filled frankfurters” though.
Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book, Revised and Enlarged (1955) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Everyone has a Betty Crocker cookbook, I do believe. This one is mine. My copy has four recipes from the former owner penciled in on the front page and nine more listed along the back, along with her full name.
The Betty Furness Westinghouse Cook Book by Julia Kiene (1954) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another 1950s book full of mostly tasty recipes and tips. Though limited in illustrations, the intro to each chapter still makes it a fine read. The caliber of recipes will make it a keeper.
Biscotti by Lou Seibert (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Coffee, tea, or hot chocolate only benefit from the addition of biscotti. No pics of the thirty biscotti recipes, however, there are charming watercolor illustrations throughout. Chapter headings include: traditional, chocolate, regional variations, and healthful with a space for notes at the end of the book.
Biscuits, Spoonbread, and Sweet Potato Pie: 300 Recipes that Celebrate the Glories of Southern Baking — with a Generous Accompaniment of Historical Lore by Bill Neal (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Stories and recipes. Southern recipes. Don’t expect photos of recipes, and you’ll be fine. This cookbook is laid out in 1990s style, so don’t expect glossy pages and colorful images, m’kay? But these recipes stand the test of time, as they say, as long as you can overlook the country styling. I can’t wait to dig into the big section on biscuits, while the oldest wants to make cornbread. No kidding, I keep THREE packages of cornmeal in the house, one open, and two on standby.
The BLT Cookbook: Our Favorite Sandwich by Michele Anna Jordan (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The humble BLT is so simple, so easy, and yet so darn tasty. This cookbook captures those flavors in sixty BLT-related recipes! From riffs on the basic sandwich to pastas to soups and kebabs. GET IN MY BELLY.
Bon Appetit Desserts: The Cookbook for All Things Sweet and Wonderful(2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Are you a new or veteran baker? It doesn’t matter with this hefty cookbook. Although the book lacks many images, it does offer a handy dandy rating system so you know what you are in for before you begin.
Bon Appetit: Make-Ahead Meals (1982) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I love the way reminds readers to think of the freezer as “. . . . a creative tool, not merely a storehouse for leftovers. Don’t be a hoarder; keep the inventory changing. “That’s good advice. This cookbook is packed full of suggestions to make entertaining, or regular every day meal planning, simple. Images in color are few, so those in need of such a thing may need to move along. For everyone else, you’ll enjoy the range of appetizers through entrees (and accompaniments) you can make in advance.
Bon Appetit: Weekend Entertaining (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t know what it is, but I love when cookbooks offer up menus with recipes. I find it fun to read through. This cookbook is especially satisfying to read with the menu, menu options, and extra info to make it special. Add in the glorious 1990s images for a cookbook I won’t easily put down.
The Bread Bible: 300 Favorite Recipes by Beth Hensperger (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Inside cover: “Elizabeth, When I think of you, I always think of good food! Chip, Ann, Colin (Everyone). Merry Christmas and thank you for having us over. 12/21/2001. Why, oh, why did Elizabeth get rid of this one? The book opens with the science of baking bread and why we do what we do. You will learn something. Then we get into recipes. Categories include white bread, egg breads, country hearth breads, rolls, picnic breads, coffee cakes, biscuits and soda breads, muffins, and bread machine recipes. I likely missed a category or two. With 300 recipes, it’s a hefty book. No images but please don’t let that hold you back. You can do this, especially with the clear instructions.
The Bread Lover’s Bread Machine Cookbook: A Master Baker’s 300 Favorite Recipes for Perfect-Every-Time Bread-From Every Kind of Machine by Beth Hensperger (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
From the typical white bread to lesser known varieties (like paximadia), your bread machine will be the hardest worker in your kitchen. No images, but there are tips to guide you.
The Bread Machine Cookbook by Donna Rathmell German (1991) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Christmas. My first Christmas after I moved away and returned home for the holiday. I had my mom’s old bread maker so she gave me this wonderful book to go with it. No pics, no illustrations, nothing fancy at all, except darn good bread.
The Bread Machine Cookbook IV: Whole Grains and Natural Sugars by Donna Rathmell German (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When something works, like these cookbooks, you better believe I get all I can. I may not use this one as much as the original (above) but it still sees action.
The Bread Machine Cookbook V: Favorite Recipes from 100 Kitchens by Donna Rathmell German (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There is no denying I have a bread obsession. Now that I have to write out each one of this woman’s cookbooks, I can’t help but chuckle. But now that I see there are a few more she wrote that I don’t have…well, I feel like I need to back away slowly from the Internet right now.
Breakfast with Friends: Seasonal Menus to Celebrate the Morning by Elizabeth Alston (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m a sucker for a cookbook with menus. I don’t even know why. It isn’t like I use them, but I love to read through them. This cookbook has a great layout. There are menu plans, shopping list plans, and a game plan for what you need to do. No images but there are sweet illustrations. Try to find one with the book jacket. It’s a delightful cover.
Brittles, Barks, and Bonbons: Delicious Recipes for Quick and Easy Candy by Charity Ferreira (2004) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
See how serious I am about making candy? Candy, candy, candy. I’m as serious as a bowl of bonbons. These recipes look so quick, I may need to work at them over the winter holiday.
Burt Wolf’s Table by Burt Wolf (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
CNN, the Travel Channel, PBS…Burt Wolf reached a lot of homes with his TV productions. The book jacket states his TV reports reached an international audience of 200,000,000 people. You don’t get to a place like that with shoddy recipes. This is a great companion book to the PBS shows.
Cake Love: How To Bake Cakes from Scratch by Warren Brown (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
If you read anything about Red Velvet cake, Warren Brown’s name pops up quite a bit. The lawyer-turned-entrepreneur baker was known for his cakes and, for those who didn’t browse old cake-related forums and websites, you may better know him as the host of Sugar Rush, a 2005-2007 Food Network program. I wanted his cookbook for so long. The last (and original) brick-and-mortar CakeLove location closed in December 2015 so Warren could concentrate on CakeLove in a Jar. My mom gifted me a copy last year for Christmas and it’s even signed!
Cake Pops: Holidays by Bakerella by Angie Dudley (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I once attended a wedding with the most perfect cake balls. That wedding made me a cake ball convert. Finding a cookbook with a shade under 100 pages featuring cake pops, cake pops, and more cake pop recipes makes my heart thrill just a tense.
A Campbell Cookbook: Cooking with Soup: 608 Skillet Dishes, Casseroles, Stews, Sauces, Gravies, Dips, Soup Mates, and Garnishes (1968–mine lacks year info) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Since I don’t typically use much in the way of canned soups, I’m hanging onto this cookbook because it was my grandma’s and has the occasional slip of paper saving places and her checkmarks. Yes, even “try” written next to a few recipes in her loopy script. It’s just a neat little illustrated book and a reminder of grandma.
A Campbell Cookbook: Most for the Money Main Dishes (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t use a lot of canned soup and things. But this cookbook is 1. spiral-bound (which you know I love) and 2. still handy for those winter days when the roads are bad and you need something for dinner.
The Candy Cookbook by Carol Bloom (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Some days, you just need a change. I keep saying I’m going to tackle more candy. This year. This year! How can I not when I have a book like this full of all the things I love to eat?
Championship BBQ Secrets for Real Smoked Food by Karen Putman and Judith Fertig (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Neighbor Steve iss the BBQ master. We are states away from his neighborhood now, but he is still definitely the master., When he would fire up his grill, the clouds parted, the angels sang, and every dog in the neighborhood incessantly drooled. We don’t get into smoked food too much. Until Steve, we didn’t know how good it could be. While we may never be at the same smoking level as Steve, at least we have a starting point with this cookbook. More than meat, you’ll find an astonishing amount of things you can slow-smoke.
The Chez Piggy Cookbook: Recipes from the Celebrated Restaurant and Bakery (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Five days before his 58th birthday, two months before the restaurant’s 24th anniversary, and two weeks after the party for regular customers, (former Lovin’ Spoonful guitarist) Zalman Yanovsky passed away. These are recipes compiled from the Chez Piggy Restaurant and Bakery in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. His daughter took the reins after his passing, and it’s still open today. Guess what’s on my “must visit” list?
Chinese Cooking by Lalita Ahmed (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Pot Sticker Dumplings, Pork and Shrimp Chow Mein, and my favorite: Sweet and Sour Pork (we sub in chicken). This book is easy to follow and delicious. We’ve used it for over a decade.
Chocolate Cookbook: Over 200 Delectable Chocolate Recipes from Apricot Fudge to Zuppa Inglese by Juliette Elkon (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I own the paperback version and it’s the kind of size you need a cookbook holder to use, as it will not stay open on its own. But it is the kind of book you will use. Minimal illustrations and text, just chocolate recipe after smooth, sweet chocolate recipe.
Chocolate: An Illustrated History by Marcia and Frederic Morton (1986) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
It’s not a cookbook, but since I keep this chocolate history book with them, I’m adding it here. Learn the interesting history of chocolate through words and images.
Chocolate Fantasies (2001) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Chocolate fans might enjoy this cookbook and its adaptations of Southern Living recipes. Beverages, breads, chilled or frozen desserts, cookies, cakes, cheesecakes — it’s a tempting cookbook. Sparse illustrations, no images, but I don’t even mind.
Classic African: Authentic Recipes from an Ancient Cuisine (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The sure way to get our oldest son in the kitchen is to show him a different type of ethnic food. Then, he will chop, mince, and saute his little heart out. Vegetable Soup with Coconut, Mandazi, and Kofta Curry on on my list. Images accompany the recipes and, though it’s not a giant book, it does look like a great one.
Classic Baking by Love Food Editors/Angela Drake (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
At first glance, this cookbook design might seem to have so much going on, it turns you off. But wait! That would be a crying shame. With Coconut Bars and Apple Fritters and Crown Loaf, this is a cookbook that’s just enough of a step away from the usual, you might find you need this one too. Color images accompany each recipe.
Classic Canadian Cooking: Menus for the Seasons by Elizabeth Baird (1974) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“Merry Christmas! Happy Cooking! The Robertson’s, 1986” reads the title page inscription. Why the Robertson’s ditched this cookbook, I don’t know. My mom gifted me this one years ago after I took a trip to Canada for the Stratford Shakespeare Festival (now called the Stratford Festival). I mean, the author was the food editor of Canadian Living magazine for years, has authored or edited other cookbooks, and knows her stuff when it comes to Canadian food. You can find her revised edition here.
Classic French Cooking (Time Life Foods of the World series) by Craig Claiborne and Pierre Franey (1970) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
If you own this book, turn to page 84 and laugh. Oh, that picture doesn’t sell it! Kidding aside, this is part essay and part recipe book. Cookbook readers, do add it to your list. French cooking enthusiasts, you can do the same.
The Classic Italian Cookbook: The Art of Italian Cooking and the Italian Art of Eating by Marcella Hazan (1976) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is a hefty book, which is rather amazing when you consider the fact that there aren’t any images and very few illustrations. While you mule that over a moment, consider the over 450 pages of careful instructions on everything from how to make pasta to buying and prepping vegetables. Images? Bah! You won’t even miss them. Italian dishes include the Italian name and the English name.
Collection of Recipes: A Collection of Home and Quantity Size Recipes Gathered over a 64 Year Acceptance Period by Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Nutrition and Dietetics (1984) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There are almost 700 pages in this book. It is HUMONGOUS! It’s also unlike any other cookbook I own. It is amazing. Each recipe offers up the typical portion plus a portion that serves forty-eight or bakes up three loaves or eight pies and how to dole it out. The back of the book possesses a dazzling number of names–student dietitian or dietetic interns beginning in 1919! All in all, it’s one heck of a resource.
The Complete Book of Breads by Jr. Bernard Clayton (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When I realized that Bernard was a Hoosier (like me!) and lived in Bloomington, IN (not far!), I eagerly Googled him. Would it be possible to meet him? Drat! Drat! Drat! He passed away in 2011 at the age of 94. 94! You can read Bernard Clayton, Jr.’s New York Times Obit here. My cookbook has an inscription dated 2/14/1974: “For ‘Jinia–the bread in my life! Rog.” She used this book too, leaving behind notes and slips of paper marking various recipes. It’s one of my all-time favorite bread books.
The Complete Bread Cookbook by Ted Kaufman (1969) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Okay, so the steps in this cookbook aren’t listed so much as they are in paragraphs. While that’s not easy to follow, the bread recipes in this book sound so good, I can’t help but forgive the wonky layout.
The Complete Guide to Country Cooking (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This was the first cookbook I ever REALLY used. And it shows. I’ve had it for the past twenty years. Recipes are shoved between pages, my notes are jotted on actual recipes, and the book can hardly close. It’s a little embarrassing, but that’s okay. This book is where I have found our favorite recipes.
