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Author Topic: favourite cookery books  (Read 4775 times)

milla

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favourite cookery books
« on: October 04, 2010, 03:45:42 PM »
I have lots of cookery books; in fact, I would like to write one someday. If I had to get rid of all but three, these are the ones I would keep:
Mediterranean cookery-Claudia Roden
North Atlantic seafood-Alan Davidson
Delia’s happy Christmas-Delia Smith

If I was only allowed to keep one….it would have to be The North Atlantic Seafood!!

Would you like to nominate your own favourites?


Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2010, 05:08:49 PM »
Great topic! I can't wait to see what everyone posts.

This is tricky territory, though. I use epicurious.com most often these days (it's so fast!), but I could never ever get rid of my cookbooks. Sometimes I just like looking through them for all the food porn.

I could also never choose a top 3, so I will just list my favorites, some of which I have owned for more than 30 years:

The Blue Strawbery (no, that is not a typo) by Jame Haller
Vineyard Seasons by Susan Branch
The Barefoot Contessa by Ina Gartner
The Slow Mediterranean Kitchen by Paula Wolford
La Varenne Pratique by Anne Willan
Nourishing Traditoins by Sally Fallon
The Joy of Cooking by Irma and Marion Rombauer
Cooking Light Annual Recipes (1998 collection)
The Spice Cookbook by Avanelle Day and Lillie Stuckey
The New York Times Cookbook by Craig Claiborne

Now that I cannot eat gluten it becomes a little more challenging to make fun recipes, but it just takes a little more planning and work, especially breakfast items.

Tupelo

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2010, 07:06:35 PM »
I have a library of cookbooks, over 200. But my bible is The Good Housekeeping Cookbook.  I think my copy was published in 1972. I learned everything about every day cooking from it, and when my kitchen was on fire in 1979, it's the only thing I grabbed in my flight for the exit. :) The edges of its pages are still smoke gray. Its pages are filled with my notes, because no one ever follows a recipe exactly, right?

It covers everything: what the various cuts of meat (all meats) look like. How to buy them. How much to buy. How to butcher, how to make everything from sausages to canapes for a wedding (or the wedding cake). If I could only have one cookbook, this would be it. I still refer to it every so often, and I'm a graduate of the NY Culinary Institute.

Lord knows what edition it's in now. It's an absolute compendium of food knowledge. I frequently give it as a bridal shower gift.
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makeupmaven

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2010, 07:36:32 PM »
I'm a graduate of the NY Culinary Institute.

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SuePhilly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2010, 07:52:58 PM »
I have a ton of cookbooks, but I don't cook.  I buy them so my boyfriend, a gourmet cook, will make the stuff in the cookbooks.  He often does. 

In fact, Joey designs restaurants.  For example, he's designed three of Emeril's restaurants... not the kitchens (that's a specialty), but the dining areas, etc.  Okay, I'm done bragging now.

In particular, I love recipes Joey prepares from cookbooks by:
Patricia Wells
Donna Hay
Mario Battali

Interestingly, the cookbooks he consults most often are:
Cooking Light (fabulous cookbook)
Joy of Cooking
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Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2010, 07:57:03 PM »
I'm a graduate of the NY Culinary Institute.

Most excellent! So is my little brother, who finally opened up his own restaurant after working for others for the last 15+ years.

I still have the two CIA cookbooks that he gave me back in '92. :D

makinalist

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2010, 10:40:25 PM »
The Joy of Cooking, by far.  I have had mine since 1972.  Some day I will look at a new version to see what has changed.
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cara4art

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2010, 11:05:17 PM »
I have only 5 recipe books, all vegan, but I hardly look at them any more, what with all the raw food websites and recipes. Plus I tend to wing it anyway, even with my simple cooked foods. One can't do that if one bakes though, which I don't any more(after a very brief foray - not my thing at all.)

Cougar

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2010, 12:26:28 AM »
Besides makeup, I collect cookbooks ... 5 shelves.  Can you tell?  I go a leetle overboard?

Where do I go first?  The Joy of Cooking

Where does my sister go first?  Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything
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Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2010, 06:48:53 AM »
The Joy of Cooking, by far.  I have had mine since 1972.  Some day I will look at a new version to see what has changed.

They're probably not pushing squirrel and possum so hard these days.  :wink:

makeupmaven

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2010, 07:41:24 AM »
My favorite thing to make for dinner? Reservations!

Seriously, though, I love my 5 ingredient cookbooks for work days. I don't want anything too complicated and with a maximu of 5 ingredients everything is easy and quick.
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milla

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2010, 01:21:49 PM »
Thank you for all the replies. Zuzu, I even have cookery books by my bed (Elisabeth David and Claudia Roden are my favourites, because it is not just about food, it is all the exciting places and people they write about.
Cougar, I definitely want to come over and be your neighbour!
Tupelo, kitchen on fire? That is scary, I hope nobody got injured.
As for the 'Joy of cooking', I am intrigued... I never heard of that one, but I am going to put it on my Christmas list. Do you think DH or DS will be able to get it on Amazon?

makeupmaven

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2010, 01:26:39 PM »
I just finished reading "I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti" by Giulia Melucci. It's a "memoir" with some simple, authentic Italian recipes. (Warning: Lots of Pasta.)
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Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2010, 02:05:20 PM »
Do you think DH or DS will be able to get it on Amazon?

Absolutely. It's a bible.

Order here.

It gets better reviews on this side of the pond. :wink:

Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2010, 01:43:45 PM »
My go-to cookery books are:

New World Provence by Alessandra and Jean-Francis Quaglia
French Food at Home by Laura Calder
The Eat-Clean Cookbook by Tosca Reno

As you can see, I try to balance my love of French cooking (especially Provencal - Mediterranean) with cleaner, less complicated dishes.  It seems to work!

For just reading but not cooking from, Jane & Michael Stern's "Square Meals".  It covers all the gastronomic delights of 20th century North America from tearooms to diners, victory gardens and nursery comfort foods.  Pure camp.

ddgattina

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #15 on: October 07, 2010, 06:48:34 PM »
If I had to get rid of all but three

That's just cruel! I could ditch 95% of my makeup and skincare, and it would probably be a relief.
But eliminating cookbooks???? That's eliminating inspiration and possibility.  But it's a great question.

I haven't counted, but I have at least 7 (maybe 8) shelves full of cooking books.

Favorites change, but I would buy anything by:

Eric Tucker (amazing vegan chef in SF at Millennium, one of the most creative chefs around.  I recently went to one of his cooking classes, strong-armed into going by the NON-VEG husbands of two friends who both love that restaurant. More than half the people in the class were not vegetarian too.  The Millennium Cookbook and The Artful Vegan create an unbelievable haute vegan cuisine.  I make these recipes for holidays, they are knock you over stunning.  Making me hungry, just to think of that place...)

Marcella Hazan, for Italian.  I only do her vegetarian recipes, but her precision and instruction are completely inspiring.

Martha Rose Shulman for Mediterranean. I've always been extremely happy with the results.

I read cookbooks, just for fun.  I think nothing brings as much long-term joy as a good cookbook!

Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #16 on: October 07, 2010, 10:08:02 PM »




I read cookbooks, just for fun.  I think nothing brings as much long