The Complete American-Jewish Cookbook: Over 3500 Tested Kosher Recipes–and They Taste Good! In Accordance With the Jewish Dietary Laws by Anne London and Bertha Kahn Bishov (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m not Jewish so I don’t have a Bubbe for comparison, but you know I do like comparing recipes to each other, so I needed this book. It is hefty! There are 602 pages without the index. The intro offers a glossary of helpful Yiddish terms. Really, it’s just chock full of things I want to make.
The Complete Leafy Greens Cookbook: 67 Leafy Greens and 250 Recipes by Susan Sampson (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Wait! Stop right there! Don’t dismiss this title because it mentions greens. This cookbook is worth your time. Maybe you don’t like ramps or maybe you don’t even know what komatsuna is (heirloom cabbage)–but this cookbook is divided by the type of green veggie. Flip through and find new ways to cook ‘yer faves.
Completely Cheese: The Cheeselover’s Companion by Anita May Pearl (1979) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Some days you have all the luck. I happened upon this gem of a cookbook while browsing around an antique shop. Learn the world history of cheese, read and view the images of how cheese is made, understand cheese classification, wine pairing, and then there are even recipes. Add in a survey of the world’s cheeses and a guide on how to make your own cheese, and we’ve barely scratched the surface. Cheese enthusiasts need this one.
Cookie Cookery By John J. Zenker and Hazel G. Zenker (1969) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I wish I knew what the book jacket looked like. I know if it were more attractive than the plain tan cover I would have used it by now. After all, it’s nothing but cookies, cookies, and more cookies. The layout is unusual and takes a little getting used to which is a part of its charm.
Cooking For Young Homemakers – Culinary Arts Institute Encyclopedic Cookbook (1962) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Sixteen sections, 974 pages, oodles of images, and a sixty-six page index make this a heavy, thick book full of real scratch-made recipes. I don’t even know what youngberries are, but there is a recipe for youngberry pie and elderberry and goodberry and loganberry pie.
Cooking From Quilt Country: Hearty Recipes from Amish and Mennonite Kitchens by Marsha Adams (1980) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Marsha Adams spent more than a year in the Amish and Mennonite communities and learned these recipes from the source. This cookbook is a companion book to the 13 of 26 part PBS series Amish Cooking from Quilt Country that aired from 1989-1990. There were twenty-six shows in all. I’m so sorry to read that she passed away back in 2011 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. I didn’t know she was a Hoosier. I feel like I’ve missed out once again. If only I had read the author blurb in the back sooner!
Cooking Jewish: 532 Great Recipes from the Rabinowitz Family by Judy Bart Kancigor (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Anyone who has ever loved a good family cookbook will be head-over-heels happy with this 656 page volume. Anecdotes and family photos make this cookbook one to be treasured.
The Cooking of Singapore: Great Dishes from Asia’s Culinary Crossroads by Chris Yeo and Joyce Jue (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I couldn’t pass this cookbook up! Singapore? What do I know about Singapore cooking? Nothing. But this book will do it! Chris Yeo is the owner of Straits Restaurants + Lounge and SINO Restaurants + Lounge. The recipes in this book have appeared in his restaurants. Check out the ingredient translations to make shopping easy. This book is well done.
Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurants: The Collection: Volume 2: Celebration: Recipes from Cooper’s Hawk Family and Friends (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is a cookbook for the Cooper’s Hawk Wine Club members. I found my copy at Goodwill — and am I ever glad I did. I’m familiar with Cooper’s Hawk. They had a location at Southlake Mall in Merrillville, Indiana. I’m food snobby enough to bypass any restaurant part of a mall (unless it’s the kind of mall with Sak’s or Tiffany’s in there somewhere, so I’d expect a bump up in food level). But, this cookbook isn’t solely made of recipes from the restaurant. So, that hardly even matters. Recipes from restaurant-owning chefs and Cooper’s Hawk chefs are included, as well as more than thirty pages about wine. Recipes offer up a Cooper’s Hawk wine pairing suggestion, with detail about the wine, which should be easy to translate to a wine brand available in your area.
Corked & Forked: Four Seasons of Eats and Drinks by Keith Wallace (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m mostly an adult. After so many trips to Indiana wineries while I was travel writing around my state, I feel like I should know more about wine. But it doesn’t seem to matter how many wineries I have visited, it’s in one ear and out the other. Books that tell me what to pair with what are always a win to me, like this one. This book makes meal planning easy with its seasonal divisions and specific menus. For example, in the fall, there are recipes for a savory brunch, for Thanksgiving, an autumn dinner party, a Sunday supper, and one labeled “simple, healthy, and hearty.” Whomever had my copy wrote out an entire menu for a large Saturday and Sunday summery gathering using only this book.
Country Cake: A Homestyle Treasury by Lisa Yockelson (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What a nice read. The author talkes about her love of cake plates and I just want to poke around in her kitchen for a bit, ya know? This is another of those short, squat cookbooks. Nope, no images, but there are some country illustrations here and there. I love having a cake sitting on the counter, what my husband calls, “Breakfast cake,” because he eats a slice for breakfast every morning. I’m always on the search for good, new recipes, and this cookbook looks promising.
The County Fair Cookbook: Yankee Johnnycakes, Tater Pigs, Shoofly Pie, & 200 More Recipes from America’s Best Country Cooks by Lyn Stallworth and Rod Kennedy (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The taste of the fair in your home! Finally, you don’t have to wait until the county fair rolls around to get your fill of fair food. Fairs from all fifty states and even Canada, share popular recipes. You will read, re-read, and chuckle along with some of the stories and the quirkier of the recipes.
Cowboy Poetry Cookbook: Menus and Verse for Western Celebrations by Cyd McMullen and Anne Wallace McMullen (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A cookbook with cowboys and poetry? That’s so different and unusual, I had to have it. This cookbook seemed like something I could get the youngest to flip through and choose something to cook out of it. Two sisters-in-law who owned a ranch in Elko, Nevada gathered together these recipes. No images here, but plenty of cowboy illustrations add pep.
Creative Sourdough Cooking by Rose Cantrell (1988) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is the cutest little cookbook. It’s hardly bigger than those romance novels you find at the airport, it has sourdough recipes for all manner of things–even cakes.
Creole Flavors: Recipes for Marinades, Rubs, Sauces, and Spices by Kevin Graham (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Last winter, I started a “cook a specific cuisine for the week” kind of thing. I picked up this book to broaden our horizons. The intro offers some neat little tidbits. As a whole, this is one book I can’t wait to use.
Culinary Arts Institute Encyclopedic Cookbook (New, Revised Edition, 1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The snappy red cover has the table of contents printed right on them. Now that’s a great idea! This is an excellent read. Why, you’ll finally know how to prepare pigeon, possum (roasted or stuffed, and pig knuckles. Don’t worry. There are plenty of recognizable things too. My copy included a letterhead tucked inside from Forest Park High School in Ferdinand, IN (I tiny, tiny town I have visited!), a magazine clipping, and a couple of handwritten recipes.
Culinary Arts Institute Mexican Cookbook: Traditional Recipes Tested for Today’s Kitchens (1976) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
It’s a fiesta up in here! My post-it notes are taking over this cookbook. Aztec Patties? Mexican Rice, Cumin Rice, jeez, I want to try them all. Clear and easy-to-follow recipes are just the icing on the conchas.
Cupcakes by Susanna Tee (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The inscription inside reads, “Mandy, Thank you for the yummy, beautiful cupcakes! 🙂 Good luck in your future bakery business! Love, the Froehlichs.” I hope Mandy discarded this book because she already achieved her dream of owning a bakery, and not because she gave up. Color images accompany every cupcake recipe. I have my eye on the Coconut Cherry Cupcakes and the Tropical Pineapple Cupcakes with Citrus Cream Frosting. Doesn’t that sound good?
The Curry Book by Laxmi Khurana, Asha Naran, and Shelina Jetha (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My cookbook has an inscription: “To Jo, This is just a little present to remind you or your 1st balti at The Castle Balti in Warwick! Thought you could have a go at making your own!! I’m so glad you had such a great time in Endland (especially in Pinley, even if it is a bit on the small side!). Make sure you keep in touch and come back and visit. Take care, Love Caroline.” I don’t know when Jo visited England. Caroline didn’t date the thing! The book was published in 1996 though. What’s neat, is that not only does The Castle Balti in Warwick still exists, Balti is still on their menu with this description: “Cooked with fresh onion, tomato, peppers & coriander, served in a metal wok which is called a Balti. Best eaten with a nan bread and your fingers.” Jo seems to have at least saved pages in this book with Post-It notes. I like to think she used it often to remind her of a great trip.
“D” and “E” Cookbooks
The Dairy Good Cookbook: Everyday Comfort Food from America’s Dairy Farm Families (2015) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Two days ago, my husband walked in the door and surprised me with good cheese. He said, “I was going to get you flowers, but I thought you’d like cheese more.” I paused — and realized he was right. That’s a good man right there. Now you know my love for dairy. I want to make everything from this book. I started using Post-It Notes to mark recipes but realized I was highlighting everything.
A Day in an Amish Kitchen (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
After I checked it out at the library a jillion times, my husband surprised me with it for Christmas one year. It’s just a fun read. I’ve made things from this cookbook and it’s good. Simple, yes, but good. Just keep an eye out before you start a cookie recipe. Many of them are obviously geared toward a large Amish family. One recipe for sorghum cookies takes 18 cups of flour! Amish folks share family stories and letters. See why I checked it out so many times?
Desserts (The Best of Martha Stewart Living): Our Favorite Recipes for Every Season and Every Occasion by Martha Stewart Living Magazine (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Beautiful recipes in a slim volume. I can’t wait to make something from this cookbook, starting with the Devil’s Food Cake or the Frozen “Tiramisu.”
Earth Eats: Real Food Green Living by Annie Corrigan with Daniel Orr (2017) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Bloomington, Indiana locals know Daniel as the owner of FARMBloomington, a farm-to-table restaurant and a cookbook author, and Annie as the (now former) host of the Earth Eats radio show through WFIU. Fresh food kind of folks will enjoy this feast for the eyes.
Elizabeth Alston’s Best Baking: 80 Recipes for Angel Food Cakes, Chiffon Cakes, Coffee Cakes, Pound Cakes, Tea Breads, and Their Accompaniments (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m such a fan of Elizabeth Alston’s work, that I fairly giggled with glee as I grabbed this cookbook off the shelf at a used cookbook store (and our new favorite bookstore). Zero images and scant illustrations may leave beginners befuddled, but for the rest of us, mmm mmm mmm! Elizabeth includes a note or two about each recipe, but it’s not where you would expect to find it. She added her thoughts or advice just after the ingredients and before the instructions. If you love to bake, give Elizabeth’s wonderful recipes a try.
El Paso Chile Company’s Texas Border Cookbook by W. Park Kerr and Norma Kerr (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You know all those things you love to order at Tex-Mex or Mexican restaurants? Yep, it’s in here. In fact, there are more than 150 recipes in this book. I don’t even know where to begin.
The Encyclopedia of Herbs, Spices, & Flavorings: A Cook’s Compendeum (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
DK books for kids are the best things ever. How about a DK book for grown ups? This Food & Wine Special Selection offers up info on more than 200 herbs, spices, aromatics, essences, edible flowers and leaves, vinegars, oils, dairy products, teas, and coffees. Each page shares important info like the history, what it’s good with, how it forms and its other names. Then there are cooking tips and a recipe. That’s on each page. You can hunker down with that one for awhile.
Every Day’s a Party: Louisiana Recipes For Celebrating With Family And Friends by Emeril Lagasse (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When I was young, I worked at a Linens N’ Things (Greenwood, IN, yo). A cookware display included a short (too short) video that played Emeril on repeat. All day. Bam! The recipes do look good (even if I will never like crawfish).
The Family Circle Cookbook: More than 2,000 Recipes (1974) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Illustrations win me over every time. Weighty and full of goodness, I love reading through this cookbook. One of the writers, Jean Anderson, won multiple awards for her cookbooks over the years. I think she seems fun. I feel like I need to go back and browse through those dessert recipes again. Sweet treats are calling my name.
Family Circle Quick Menu Cookbook by Jean Hewitt (1978) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Every time I think I’m going to just do a quick flip-through and then move on to something I haven’t read before…but this cookbook is so darn neat. Divided by the seasons, this book presents a menu, the items you need to make it all, your work plan (how you will tackle the recipes), and the recipes. With seventy-five different menus, you might start to welcome each season’s change with more gusto than before. Snag one with the book jacket.
The Family Cookbook: Italian by Charlotte Adams and Alvin Kerr, Special Consultant: James Beard (1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Recipe titles are in Italian and English. Given the year, it’s no surprise that there aren’t many images in this one. There are, however, excellent illustrations here and there to add a little something. Molded Ice Cream, Neapolitan Honey Balls, and the Antipasto Sandwich (WOW) beg me to make them. I’m thinking that sandwich needs to be a “must make” for a lazy weekend dinner or a picnic next summer! This cookbook looks wonderful and I can’t wait to begin.
Family Living: Our Best Cookbook Collection Book 2: 910 Recipes for Brunches, Suppers, Snacks, Side Dishes, Breads & Muffins, Party Foods, Chocolate, Cookies, Desserts, and Food Gifts (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Ignore the title. Pretend it doesn’t even exist. This is not a cookbook with an even, balanced collection of recipes. It’s not even cute. Sorry, not sorry. What is it, then? It’s really more of a cookbook featuring desserts, snacks, and party kind of foods. That’s why I hold onto this one and why you might want to too.
Fannie Flagg’s Original Whistle Stop Cafe Cookbook: Featuring Fried Green Tomatoes, Southern Barbecue, Banana Split Cake, and More Than 150 Other Great Recipes by Fannie Flagg (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You know the film Fried Green Tomatoes? Well, Fannie Flagg wrote the book and screenplay, basing the cafe off of one from her hometown. After people flooded her with letters asking for recipes, she obliged in the form of this book. Old-fashioned Southern cookin’ and stories intertwined. A classic.
Farm Journal Cooking For Company: More Than 900 Extra-Delicious Recipes and Menus plus “Hostess How-to”–Ideas for Entertaining, Party Favors, Food Garnishes, Serving a Crowd (1968) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Whew! That’s a mouthful. If you can’t resist a Farm Journal cookbook, get ready to add one more to your cookbook shelf. You need this one!
FARM JOURNAL’S COUNTRY COOKBOOK by Nell B. Nichols (1959) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Ah, these Farm Journal cookbooks are the best. The story goes that the readers of the Farmer’s Wife magazine (a subset of the Farmer’s Journal) kept writing and begging for lost recipes or for the authors to publish a cookbook. So, they did. This is another book where you want to find a copy with the book jacket. Vintage charm.
Farm Journal’s Homemade Breads: 250 Naturally Good Recipes (1985) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Bread + Butter = True Love Always. I love to eat bread so, naturally, I love to make bread. Fresh bread, warm from the oven, is such a welcoming, comforting thing. This book includes illustrations to help you figure out how to form some of the breads. There are also doughnuts, griddle cakes (like pancakes), rolls, quick breads, and all manner of yeast breads.
Farm Journal’s Special Edition Country Cookbook: More Than 1000 Tested Recipes (1959) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My version has a green soft cover with a coconut and strawberry cake on the front. The inside back flap contains a list of favorite recipes from the previous owner (with page numbers). The pages are soft with use. I can’t wait to add my own stamp to this one.
Farm Journal’s Timesaving Country Cookbook: 1000 Recipes and Menus with that Wonderful Home-Cooked Taste (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Okay, so I don’t do a lot of “open a can” or “grab a box” cooking. This cookbook has a bit of that. But at least there are scratch-made cake recipes inside. I love the way this cookbook reads. The menus are so fun!
Favorite Recipes from Great Midwest Cooks by Midwest Living (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Library discards are wonderful things, especially when a book finds its way into my hands that I may not have found otherwise. Folks from across the Midwest share stories about their business and favorite recipes so you can play along at home.
A Feast of Scotland by Janet Warren (1979) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What do I know about Scottish cooking? What do I know about Scottish cooking? I’ll tell you. Absolutely nothing. But now I can learn all about it! There’s a dash of history and plenty of recipes with a few images (color) here and there too.
Five Roses: A Guide to Good Cooking (1983) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Want to know what’s weird? I added “Five Roses” to my cookbook list of wants a month ago. I had no idea my cookbook was from “Five Roses,” because the cover doesn’t say “Five Roses” on it! The side is binder-style so it lacks text. I’m thrilled. Those Canadian cookbooks cover a span of years. What I find interesting, especially given its 1983 printing, is that the measurements are offered in cups/measuring spoons and by weight! Color images, though few, offer up a hint of what to expect. You’ll even find a couple of pages devoted to “Deep Fat Frying!” I can’t wait to use this book.
Fix-It and Enjoy-It Cookbook: All-Purpose, Welcome-Home Recipes by Phyllis Pellman Good (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Think of this like a community cookbook, only with nice binding and a professional layout. The recipes include the name, town or city, and state of the author. I always find it fun to see where a recipe came from, don’t you? If you don’t expect a fancy book, images, or the kind of book for impressive entertaining, then you will find yourself entirely satisfied with this Fix-It cookbook.
Fondue: Great Food To Dip, Dunk, Savor, And Swirl by Rick Rodgers (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We “fondue” every month or two and go all out with heaps of different dippers. I wanted some new fondue recipes. This book will deliver! Cheese, Dessert, Fried, and Asian Hot Pot. Yes, those are the basic categories with plenty of recipes to keep you busy.
The Fondue Bible: the 200 Best Recipes by Ilana Simon (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We fondue! Do you? We love it. Fondue makes such a different and fun lunch or dinner. I especially love to fondue when the kids have a friend over. I include a TON of different dippers of all kinds so even the more picky eaters will still find something to like. This cookbook even includes dessert fondues. Yeah, I need to get on that.
Food & Wine 2009 Annual Cookbook (2009) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
More than 700 recipes compose this cookbook. The recipes are pulled from a full year’s worth of Food & Wine Magazine. This year’s edition put the focus on fresh ingredients over the exotic.
Food & Wine 2010 Annual Cookbook: Over 600 Amazing Recipes (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another year, another hardcover cookbook of Food & Wine recipes pulled straight from the page of the 2009 magazines. In the intro, the editors (Dana Cowin, F&W mag Editor-in-Chef and Kate Heddings, F&W cookbook editor) recall that January 2009 had a rise in home cooking, that the recipes were inspired from Italian restaurants, that home cooks also wanted to know wine pairings, and the magazine delivered. When F&W turned to Twitter for Americanized ethnic dish ideas, they printed those too (bonus: the recipes are from Joanne Chang). Add in a handful of menus (LOVE those) and you’ve got a doable cookbook in your hands.
Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2013 (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I love these cookbooks. I just LOVE these cookbooks! Okay, so I admit I don’t make ALL the things from here (and, honestly, I probably never will) because some are just…foofy. However. It’s a good read and a nice reference. If you feel like making something a step up from the usual, you won’t go wrong with this cookbook. As Goldilocks would say, “It’s just right.” I’m entranced by the cakes, cookies, and more chapter. Wow.
Food and Wine Annual Cookbook 2014 (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another year of tasty recipes, beautiful images to browse, and lots to try! If you aren’t familiar with these books, you have got to seek one out. Great reading and well-known chefs.
Food Writer’s Favorites: Cookies Edited (1991) by Barbara Gibbs Ostmann and Jane Baker (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You mean there is a cookbook that takes blurbs from food writers who work for newspapers across the country, has them share their favorite, and compiles them into one single book about cookies? Yes, and it is as gratifying as it sounds.
From Farm Journal’s Famous Country Cookbook Hospitality Cooking: Complete Meals for Any Occasion (1959, 1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Farm Journal cookbooks remind me of my former neighbor Donna. I’d head over to fix whatever her latest computer issue was, and sometimes hang out in the kitchen afterward, flipping through her cookbooks, while another neighbor, Mary, would sometimes pop in too. Donna kept her Farm Journal cookbooks on top of her refrigerator because she used them the most. It’s been three years since she passed, and I still can’t believe she’s gone.
Food for Thought: An Indiana Harvest (2012) by David Hoppe (AMAZON) (EBAY)
After speaking at a large conference about small town travel in Bloomington, Indiana several years ago, a kind soul pressed this book into my hands. It’s full of the faces and stories who have made an impact on food in the state and why.
Food Trucks: Dispatches and Recipes from the Best Kitchens on Wheels (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m fascinated by the food truck idea. Do ya think I could put a bakery in one? It looks like the answer is a “probably.” Read stories of food truck owners from everywhere and prepare to get excited because…the owners share recipes! This isn’t just sandwiches. There are crepes and soups, queso and pie. Seriously, it’s all manner of things.
A Fresh Taste of Italy: 250 Authentic Recipes, Undiscovered Dishes, and New Flavors for Every Day (1997) by Michele Scicolone (AMAZON) (EBAY)
She’s a food writer, her husband is a wine consultant. Yes, that’s a good match. This cookbook had me sold with the Apples in White Wine with Rum Cream recipe. We always have a bunch of apples in the house (I don’t even travel without an apple in the car), and this recipe sounds different and good. Funny, the author mentions how Italians aren’t huge on desserts, and either is my Italian-Polish dad. Guess that gene skipped me! Our youngest caught sight of the cover and exclaimed, “Purple pasta!” so it snagged his interest too.
The Frugal Gourmet Celebrates Christmas (1991) by Jeff Smith(AMAZON) (EBAY)
Ex-library copies make me sad. No notes! No recipes! Usually no splatters either. But I DO like the hard cover and cheapo prices. I think the bit about the Sesame Cookies is interesting enough to make me want to try them.
The Frugal Gourmet Cooks American (1987) by Jeff Smith(AMAZON) (EBAY)
Neat and tidy, the only reminder of its former are a small stack of “Recipes…From Around the World” booklets tucked into the same page as the Deep Dish Pizza. I’m taking it as a nod to give the pizza a try.
The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Three Ancient Cuisines: China, Greece, and Rome: Delicious Recipes from the Cultures that Most Influenced Western Cooking by Jeff Smith (1989) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Four hundred recipes and a boatload of tips compose another mouth-watering selection of mostly approachable recipes. I probably won’t indulge in the pasta with lamb intestines but I am all about Ming’s Chicken Salad, Moussaka, and Pork Shu-Mei.
The Frugal Gourmet Cooks with Wine by Jeff Smith (1986) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Handwritten recipes are tucked between pages of my copy. I think someone copied them down as his show was airing. Over 400 recipes will help you get your feet wet when it comes to cooking with wine and figuring out how to pair it with food. You’ll be a pro in no time.
The Frugal Gourmet on Our Immigrant Ancestors: Recipes You Should Have Gotten from Your Grandmother by Jeff Smith (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Some cookbooks dumb things down. Not this one. Yes, the steps are easy to follow but the ingredients are just like great grandma used to make. It’s a good read and full of nice looking recipes.
The Frugal Gourmet Cooks Italian: Recipes from the New and Old Worlds, Simplified for the American Kitchen: More than 350 Italian Recipes–Companion to the All-New Television Series by Jeff Smith (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
These are simple recipes. Sometimes it may seem as though the recipe is long but Jeff likes to offer up tips so you don’t get lost. Lots of details regarding food in Italy add to the cookbook reading extravaganza.
The Frugal Gourmet: More Than 400 Recipes from a Rich Assortment of International Cuisines, Together with Invaluable Cooking Tips and Techniques–from the National Public Television Series Produced by WTTW in Chicago by Jeff Smith (1984) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
That could be the longest title and subtitle ever. Check the table of contents for the show number and the recipes feature in the show to get crack-a-lackin’. There’s no time to waste!
The Frugal Gourmet Keeps the Feast: Past, Present, and Future (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I admit it. I got this cookbook because I have almost all of his others. This one has a biblical tone, referencing Christian theology in relation to food in “the Frug’s” easy reading style.
Fruitful: Four Seasons of Fresh Fruit Recipes by Brian Nicholson and Sarah Huck (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
As much as I love vintage cookbooks, it’s also hard for me to pass up a pretty cookbook. Fruitful is a beautiful book. I received this book as a review copy and mostly drool over the gorgeous full-color images inside. This cookbook is also organized by the seasons–with a twist. Spring is paired with early summer while High Summer, Autumn, and Putting Up for Winter are stand-alone sections. It works. You get an idea of what fruits will be featured for what season so, until you have the book memorized, you know where to turn based on what you have.
Good Housekeeping Brownies!: Favorite Recipes for Brownies, Blondies, & Bar Cookies (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The size and look of this book is just right. My family is obsessed with brownies. I thought that making a batch of my world famous brownies every couple days while we were moving would cure them. Nope. Not even. Up your brownie and bar cookies range with Good Housekeeping. Do note, there is not an imagine associated with each one but, hey, it’s bar cookies. You can bake bar cookies!
The Good Housekeeping Cookbook (1944) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
1944. One hundred fifty-five thousand troops landed on the beaches of Normandy. Paris was liberated that August while France would be free by the end of the year. Meat rations would end. Glenn Miller would be reported missing. It was a year full of battles and war talk. The previous owner, Betty, wrote her name across the top of the book. Did she buy it during 1944? Did it help see her through a hard year? Did her family come out okay? Wouldn’t you just love to know? This cookbook is all about “good, plain cooking.” No, really. That’s what the preface says. Yes, it delivers.
The Good Housekeeping Cookbook (1963): A Completely New and Revised Edition of America’s Favorite Cookbook–Used by More Than One Million Women: Over 3,500 Thousand Recipes, Each Kitchen-Tested by the Good Housekeeping Institute (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Menus, menus galore. This cookbook lays out menus for families, for entertaining, cooking for two, and meals on the cheap. That alone makes it a fun read. At 739 pages, without including the index, you better believe there is more to keep you occupied. If you can find a copy with the book jacket, that’s the route to go.
Good Old-Fashioned Cakes: More than 70 Classic Cake Recipes–Updated for Today’s Bakers by Susan Kosoff (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I believe this was a cookbook castoff from my mom–but I like this one. The recipes are clearly written with plenty of white-space. While you won’t find images here, you will find a few tips and oodles of traditional cake flavors and frostings you can trust.
Gourmet: Five Ingredients: More than 175 Easy Recipes for Every Day (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What? Me? Obsessed with anything Ruth Riechl was involved with? Huh? Fine. Fine, I admit it. But, five ingredients! I need it, right? Right! This is Gourmet, so expect some froufy things perfect for company or nights when your family is living during through a pandemic and dresses up a couple times a month for a fancy meal at home, just for something interesting. Yes, this cookbook is great for such things.
Gourmet Today: More than 1000 All-New Recipes for the Contemporary Kitchen by Ruth Reichl (2009) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I am going to gloss over my obsession with cookbooks Ruth Reichl had a hand in. This is a giant cookbook. I’m afraid that if I tell you it is over 700 pages long, that you become too intimidated and never bother to check it out. Gourmet had plenty of foofy recipes, I don’t mind admitting that. But, when you want something different or fancy or something impressive, Gourmet is where to go. Sidebar call-outs include must-know info on anything from seasonings to vegetables to instructions on how to do something (like “the art of stir fry.”)
Great Cookies: Secrets to Sensational Sweets by Carole Walter (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Each week means cookie baking. Multiple times. We are snackers and dessert eaters. Our youngest son literally thought he had a second dessert stomach because I had said it so many times. He thought I meant it! I love that. Don’t worry, don’t worry. We are active people. It doesn’t mean we sit and eat three dozen cookies in one sitting, but with snacks, packed lunches, after school activities, and sharing with neighbors…cookies don’t last. This cookbook makes me glad! Recipes share what you need, how long it takes, and how difficult the recipe will be, as well as storage advice and the “cookie characteristics.” You know, if it travels well or has a long shelf life. I don’t know where to begin and either will you!
Great Pies & Tarts by Carole Walter: Over 150 Recipes to Bake, Share, and Enjoy: Featuring the Invaluable Pie-Making Primer (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Extended tips and tricks to craft the perfect pie offer easy-to follow advice. That said, folks who can’t follow text but rely on images to guide them through a new process will find this book to be lacking. But, oh, for those of us who can handle it, there is so much information here and so many ways to up your pie level.
The Greatest Ever Chocolate Cookbook by Juliette Elkon Hamelecourt (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My cookbook reads “Juliette Elkon” not Juliette Elkon Hamelecourt but I assume maybe a marriage took place? Satisfy your chocolate craving with this fine assortment of recipes. Sauces, pastries, puddings, cookies, torten, fillings and frostings, plus a few more, you’ll be fairly itchin’ to get into the kitchen.
Hallelujah! The Welcome Table: A Lifetime of Memories with Recipes by Maya Angelou (2004) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You know Maya as an incredible poet but what you may not know is she can cook too. In this book she combines her gift of words with her love for food. What a read!
The Harry Caray’s Restaurant Cookbook: The Official Home Plate of the Chicago Cubs by Jane Stern and Michael Stern (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Most restaurant cookbooks make me say, “meh.” I usually feel as though they are leaving things out. Not this one. Great recipes and some full-color and black-and-white images sharing Harry history, plus Harry Caray’s Restaurant lore makes it well-rounded awesome. Harry Caray passed away in 1998 but the restaurants are still around. You can read about them here.
The Healthy Slow Cooker: 135 Gluten-Free Recipes for Health and Wellness by Judith Finlayson (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m not gluten-free but I do appreciate slow cooker recipes that aren’t just “a can of this” or “a can of that.” It’s not a “cream of everything” kind of cookbook (which means it will likely be used). These aren’t the same run-of-the-mill slow cooker recipes either. Healthy cooking tips and snippets featuring detailed health-related info are scattered throughout.
Heartland: The Best of the Old and the New from Midwest Kitchens by Marcia Adams (1991) (AMAZON)(EBAY)
“Mary R. ’92 from Louis” reads the inscription. Mary must have enjoyed this book because she taped multiple recipe clippings (from Country magazine/1993) to the inside front and back covers. Recipe introductions, state introductions, and tips add in plenty of reading in a book devoted to the Midwest and its 1990s cooking.
Heartland Baking From the Jerre Anne Cafe: and Other Home-Cooked Favorites with Tips and Tidbits from Agee, Frances, Jerre, Jean, Anne, and Charlotte by Charla Lawhon (1991) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The Jerre Anne Cafeteria in St. Joseph, Missouri opened in 1930 and operated until 2008. Another hand-me-down from my mother, it’s no wonder I couldn’t resist this one, what with all of the dessert recipes.
Heartland Cooking: Breads by Frances Towner Giedt (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’m firm in the belief that you can never have too many bread cookbooks. So, yes, one more. I’ve made a few things from here and plan to make a few more. There are bread machine recipes in addition to handmade items.
Hello, Cupcake!: Irresistibly Playful Creations Anyone Can Make by Karen Tack and Alan Richardson (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There is no way I will ever buy packaged frosting, as suggested in the book. But I will use the instructions found inside to create hilarious cupcakes! My plan is to let the kids go to town and have fun creating.
Help, Mr. Food! Company’s Coming! by Art Ginsburg (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
For more than three decades, Mr. Food served up easy recipes on his TV show. This cookbook is no different. “Ooh! It’s so good!” as Art would say.
Hershey’s Make It Chocolate! (1987) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Spiral bound with a hard cover, this is a sturdy little book. Talk about useful! There’s a blank list on the inside cover for you to jot down your favorite recipes and the page number. Why don’t more cookbooks do that? Genius! I’ve used this book, I adore this book, and I’ll probably wear it out before all is said and done.
Holiday Cookies: Prize-Winning Family Recipes from the Chicago Tribune for Cookies, Bars, Brownies and More (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Since 1986, the Chicago Tribune has hosted a cookie contest. I was born in Chicago and my parents always read the Chicago Trib (and still do). Mom gifted me this cookbook one Christmas as a nod to my Chicago early childhood. I love the stories accompanying the recipes. We made one recipe from it so far (gingerbread cookies for the oldest) and have plenty more to cross of the “try this” list!
Homemade Cookies: By the Food Editors of Farm Journal (1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There aren’t that many images to this book but you don’t need them. It’s cookies! You can do this. Lucky for you, this book is divided into various cookie types, from molded to bar, from dropped to pressed and variations. I think you will like this one.
Homemade Cookies: By the Food Editors of Farm Journal (1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There aren’t that many images to this book but you don’t need them. It’s cookies! You can do this. Lucky for you, this book is divided into various cookie types, from molded to bar, from dropped to pressed and variations. I think you will like this one.
Homemade Doughnuts: Techniques and Recipes for Making Sublime Doughnuts in Your Home Kitchen by Kamal Grant (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We love donuts, yes, we do! We love donuts, how about you? My husband is the donut maker in our home, but that doesn’t keep me from ear-marking new things to try.
Hometown Appetites: The Story of Clementine Paddleford, the Forgotten Food Writer Who Chronicled How America Ate by Kelly Alexander and Cynthia Harris (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Yes, this is a book about a food writer who was as well-known as Julia Child and James Beard, a rival of Craig Claiborne in the 1960s (he brushed off her work) but has somehow been lost to time. Clementine Paddleford did it all, earning an audience of 12 million readers each week, flying here and there in a piper club. Yes, she was even a pilot! By 1949 she was raking in around $25,000 a year. In 1953, Time magazine named her the United States’ “Best-Known Food Editor.” More text and story than recipes, just an FYI.
The Hoosier Cookbook (1976) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
While sitting at an author fair, a woman flew up to the author sitting next to me, said how she loved the cookbook the author’s mother helped write and still uses it. For two seconds, I was excited because it was this cookbook and I knew I had it! I was thinking of questions I could ask…when the author said her mother didn’t have a hand in that one. Ugh! Even without getting inside info, it’s a cool cookbook. Unlike other cookbooks, the locations of the contributor’s don’t refer to the towns or cities, but the county. As someone who has traveled through plenty of counties, I dig it. My copy lacks the book jacket and is blue with a hen in a basket on the front.
House and Garden’s Cook Book: A Generous Collection of Recipes Compiled by the Editors of House & Garden to Tempt the Gourmet and Inspire the Beginner (1957) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Eleven editors had a hand in this beautiful book. It opens with a sizable dictionary of cooking terms. Each category’s introduction includes fascinating history and helpful tips. Even the pages feel lovely.
How to Cook Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Food by Mark Bittman (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I believe I received this one from my mom long ago, when I only had a handful of cookbooks to my name, and had no idea what I was doing. Once upon a time, it was brand new and beautiful. Those days are decades gone now. It has moved from one coast to the other, back to the middle of the country, then a few states away. It’s no longer even remotely clean. The edges of the pages are absolutely filthy, the book jacket is a mess, and I started using it before I added the first date something was made with my follow-up notes (although, interestingly, I still did sometimes write down notes). It’s the book I turn to for simple roast chicken, Pasta with Butter, Sage, and Parmesan (our boys call it Italian Mac ‘n Cheese and it’s long been their favorite), and the Roast Turkey and Gravy (without Stuffing).
“I” – “L” Cookbooks
The International Chocolate Cookbook by Nancy Baggett (1991) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We hadn’t lived in Pennsylvania long, when the boys and I wandered into a sell-it-again shop. When the clerk saw the cookbooks in my hand, she asked if I liked cookbooks, then invited me to the back area to look at the boxes she had received three days ago. Heaven! Whomever donated the cookbooks was obviously a professional. There were numerous chocolate cookbooks and magazines. I couldn’t resist this one. The ice cream recipes alone leave me drooling. Color images accompany many recipes, but not all. The chocolate artistry section in the back is full of pretty neat stuff.
International Folk Festival Cook Book First Edition (1979) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Wow does this cookbook have good stuff! Chapters are divided by ethnicities and culters, from “Arab-World” to Bulgarian-Russian to Donauschwaben to Indian, Jamaican, Polish…this is a big list. The cookbook is just over 100 pages of sheer variety.
Irish Pub Cooking (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Cold weather doesn’t have to mean the same old boring soups and stews. This cookbook was made for winter, I swear. This is comfort food. Our youngest found this book at an antique shop while he was visiting a good family friend. He bought it and surprised me with it. He is nine. Isn’t that cute?
The Italian Baker: The Classic Tastes of the Italian Countryside–its Breads, Pizza, Focacce, Cakes, Pastries, and Cookies by Carol Field (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There are ninety-five pages concerning bread in Italy and baking basics. After that, the book is divided by different types of bread, from regional loaves to new loaves, what to do with leftover breads, and so much more. Look to the glossary in the back so you can actually correctly pronounce the breads you make.
Italian Cooking: At the Academy by Hallie Donnelly and Janet Kessel Fletcher (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What’s “the Academy,” you say? Why, it’s the California Culinary Academy founded back in 1977. This is a superb collection of recipes.
Italian Regional Cooking by Ada Boni (1969) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is an oversized, rather massive cookbook. It doesn’t fit on my shelves and I don’t even mind, it’s that good. The book is broken into places: Piedmont, Lombardy, Veneto, Liguria, Emilia-Romagna, Tuscany, Umbria-the Marches, Rome, Lazio, Abruzzo-Molise, Naples-Campagna, Calabria-Lucania, Apulia, Sicily, and Sardinia. Recipes, images, and info GALORE.
James Beard’s Simple Foods: 40 Cooking Lessons by America’s Greatest Cook (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Although James passed away in 1985, his estate presented this collection of his articles originally published in the 1970s in “American Way,” an in-flight magazine for American Airlines first produced in 1966. It was a series aimed at teaching clueless, yet motivated cooks, some basic techniques. While there are recipes in this book, it isn’t formatted like a cookbook, but like a conversation, with recipes mixed into the dialogue. Illustrations pep up the occasional page.
James McNair’s Custards, Mousses, and Puddings by James McNair (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You have to admire the author’s persistence. For years, James tired to get his publisher to agree to this cookbook. They kept refusing. He persisted. Thank goodness.
James McNair’s Favorites by James McNair (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Holy cow, James McNair! In the beginning of this book, all of his previous books up to that point were listed. Wow. This guy published a slew of titles, most of them focusing on a single item, like Breakfast orPizza. You may remember the one about Puddings above. Well, this time the cookbook I’m talking about isn’t little. It’s a massive volume of recipes, some 600+ pages! Different cuisines are covered as well as everyday fare. I’m rarin’ to cook all the things. Wanna join me?
Jamie at Home: Cook Your Way to the Good Life by Jamie Oliver (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Did you know Jamie began cooking in his parents’ pub when he was eight? This cookbook is divided by seasons and focuses on garden-fresh food. More than recipes I want to make, there are instructions on how to grow your own mushrooms, potatoes, tomatoes, and more. An entire section is devoted to pizza. The winter/pastry section in particular has me not dreading the winter nearly so bad. That alone is something.
The Jewish Holiday Cookbook: An International Collection of Recipes and Customs by Gloria Kaufer Greene (1985) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A modified version of some recipes in the book were published in the Baltimore Jewish Times. What I love about this book, is how each recipe is accompanied by an intro. Some include stories or detail how best to serve a recipe or even if it was used in a particular celebration. It’s a fascinating read.
Jim Fobel’s Casseroles: Tasty Recipes for Everyday Living and Casual Entertaining by Jim Fobel (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This 1996 winner of a James Beard Award evidently likes his casseroles. Turns out, I probably will too. They don’t all use canned items so there’s a nice mix here that should appeal to anyone.
Jody’s Dream: Recipes and Memoirs by Marian Bogan (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Before we checked out of the quaint Lantz House Bed and Breakfast, the innkeeper handed me this cookbook. I was touched. The innkeeper has since retired and moved to Florida. Centerville, IN, where Jody’s Restaurant was once located is a tiny town known for its unique architectural detail: archways. This cookbook is Marian’s reminiscences and her recipes from the time their family restaurant, Jody’s Dream, opened in 1938 to her sale of the place in 1977. Marian continued to make her famous apple dumplings for the next ten years for the new owners.
Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes by Joy Wilson (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
There are pictures with every recipe, but not every picture is necessarily of the finished product. That’s okay. If you liked baked goods, and hello! Of COURSE you do or your wouldn’t be here, then all will be forgiven. I’ve used this cookbook a bit when making cake. I am a fan.
Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker, and Ethan Becker (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I held out on purchasing a copy for years. I wanted one with splatters, spills, and handwritten notes. I found one with light splatters on a few recipes (pages 670-671, and a random bear sticker (page 830) that I am positive was not placed by an adult. Read the section on cocktail parties. I think it makes a lot of sense!
Joy of Cooking: All About Breakfast and Brunch by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker, Ethan Becker (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A few years ago, my husband accepted a job two hours away. The kids and I stayed behind while we tried to sell the house. We gave up, rented it out, and joined him six months later. We didn’t want to wait any longer. It was an awful six months. To help give the kids something to look forward to, whether we saw him that weekend or not, I came up with “Big Breakfast Sundays.” I’d go all out: breakfast meat, scones, muffins, maybe a coffee cake, or fruit salad, or fruit soup. Whatever I did, it included plenty of extras. This cookbook was a frequent resource. Though we no longer have big breakfast Sundays, we aren’t cereal people. Our boys have hot breakfasts every morning–and there is plenty I pull from here.
Just for Starters: A Treasury of 350 of the World’s Best Hors d’Oeuvres and Appetizers (1981) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I don’t like to entertain without appetizers. There is nothing worse than a lunch or dinner taking longer to prepare than expected–and to be absolutely starving with nary a snack in sight. Enter: appetizers. These aren’t boring.
Just Mini Desserts: Quick and Easy Mini Dessert Recipes for Casual Entertaining by Robert Zollweg (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Entertaining doesn’t have to be difficult, stressful, or time-consuming. This cookbook shows you how to create memorable desserts–mini-sized! Most use pantry ingredients and don’t require much in the way of advance planning.
Katie Brown’s Weekends: Making the Most of Your Two Treasured Days: More Than 130 Recipes, Projects, and Ideas (2005) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I can easily do without the projects, but I have made some of her recipes from this book. Those? Those I can’t do without! I admit, this cookbook had me excitedly flipping through pages, trying to decide what to make next. And? She shares my love for goat cheese.
The Korean Cookbook: Quick and Easy Recipes with an Introduction by Nika Standen Hazelton by Judy Hyun (1970) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What do I know about Korean cooking? Not much, so the simple layout of this cookbook appealed to me. Then I read the back inside flap. “Judy Hyun (nee Judy Kirkland Douglas) was born in Washington D.C. She was educated at Vassar College, the University of Geneva, and the Sorbonne in Paris. In addition to her articles on art for various journals in the United States and Europe, she was well-known for her translations of French books into English. . . . Before her death in 1970, she was married to Peter Hyun, the Korean-born American editor and writer. Wow. I wanted to learn more about Judy. According to this New York Times piece, Judy had aches and pains, but by the time she knew it was lymphoma, she had but a few months to live. She was 32 and died two months after her cookbook was released in the states. Her introduction is wonderful. My 1998 edition includes illustrations.
La Cucina Di Lidia by Lidia Bastianich and Jay Jacobs (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The first recipe I flipped to was for Insalata di Fagiolini e Patate, string bean and potato salad, and something I remember digging out of my Italian grandmother’s fridge as a kid. Funny, huh? No wonder this cookbook headed home with me. Lidia Bastianich has been the host of different TV shows, with “Lidia’s Kitchen,” the most recent (airing 2014-present).
The Lady Had Seconds: Dazzling Desserts to Tempt Your Senses (2005) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Okay, that’s like every meal. While I hate the connotation, I DO love this cookbook. With only 24 recipes, it is a tiny little cookbook. YET! There are images. Oh, and desserts. Pretty desserts. I plan on making the chocolate decadence dessert for our next “fancy dinner” at home. It’s white chocolate truffle, dark chocolate truffle, and raspberry sauce. Oh. My.
Le Cordon Bleu Complete Cook: Home Collection (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY) When they say it’s a complete book, they mean it! This large cookbook comes in at 576 (including the index) with full-color images for every recipe. The “Chef’s Technique’s” chapter at the back of the book provides the visual nudge you need to tackle most any menu. In short, amazing.
The Little Book of Big Sandwiches by Michael McLaughlin (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Go beyond the boring lunch meat sandwiches and say “hello” to something different. Sure, these sandwiches may occasionally require advance prep, but with tasty end results, it’s a forgivable offense. Especially when there are recipes like Griddled Tomato, Pesto, and Three-Cheese Sandwiches and Muffaletas involved.
Luscious Coconut Desserts by Lori Longbotham and Lucy Schaeffer (2009) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
When I was a kid, my dad once brought home the most amazing dessert. Shaped like a bunny, and made of cake, I couldn’t wait to dig in. It was a surprise from one of his clients, Sister Agatha, who gave it to him to give to his daughters. Then I realized the outside of it was coconut. NOOOO! Back then, I hated coconut. As an adult: I love the stuff, as you can tell by my coconut recipes. I’ve since heard that coconut is an acquired taste. This cookbook is devoted to everything coconut and my oh my take a look at that coconut pie. And the layer cake and the the coconut and fresh ginger ice cream. I could go on. But I won’t keep torturing you.
Luscious Creamy Desserts by Lori Longbotham (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What are the chances that I would own two cookbooks that begin with the word “luscious?” Weird. But, wow. I’ve shared before how I get on pudding making kicks, so a whole cookbook devoted to all desserts creamy and satisfying hits the right note with me. Classic crème caramel (one of my fave desserts, though I suppose that is a rather ridiculously large list), mango kulfi, lemon meringue ice cream, blackberry ripple lime cheesecake..do I really need to go on? ‘Cuz I can. I’ll leave you with this: Paris-brest with hazelnut praline cream. Fancy, fancy and yet—the ingredients are simple and so are the instructions.
Madame Wong’s Long-Life Chinese Cookbook: Recipes Specially Designed for the West Bend Electric Wok by S.T. Ting Wong and Sylvia Schulman (1977, 1978) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Okay, so I didn’t’ realize these recipes were created for an electric skillet. Turn out, it doesn’t matter. No images, but great illustrations and quotes grace these pages. My favorite so far? “This tastes like heaven above heaven” or “Life is sweet. Keep on.”
The Madison County Cookbook: Homespun Recipes, Family Traditions, & Recollections from Winterset, Iowa-The Heart of Madison County (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Remember that folksy country art oh-so popular in the early to mid-1990s? Feast your eyes on the interior of this one. You’ll find it lives on in all its glory–along with stories from the area too. I think you will be pleasantly surprised with this cookbook. It’s absolutely awesome. Truly, a great collection.
Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Cookies (1977) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Maida passed away a few months ago as I write this. I was overjoyed to find this book! In case you didn’t know, she was the author of NINE cookbooks and was one of the first people inducted into the Chocolatier Hall of Fame. Finally I own one of them!
Maida Heatter’s Book of Great Desserts by Maida Heatter (1978) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My cookbook includes this inscription: “A Day without Judy is like a day without food — or sunshine. Harry, October 12, 1978” Isn’t that wonderful? I found my copy in an antique shop. It even include her New York Times 1972 Dessert of the Year, her Palm Beach Brownies, (AMAZING!!!) Queen Cake, and her Chocolate Mousse Heatter.
Marguerite Patten’s Fruit and Vegetable Cookery (1971) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Ah, this book has over 700 recipes, including how to freeze fruits and veggies, plus color images. This is my first cookbook from Marguerite Patten, and I am so thrilled. Images don’t go with each recipe, but there are still a nice amount here. Not to rub it in, but I found my copy for $3! $3! Hooray! Worth so much more than that. What a treasure.
Marinades: Dry Rubs, Pastes, and Marinades for Poultry, Meat, Seafood, Cheese, and Vegetables by Jim Tarantino (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A table at the back of the book offers up advice on what marinade to use with what meat, and how long it takes. Is that helpful or is that helpful? Not every marinade takes eight hours. Grilling season, what we call “all year round,” will never be the same!
Marshmallows: Light and Fluffy Bite-Size Treats (2013) (AMAZON)(EBAY)
Heads-up: the font size of this book is small and hard to read. That said, I will make the effort to read it because I believe homemade marshmallows would be amazing to have when cold weather hits. Hot cocoa demands it!
Martha Dixon’s Copper Kettle Cook Book (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Martha Dixon was host of a thirty-minute show, “The Copper Kettle,” in 1954 and later the sixty-minute “Martha Dixon Show” in Lansing, Michigan on WJIM-TV (now known as WLNS). Take a look at the unique TV studio here. That’s twenty-five years of show biz. Her cookbook, published in 1963, is one of my faves due to Martha’s blurbs before many a recipe.
The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The first decade of Martha Stewart Living Magazine’s recipes weighs in at almost 3.5 pounds and featured 1200 recipes. When I was young, my mom and I used to watch her show. I will never forget the hundreds of homemade cookies (gingerbread people, if I remember right) she made to give as gifts. Jaw-dropping. Be like Martha with this massive compilation.
The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook: The Original Classics: The Bestselling Cookbook, Updated for the Way We Cook Today (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY) Originally published in 2000, this 2007 reboot hosts more than 1100 recipes from Martha Stewart Living issues from 1990-2000. I’m eyeing the cherry tomato “pie” with Gruyere crust and the wild mushroom and spinach lasagna. Hey, a woman can’t live on baked goods alone. Supposedly.
Martha Stewart’s Hors d’Oeuvres: The Creation and Presentation of Fabulous Finger Foods (1984) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
It’s another book full of menus and recipes. So, it’s another cookbook I had to own. Martha shares my affinity for appetizers and this cookbook offers up a nice range. Given the year, it’s funny to see the kinds of food newly available at the time, like sun-dried tomatoes.
Martha Stewart’s Menus for Entertaining (1994) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Did you know Martha’s first book was on entertaining? She got her start as a caterer. This cookbook is full of my favorite thing: menus! And that’s a good thing. From Halloween to baby showers, all manner of menus, recipes, photos, and explanation go with it.
Martha Stewart’s Pies and Tarts (1985) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The Chocolate Mousse Architecture Tart drew me in. Martha shared how things didn’t go to plan. “When making the curls for this tart I experienced difficulty in getting the large free-form curls that I wanted for the top. Mine wanted to be small, tight spirals or large sheets. Still, I persevered, and saved all my unusual forms.” Then, she used them. I love that–and the look of that tart! Also, you just know from the front cover that she’s wearing shoulder pads. Hello, 1985.
Meals from the Manse Cookbook: Favorite Recipes from the Wives of Great Preachers with Devotional Gems for Homemakers by Lora Lee Parrott (1952) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“Presented to Mr. and Mrs. George H Clarkson, November 15, 1959. From Mrs. Charlotte Purkey of Anderson, Indiana. May God’s blessings be upon you and make you a blessing to others.” Turning the pages in this book are, dare I say, heavenly? It’s the kind of book that includes recipes with the names and location of the submitter. Occasional black-and-white images are filtered in with 50s style biblical lessons and stories. But the recipes are vintage fantastic.
Mirro Cookbook: Approved Recipes from the Mirro Test Kitchen: Third Edition Completely Revised and Enlarged: New Illustrations (1947) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Mirro was an aluminum goods manufacturing company that began in 1895. The Mirro brand was unveiled in 1917 and is still around today. I love everything about this cookbook: the layout, the (sometimes incredibly unappetizing images), and the recipes. Anyone with a pink kitchen needs this cookbook. It’s cute!
The Mixer Bible: 300 Recipes For Your Stand Mixer by Meredith Deeds and Carla Snyder (2013) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Photos are limited to a handful of recipes but with such clear directions you won’t even miss them. This cookbook will let you know what mixer attachment is needed at the top of each recipe. If you have a fancy mixer, you will know what to do with it after you get a copy of this book.
The Modern Family Cookbook by Meta Given: A Book for Daily Use in All American Homes. Planned to Fit the Income and to Improve the Health of an Average Modern American Family (1963) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Here’s another book to add to the “cookbooks for people who love to read cookbooks” category. It’s so good. I kid you not, there are fifty different parts to this book but my favorite is the menu section organized by month and the short stories that frequently accompany a recipe.
More From the Farm: Family Recipes and Memories of a Lifetime by Philip Potempa (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
From the Farm was the first book and this edition covers 2004-2007. Three years of recipes pulled from Potempa’s The Times Newspaper columns are included. Images, sketches, and unpublished columns make this cookbook read like a family story.
More Hoosier Cooking Edited by Elaine Lumbra (1982) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Indiana Extension Homemakers shared another round of recipes for a great compilation cookbook. The name of the recipe author and the Indiana county are included with each recipe like the first cookbook did. This time around, microwaves, food processors and blenders, and skillets and woks each have their own chapters. Welcome to the 1980s.
Morning Bakes: 30 Sweet and Savory Treats to Kick-Start Your Day by Linda Collister (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Lemon almond blueberry muffins, marmalade muffins, and pecan orange cranberry muffins? Yeah, I’m down with that. It’s a short and sweet cookbook to add something new to your breakfast table.
My Father’s Daughter: Delicious, Easy Recipes Celebrating Family and Togetherness by Gwyneth Paltrow (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Before jade eggs, there was a different sort of Gwyneth, a more approachable, eats the same kind of food we do, sort of Gwyneth. The oldest made the cheesy stuffed burgers and they were so good, they are on the menu for tonight (though it has been a couple of months now). We used gruyere, but that’s because the boys are such huge fans of it (we are cheese lovers, all). This is a cookbook I’ll keep using for sure.
My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes that Saved My Life by Ruth Reichl (2015) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I have read that people dislike the way she lost her job and then wrote a cookbook to pull herself out of it. As though that isn’t a big enough loss to warrant depression and despair and all the bad stuff that goes with it. But who are we to judge how or what someone grieves? Who are we to say that a job loss so sudden and unexpected, in something you loved, with people you loved, wouldn’t shake you to the core? If you’ve ever been blindsided by something HUGE, then you know. You understand. And it does take time to heal from it, whatever “it” is for you. I love this book and the recipes. I make page 279 about every other week.
Nestle Toll House Semi-Sweet Morsels Best-Loved Recipes (2005) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
It’s a board book! You know, like the kind of material a toddler would use. I suppose it results in a cookbook that’s durable and built to last. It’s a pantry-friendly kind of book so you should be able to pick it up and get baking without any trips to the store.
The New Good Housekeeping Cookbook (1986) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Some names = gotta haves. Good Housekeeping is one of those. Sure, the 1980s were big on kitchen shortcuts, but plenty in this cookbook makes it worth the shelf space. My copy is missing the dust jacket but it’s what is inside that counts, right?
The New York Times Cook Book by Craig Claiborne (1961) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My first-edition copy is in great shape, unfortunately. The scope of recipes here is certainly interesting. I wish the book’s former owner had actually used this copy. I would have loved to have seen those recipes considered a favorite.
The New York Times Cookbook Revised Edition: The Classic Gourmet Cookbook for the Home Kitchen now Completely Revised and Updated with Hundreds of New Recipes by Craig Claiborne (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The almost 1500 recipes inside the original epic tome have been revised, reworked, and updated. Some 40% didn’t make the cut. So, that equals new reading for you.
The New York Times Dessert Cookbook: 440 Recipes for Every Kind of Sweet to Make at Home (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
With a tagline like that, how could I NOT pick it up? Mine is an ex-library book, so it doesn’t have anyone’s notes inside (bummer). Where do you begin with a hefty book like this? I love the way this book includes the author’s name or the restaurant’s name, or the chef plus restaurant name and location by many a recipe. Flipping through, reading familiar names, and then being able to find more recipes by a person or place is a wonderful thing. As silly as it is, I want to try the All-American Popcorn Balls so bad. Picture it: fifth grade. It was to be the last class part because, someone decided class parties should end at middle school. So, my last class party, and someone brought in popcorn balls. I was so excited. Who didn’t love those things? I shoved mine in my backpack to enjoy later, so I could give due attention to the perishable Jell-O Jigglers. When I got home, our dog, Morgan, nosed into my backpack AND ATE IT! Here I am, how many years since fifth grade (coincidentally, the same grade our youngest son is in at the time of this writing) and I still bemoan the loss of that popcorn ball. How could I ever think I wouldn’t find a way to be involved in food somehow? Funny and sad story, many, many years later, a neighbor remarked to my mother how they hadn’t seen my grandma in awhile, and wondered if she was okay. My mom said she was fine, and, no kidding, a few days later, Morgan passed away, and my dad was out digging a giant hole in the yard. Neighbors had to be concerned!
Norway’s Delight: Dishes and Specialties by Elise Sverdrup (1985) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
You can use the Norwegian recipe index to find your favorite dishes or you can use the English recipe index. There is a glossary of terms to help as you work your way through this nice little book.
“O” – “Q” Cookbooks
Oh, Fudge!: A Celebration of America’s Favorite Candy by Lee Edwards Benning (1990) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Any cookbook that sparks one of our son’s interests is going home with me. They love when they can make something great without a ton of time invested or a ton of my help. This cookbook is fudge, fudge, and candy, and toffee, and caramel. After reading the blurb on marshmallows, I feel an even bigger pull to make my own.
Omelettes, Souffles & Frittatas by Lou Seibert Pappas (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I love eggs from my head down to my legs! So why haven’t I made anything from this cookbook I’ve had since it came out? I have no idea. The recipes sound so good though so–don’t make my mistake. If you get it, use it now, and report back to me!
On Top of Spaghetti: Macaroni, Linguine, Penne, and Pasta of Every Kind by Johanne Killeen and George Germon (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The cookbook writers and award-winning husband-and-wife chefs began Al Forno Restaurant in Providence, Rhode Island back in 1980. George Germon passed away in 2015 (read his New York Times obit here). If you love pasta, like I love pasta, get this book. Now. You’re welcome.
Operation Vittles Cookbook Compiled By the American Women in Blockaded Berlin January 1949 (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Wanna read the best dedication ever? “Dedicated to the happy group of wives who attempted to obtain American meals by slaying the dragons of language, old utensils, ovens sans thermometers, conflicting opinions, etc., ad infinitude…and to the many excellent cooks who bore with the puzzling variety in the American diet — the endless series of “Immer was neu ist!'” That translates to “always something new.” Neat, isn’t it? Each recipe includes the signature of the woman who wrote it, which is really something since so many other cookbooks only use “Mrs. so-and-so.” It’s probably one of the most interesting cookbooks I own.
Our Favorite Meats, Favorites from Home Economics Teachers (1966) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Oh, these old covers just kill me. On the inside cover, the previous owner of my copy wrote “Pepper Steak — 56 (but it’s actually on page 43) and Chicken Salad — 264.” Yes, there are even a couple of notes too. Hooray!
The Passover Gourmet by Nira Rousso (1995) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Fonts for the table of contents are odd, however, the font used for the recipes is nice and large so it’s easy on the eyes. I enjoy trying different types of cooking and baking. I have my eye on the cheese rolls with coconut!
Pasta & Co. by Request: Coveted Recipes from Seattle’s Leading Take-Out Foodshop (1991) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Pasta and I are total BFF’s. I like the looks of this cookbook. Divided by the type of food (sides, desserts, and the like), you can flip to what you need, fast. Every so often, a sidebar note will share a menu idea using the recipe on the page. I like that–and I cannot wait to start cooking and baking from it.
Peacock Pantry by Anita Rodgers Ogilvie (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’ve made a recipe or two (loved it) but the intro does give me pause every time. The author included a poem about how her children wanted all the recipes, even the bad ones, from the family’s inn to be put into a book. I am pretending it’s a joke, and she didn’t actually include good and bad. Right? Anita includes a few lines of intro above some of the recipes so maybe if I stick to those, it will be okay. Kidding aside, I’m happy with this one so far.
Perfect Endings: Chocolate Dessert and Beverage Cook Book From the Test Kitchens of The Nestle Company, Inc. (1962) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
More dessert cookbooks? But, of course! I love comparing recipes to each other before I begin. Don’t you? This is one of those flip-book formats. There are a few images here and there but it’s charm lies in the illustrations that line most pages. It’s an excellent little book and one more I wouldn’t want to be without.
The Perfect Finish: Special Desserts for Every Occasion by Bill Yosses and Melissa Clark (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
How many times have I read this cookbook in the short time I’ve had it? At least three. I need to just pick something and make it already. You may be familiar with Melissa Clark’s work in the New York Times dining section. If so, you’ll <3 this book too.
The Perfect Pie: More Than 125 All-Time Favorite Pies & Tarts by Susan G. Purdy (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Need new pie recipes for dessert? This book is it. There are multiple crust recipes, all manner of pies, and the reasons behind why a pie is made how it is made. Great to read and even better to use to make a pie.
Pillsbury: Best Cookies Cookbook: Favorite Recipes from America’s Most-Trusted Kitchens (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
After rifling through a copy at a friend’s house, I wasted no time ordering a copy of my own. This book is the cookie bomb-diggity. Pages may have fallen out, the binding may be broken, but it’s still a fave.
Pillsbury’s Bake Off Breads Cook Book (1968) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
“Creatively speaking, bread is the most rewarding kind of food a woman can prepare,” reads the first line inside. Gag! Get past that little nugget from days of old and you have yourself a delightful bread-related cookbook for anyone.
Pizza: 50 Authentic Italian Recipes by Pamela Sheldon Johns (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What an incredible cookbook! This author visited Naples pizzerias, gathering information, history, and recipes first-hand. She shares dough recipes and topping recipes, and the story behind these choices. If you need to get away from basic sausage or pepperoni pizza, let this cookbook be your guide! Don’t forget to invite me over.
Pizza: Any Way You Slice It (Easy Recipes for Great Homemade Pizzas, Focaccia, and Calzones) by Michele Scicolone and Charles Scicolone (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’ve had this cookbook for more than twenty years. Back in the day, my mom was part of a subscription-based book club. Each month, you had to purchase a set amount of cookbooks from a list. This was one of my picks. I did well considering I still use it today.
Quick & Delicious Bread Machine Recipes by Norman A Garrett (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Have you yet realized how much I love bread? How can I resist a bread machine cookbook? I can’t. This one is formulated for one and one and a half pound loaves. There are sixty-seven bread recipes just beggin’ to be tried.
Quick From Scratch Chicken and Other Birds from Food and Wine Books (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I love turkey. Like, I LOVE turkey. I keep a few in the freezer for a turkey dinner any old time. I don’t need a special holiday to make a turkey! So, a cookbook with a focus on chicken…and TURKEY, is a cookbook for me. Since these are recipes from Food & Wine, expect plenty of pretty company-worthy type of entrees too, though really, who doesn’t love an attractive dinner with the fam?
Rachel Ray’s Big Orange Book: The Ultimate Collection of All-New 30-Minute Vegetarian Dinners, Meals for One, Kosher Meals, Holiday Menus, and Much More! (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Her cookbooks are hit or miss with me. But this cookbook feels different. As with her other cookbooks, you know it’s about cooking meals, and not desserts. Thirty minute meals are big in this book too, but it does offer more than that. You might be surprised. Of course, if you have other cookbooks of hers that are fantastic, I’d love to know.
Ramen, Soba, Udon: Food Heroes: Plus Other Noodle Dishes (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We love noodles. But what we don’t love are impossible to find ingredients. This book has a nice balance of recipes with and without items you won’t find in just any store. I like that.
Ramen, Soba, and Udon: Plus Other Noodle Dishes (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Since our oldest is interested in cooking, and noodle-y, ethnic dishes intrigue him, picking up this cookbook required zero thinking on my part. Of course, seeing a recipe for Pork Pad Thai had me congratulating myself on my great “find,” while imaging all the tasty noodleicious dishes I’d soon be enjoying. Moving may have interfered with those plans, but now we are back on track — and the kid is checking it out before next week’s shopping trip.
Real American Breakfast: The Best Meal of the Day, Any Time of the Day by Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Recipes for breakfast or brunch or whenever you want. Kentucky hot brown strata, Denver sandwich, Spiced Oatmeal with Apples and Cider Syrup…your morning will never be the same.
Retro Barbecue: Tasty Recipes for the Grillin’ Guy by Linda Everett (2002) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Don’t let the subtitle turn you off. This cookbook is a retro rewind of the 1950s, when Dad ruled the grill and Mom pretty much did everything else. It’s a fun read with great images. Fire up the grill and prepare the sides–no matter what your gender.
Retro Happy Hour: Drinks and Eats With a 50’s Beat by Linda Everett (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Nostalgia lovers will flip through this book with glee. Vintage artwork and old-fashioned party recipes will make every gathering a good one.
The Russian Tea Room Cookbook by Faith Stewart-Gordon and Nika Hazelton (1981) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Members of the Russian Imperial Ballet founded The Russian Tea Room restaurant in 1927 in New York, New York. Historic tidbits and backstory are included with the recipes. What a book!
Ryzon Baking Book: A Practical Manual for the Preparation of Food Requiring Baking Powder (1916) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This slim, hard-covered manual was edited by Marion Harris Neil, a lady who had previously served as editor of the Ladies’ Home Journal, and has an amazing number of books behind her name. Ryzon Baking Powder does not appear to have been around long (though the company still is today). The book features winners of a Ryzon recipe contest, wonderful colored illustrations, and various essays regarding the preparation of different foods, such as cake or pastry. It’s a good read with neat recipes.
Sam Choy’s Kitchen: Cooking Doesn’t Get Any Easier than This (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Chef Sam, host of Sam Choy’s Kitchen, encourages you to follow his recipes but to add in ingredients of your own if you want. He wrote, “You may love garlic and onion and cilantro as much as I do. Or, you may think cilantro tastes like an old sofa. Substitute fresh basil…Make the taste work for you.” His fun personality shines through every page.
Sauces and Dips: 40 Delicious Classic and Contemporary Recipes (2006) AMAZON EBAY
More sauces and dips. I guess I’m always thinking ahead to the winter. It’s on my list to experiment more with sauces and, with a constantly hungry teen boy, I’ve been thinking of making more pre-dinner appetizers too. Just to mix things up when everything gets dark and blah. There are sauces, dips, and recipes for entrees. It’s a slender book but attractively done.
Scandinavian Cooking: Savory Dishes from the Four Northern Sisters, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland (‘Round the world cooking library)
Recipe Contributions by Gunnevi Bonekamp, Gothenburg, Sweden, International Authority on Scandinavian Cooking (1973) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I had you at “International Authority,” right? That’s what I thought and why I had to take this cookbook home with me. “To Mary from Karrin with Best Wishes for a Happy Birthday 1977” is inscribed inside my copy. Mary did use it. Check-marks are on several recipes.
Scandinavian Feasts : Celebrating Traditions Throughout the Year by Beatrice Ojakangas (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Menus with recipes to fit a slew of occasions for a Scandinavian-themed meal. We do such things in our home, and it’s always fun. We pick an ethnicity or region and make dinner and dessert to fit. This cookbook will prove indispensable (and delicious, I just know it).
Sensational Buttercream Decorating: 50 Projects for Luscious Cakes, Mini-Cakes and Cupcakes by Carey Madden (2014) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Spiral-bound. loose-leaf binder and packed with full-color images, this book was made to be frequently referenced. Your cake decorating confusion will be a thing of the past once you have this how-to manual. Recipes included.
Simple Honest Food: The Best of Bill Granger by Bill Granger (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Baked eggs with spinach and parmesan, Vietnamese chicken salad, spaghetti with cherry tomatoes, ricotta, spinach, and pecorino…I want to make a large number of things from this lovely cookbook. Mandarin and almond cake or beef and noodle stir fry with Asian greens. I have busy days ahead in the kitchen, that’s for sure.
Simply the Best Chicken: Recipes from Gold Kist Farms (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Same old chicken recipes got you down? Not any more! This cookbook will make all your chicken dreams come true. From fancy “impress your company” dishes to everyday, easy peasy fare, this cookbook even includes recipes from previous contest winners. No matter what your occasion, I think you’ll find something here to use.
Slumps, Grunts, and Snickerdoodles: What Colonial America Ate and Why by Lila Perl (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The title leaped out at me from the library discard shelf. Don’t mind if I do. Sure, it’s geared for kids and there are pictures, but there are recipes mixed in among the facts as each chapter focuses on an area and a specific food. This would be a great classroom text.
Smoothies: 50 Recipes for High-Energy Refreshment by Mary Corpening Barber, Sara Corpening, and Lori Lyn Narlock (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Another cookbook I picked out back in 1997 when my mom had joined a cookbook book club. Remember CD clubs? Same thing, but with cookbooks. I chose this. I’m pretty sure a decade passed before I was ready to use it, but it’s a nice full-color book (not with every recipe) with tasty smoothies. Sub out what you will and make ’em your own.
Sorbets and Ice Creams: And Other Frozen Confections by Lou Seibert Pappas (1997) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I scream, you scream! We all want to make ice cream from this book. This book has a variety of flavors. Yes, some are more hands-on than others and some are a little fancier (hello, Coffee Bean Ice Cream with Bittersweet Fudge Sauce). You won’t lack for variety.
The Southern Heritage Cakes Cookbook (1983) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’d hate to tell you what I paid for this cookbook, for you will turn green with envy. I would have gladly paid more, however, as it is fantastic. For cookbook reader types, wow! This is one awesome read. I’m not southern. While I lived for a year and a half or so IN the south (Goose Creek, SC), my husband was in the Navy and we were young (aka flat broke) so we didn’t really get to try much in the way of southern cooking. And, honestly, the white pizza and everything pizza at Pies On Pizza in Goose Creek was so incredible, I’m not sure we would have tried anywhere else, even if we’d had the money. If we did have money to throw around, I’d like to think we would have found somewhere to eat that would feature cakes like the kind in this cookbook. Oxmoor House Publishing and Southern Living are behind this cookbook (even if it doesn’t say such things in the title). Cakes I’ve never heard of, stories, vintage advertising, color photos and illustrations to go along with them will keep you reading long after your bedtime.
Southern Living 2007 Annual Living Recipes (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I’ll be honest–I’m bypassing the boiled peanuts and grits recipes. But the rest of the cookbook appeals to me.All of the recipes from the 2007 Southern Living magazine are included. No-cook lemonade pies are calling my name. Doesn’t that sound refreshing? The 2007 cook-off recipe winners are listed here too. That’s over 900 recipes on just over 360 pages. Woot!
Southern Living Classic Southern Desserts (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Aw, look at the sweet green gingham background and the delicious images of desserts peppering the front cover. It kind of makes the cookbook walk to the checkout counter all on its own. Good thing the desserts inside, like the Triple Decked Strawberry Cake, the Chocolate Almond Petite Fours,
Southern Living Incredible Chocolate Recipes (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Chocolate. Do you really need more than that? The recipes in here were chosen from past issues of Southern Living magazine. It’s a great way to get the best of the best in an easy to store format.
Specialties of the House: A Country Inn and Bed and Breakfast Cookbook by Julia Pitkin (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
More than 690 bed and breakfasts shared recipes for this large cookbook. Brief intros provide some interesting tidbit about the inn, while the recipes vary from basic muffins to more complicated dinners. It’s a great cookbook to read (and one I already baked from).
The Splendid Table’s How To Eat Supper: Recipes, Stories, and Opinions from Public Radio’s Award-Winning Food Show by Lynne Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Cookbooks like this don’t come along every day. Since I picked up an autographed copy (!!!) by chance at a used bookstore, this cookbook has been hard for me to put down. From library to bedside to kitchen, back to the library, only to be needed and moved back to the kitchen…well, The Splendid Table HTES cookbook has spent more time off the shelf than on it. Excellent food facts (seriously, the kids loved them too), stories featuring the memorable to the bizarre (so memorable in a totally different way), to some of the best recipes you’ll ever find make this an indispensable kitchen resource. Susan, I don’t know who you are, or how you could ever ditch this cookbook, but thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!
Stay for Supper from the Editors of Country Home Magazine (1993) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
More than 200 recipes and images are in this excellent, EXCELLENT cookbook. I made the peanut butter -streusel coffee cake twice in one week. I knew this would be a great cookbook when I saw it sitting on the shelf of the local thrift store. With illustrations and some full-color images, I just know you will love this one too.
The Steak Book by Arthur Hawkins (1966) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Steak! If it’s steak for diner, this cookbook is for YOU! And you, and you, and YOU! More than sixty recipes are contained therein and man, oh, man do they sound good. Add a smattering of beverage suggestions and a recipe that makes coffee with egg shells (you’ve seen that before, right?) and you’ve got a nice little book.
Steaks, Chops, Ribs & Roasts (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We get on grilling kicks. Then it seems as if my husband is constantly firing up the grill last minute and we are hurriedly searching for something new to prepare. This cookbook ends the recipe-hunting hubbub. It’s a little fancier compared to the usual grilled items but a nice change of pace when we feel like something special.
Sticky, Chewy, Messy, Gooey: Desserts for the Serious Sweet Tooth by Jill O-Connor (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Cookies, cakes, pie, and everything in-between tempt you to mess up your clean kitchen once again. The chapter on puddings intrigues me. I get on pudding kicks, making pudding as our family dessert for a week, sometimes two, trying all manner of recipes, before I grab a bowl, and tackle something else. One more thing: raspberry rhubarb Monte Cristo sandwiches. See what I did there? Who can resist such a thing?
Southern Living Incredible Cookies (2000) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
I make cookies every few days. The oldest would live on chocolate chip cookies if he could. They are the only cookie he requests. The youngest isn’t much better, alternating between a handful of favorites. He is, however, always excited to try a new cookie recipe. The inside cover pic had me sold. Do grab a copy with a book jacket. Although the book cover is nice, it would blend into any cookbook collection.
Southern Living Party Cookbook: Complete Menus and Entertaining Guide by Celia Marks and the Editors of Southern Living Magazine (1972) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
To: Sus, From Mom. 12-12-2919 (Almost!). Aw, Sus. Why did you give up such a great cookbook with such a cute inscription? What can the 1970s bring to the table? Turns out–plenty. These are menus that won’t be read simply for nostalgia’s sake. These are do-able with recipes that will still entice your guests today.
Sunrise Cookbook: Recipes from the Kitchens of Indianapolis Chefs and the WTHR Family (2008) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My cookbook has a different cover (white with blue and four people standing in a row in aprons) but it seems to be the same thing. I live in Indiana, so I enjoy finding Hoosier-themed cookbooks. Since I also enjoy eating in Indianapolis, and lived there in my early twenties and am not too far away now, snagging recipes for familiar places is awesome.
Sunset Scandinavian Cook Book (1975) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Taste the dishes of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland. The table of contents includes the type of categories you would expect, but the “Special Features” section adds a bit of fun. Learn about the Lucia Festival, the Finnish coffee smorgasbord, and how to create a smorrebrod buffet for six.
Sushi Made Easy by Kumfoo Wong (2001) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
The oldest has an interest in making sushi, so I’m happy to find another book to use as a reference. While I wish the font were bigger, Sushi Made Easy is a beautiful book with clear images and illustrations explaining the steps to making sushi.
Sushi: Taste and Techniques by Kimiko Barber and Hiroki Takemura (2002) (AMAZON)(EBAY)
Some sushi books are so into technique they are not for beginners or people who don’t have hours to spend in the kitchen. Not this one. Yes, there are recipes for whole fish sushi, but there are plenty of other more approachable recipes. If you love sushi, you really can make it at home.
Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones: 90 Recipes for Making Your Own Ice Cream and Frozen Treats from Bi-Rite Creamery by Kris Hoogerhyde, Anne Walker, and Daney Gough (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
San Francisco’s Bi-Rite Creamery owners believe in sharing. Isn’t that the best? Rather than hoarding their beloved small-batch, homemade ice cream recipes, they published a cookbook. Making your own ice cream isn’t complicated with the detailed instructions accompanying each recipe.
Sweet Serendipity: Delightful Desserts and Devilish Dish by Stephen Bruce with Brett Bara (2004) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Do I have this cookbook for the recipes or for the stories? This time, the answer is both! What a read! Recipes and gossip from Serendipity 3, a New York restaurant and boutique known for luscious desserts and as a celebrity hot spot.
The Swiss Cookbook by Nika Standen Hazelton (1981) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
A SWISS cookbook? Swiss?!?! Yes, please! When winter gets to us, around the time when the holidays are all over, and months of cold stretch ahead — I’ll start planning week long themes. A Swiss theme sounds great and, judging from the inside of this cookbook, should be tons of fun cooking too.
“T” – “V” Cookbooks
The Table Comes First: Family, France, and the Meaning of Food by Adam Gopnik (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Part history, part philosophy, this book is all about food in France. The opening page is quite possibly the best opening page in a book about food that I have ever read. It stays with you.
Taste of Home: Most Requested Recipes (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
New cooks and bakers will appreciate the way every recipe is accompanied by an image. Isn’t that nice? There are ten different sections and over 400 recipes. It will keep you busy fo’ sure.
Taste of Home: Winning Recipes: 645 Recipes from National Cooking Contests (2007) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Winner, winner, chicken dinner! These are the best of the best of the best. If you need recipes in a cookbook so you know what’s going down, this would be a good choice for your kitchen. Every recipe includes an image, along with the name, intro, and location of the person who submitted the prize-winner.
Toll House Heritage Cookbook: A Collection of Favorite Dessert Recipes (1984) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Corrections are stapled in at the front of my cookbook from the publisher. The former owner had a few dessert clippings tucked inside. I’m eager to try this version of chocolate mousse and the chocolate sandwich cookies. Truthfully, there are very few recipes I don’t want to try out from cookbook.
Tom Douglas’ Seattle Kitchen: A Food Lover’s Cookbook and Guide by Tom Douglas (2001) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We lived just outside Seattle just after we were married (thanks to the Navy). I can’t help but grab any good Seattle- or Washington-related cookbook I find. Okay, technically I do the same with good restaurant or chef cookbooks too. Who doesn’t want a peek into a working kitchen and the recipes that go with it? It’s instructional too, with photos accompanying things like how to clean a cooked crab or how to roll up an apple dumpling. This will be the book I turn to for the next “fancy dinner” we cook as a family. My copy is even signed! Yay!
The Top One Hundred Chinese Dishes by Kenneth H. Lo (1992) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Normally you would maybe consider books without images a drawback…but this Chinese cookbook includes color illustrations with all of the recipes (but not necessarily OF the recipes). I like it just the same. Most of the ingredients are pantry things I keep on hand anyway so I can get in the kitchen and try just about any of the recipes without a problem.
Triple Slow Cooker Entertaining: 100 Plus Recipes and 30 Party Plans by Kathy Moore and Roxanne Wyss (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Parties are made easy with triple slow cookers. Celebrate holidays or special events with the menus in the front of the book. If you, like me, lack a triple slow cooker, use what you have.
Vintage Cakes: Timeless Recipes for Cupcakes, Flips, Rolls, Layer, Angel, Bundt, Chiffon, and Icebox Cakes for Today’s Sweet Tooth by Julie Richardson (2012) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Baker & Spice owner, Julie Richardson, bought a bakery with a collection of recipes she had shoved in the attic while remodeling her bakery. When she decided to write about vintage cakes, she turned to that attic collection and began receiving recipes from other people who heard about the project. Julie got to work, fine-tuning the recipes to compile this sweet cake book.
Watkins Hearthside Cook Book (1952) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Great googly moogly, I love this cookbook! The illustrations are so good. And in color! I even like the recipes. Everything about this cookbook is an A++. It’s even spiral-bound.
What’s Cooking: Baking (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Tired of squinting at too small images? What’s Cooking: Baking has large full-page images with each recipe. Even the most noob baker will be able to follow along with ease. From cookies to cakes to other baked items, like croissants, this book boasts the usual suspects and the occasional welcome surprise.
While the Pasta Cooks: 100 Recipes So Easy You Can Prepare the Sauce in the Time it Takes to Cook the Pasta by Andrew Schloss with Ken Bookman (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Some would say there is only so much Chicken Alfredo you can make, before you need to branch out a bit. Point taken. Get out of the pasta rut. From the usual sauces, like Quick Fresh Tomato Sauce to the more unique, like Lemon Tomato Sauce with Feta, to whole sections with nary a tomato in sight, where will you begin? You might find me at the Creamy Herby Spinach Sauce or the Cheddar, Ham, and Broccoli Sauce which kind of sounds made for a baked potato, with a little recipe tweakin’.
The Whimsical Bakehouse Collection: Little Cakes and Kids’ Cakes by Kaye Hansen and Liv Hansen (2010) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What a darling little cookbook! Okay, maybe not little, but it is so cheery and joyful. This is a complication of two previous cookbooks, Little Cakes and Big Cakes, all from the Whimsical Bakehouse. These mother-daughter bakers share so many different adorable things you can do with cupcakes and cake in general that’s just FUN. The 3D Christmas trees caught my eye, but I’ pretty sure our youngest is going to try his hand at all the floral cupcake designs. That kid loves to pipe frosting.
Williams-Sonoma Collection: Asian by Farina Wong Kingsley (2004) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Pad Thai, Chicken Satay, Pot Stickers…that’s just the first section! So many favorite things in one book. At least one image goes with each recipe. It’s not a huge book, but it is a great one. It’s Williams-Sonoma, for Goodness’ sake! You kind of expect high quality.
Williams-Sonoma Collection: Savoring France: Recipes and Reflections on French Cooking by Georgeanne Brennan (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This is a tall, odd-sized cookbook — and heavy! At almost 4 1/2 pounds, it is packed with images, recipes, and interesting tidbits about France. Flipping through as I write, well, the salads are even gorgeous. It maintains that drool-worthy capability throughout with well-written recipes.
Williams-Sonoma Collection: Savoring Pasta and Rice: Best Recipes fro the Award-Winning International Cookbooks (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Who loves her pasta? The youngest and I! Who is obsessed with rice? The oldest! Who doesn’t have a strong opinion? Husband! Put that all together and this books checks a lot of boxes. Part history book and part cookbook, it’s a weighty volume made for cuddling up with in front of the fireplace. I mean, I basically eat my weight in pasta when the temps dip down, so I might as well expand my repertoire (and not just the size of my pants).
Williams-Sonoma Simple Classics Cookbook (1996) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
This beautiful cookbook is a combination of three earlier titles: Simple Italian Cooking, Simple French Cooking, and Simple American Cooking. While the emphasis may be on simple meals, they are anything but boring. Mediterranean tuna salad, chicken and sweet potato,
The Wine Lover’s Cookbook: Great Recipes for the Perfect Glass of Wine by Sid Goldstein (1999) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Wine and food pairing can be intimidating. This cookbook lists a fab recipe and then provides a recommended wine and an alternative wine to go with it. The author has a “wine-first” approach. He considers what wine to serve and how best to highlight it. If you are wine shy, give this book a try.
The Woman’s Day Everyday Cookbook: 365 Tasty Recipes and Monthly Menus for the Whole Year (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Did I really need another general cookbook? After flipping through the pages of this one, well, yes, I found I did. These are generally unfussy recipes with an image next to each one (so it’s extra good for beginners). The monthly menu plan arrangement is unique and useful.
Woman’s Day Book of Baking (1977) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
We can all use a bit of clear direction, right? Classic recipes and thoughtful instructions make it a book worth having. Even with its lack of images and illustrations. You won’t even miss them.
Wonderful Ways to Prepare Crepes and Pancakes (1979) by Jo Ann Shirley (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Our oldest loves to make waffles. Our youngest loves to make pancakes. I enjoy making crepes! This cookbook meets all our needs. It’s a paperback cookbook, no images, but border illustrations on each page help knock out some of the plain vibe. Oh, and there are even savory recipes in here. Interesting stuff. I know we will make good use of this cookbook.
Writers in the Kitchen: Children’s Book Authors Share Memories of their Favorite Recipes: Featuring Marion Dane Bauer, Ashley Bryan, Eve Bunting, Betsy Byars, Jamie Lee Curtis, Sid Fleischman, Lois Lowry, Emily Arnold McCully, Barry Moser, Jerry Spinelli, and more… (1998) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Writers! Well, yeah, of course I needed this library book sale book! In our family, we “always bring a book.” In elementary school, that meant Betsy Byars and Eve Bunting, James Howe (Bunnicula!), and Joan Lowery Nixon to name a few. Each recipe, sent in by a children’s book author, also mentions a couple of the books the author wrote. There’s a story about the recipe and even a few creative reasons why an author couldn’t submit a recipe.
“Y” and “Z” Cookbooks
The Yan Can Cook Book: A Chinese Cookbook by the Author of “The Joy of Wokking” by Martin Yan (1981) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My copy is a paperback book but with the black hardcover cover. I have already used this cookbook and I am so glad I made this purchase. We are looking forward to more recipes from Yan! Yes, Yan can cook but so can I.
You Deserve Dessert! Member Recipes Cooking Club of America (2011) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
All the 253 recipes in this book hail from Cooking Club of America members. While I take issue with the title (as though dessert is something to feel guilty about), I do enjoy the contents inside. Each recipe has the member’s name and city. I like seeing where people are from, don’t you? Dessert lovers, skip the guilt, and make yourself a darn good dessert. This book is a good place to begin.
Zingerman’s Guide to Good Eating by Art Weinzweig (2003) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
What is it that makes one cookbook catch your eye over another? I’d say color is involved, but then I see how many perfectly boring cookbook covers I possess, and I’m at a loss. In the case of Zingerman’s, the bright yellow probably did help. Couple that with the illustrations, and I was completely, totally sold before I cracked the book open. But inside? It’s good story and great story, reasons behind why some things work a certain way, and a little history too. Some of the food-related facts here or there might be outdated, but that won’t take away from your enjoyment of this one. Basically, it’s all the things I love about a cookbook.
Blank Recipe Binders
Gooseberry Patch Favorite Recipe Collection (AMAZON) (EBAY)
My copy is a binder (no spiral). Inside, there are photo album style pages. The link heads to the closest copy I can find. Mine was a gift from my mother eons ago so goodness knows how she found it.
My Betty Crocker Notebook (1937) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
First published in 1909, then renewed in 1937, this fill-in-the-blank binder is adorable in aqua and blue. My copy still has the original notebook pages and item dividers. While I was hoping to find recipes penned inside, my copy contains tidy hand-written pages of tongue twisters! I wasn’t expecting that.
Strawberry Shortcake Favorite Recipes (1979) (AMAZON) (EBAY) — I was all about Strawberry Shortcake as a kid. I’d break out my Fisher Price record player and listen to the books. I still remember parts of the recording today. Printed in Hong Kong for the American Greeting Corp., it’s a cute little fill-in-your-own recipes book complete with tabs for different sections.
My Favorite Recipes Cookbook by Gooseberry Patch (2006) (AMAZON) (EBAY)
Headings include: Title, Servings, Ingredients, and Instructions. Page edges indicate whether a recipe is a main course, dessert, salad, with empty pages for customization. Some blank pages also include a related quote and illustration. It’s spacious enough to accommodate my large, sloppy handwriting.
My Recipes by National Blank Book Co., Inc (1960s) (AMAZON) (EBAY) My copy is red but I can’t seem to find it online. The links go to closely matched copies (but yellow and with slightly different covers). It’s so cute. This blank recipe binder offers various tabs. Each tabbed section is attached to an envelope for clippings and offers up advice on whatever the section. Insert your own paper and fill ‘er up.
Learn About These Cookbook Authors or Cookbook-Related Resources
- All About Farm Journal Editor and Cookbook Author Nell B. Nichols
- Why I Write in My Cookbooks (and Why You Should Too)
- Farm Journal Cookbooks for Your Country Kitchen
- Maida Heatter: Her Life & Cookbooks
- Plain and Simple Amish Cookbooks
- Marguerite Patten: First BBC Female TV Cook, Prolific Cookbook Author
- Martha Dixon’s Copper Kettle Cookbook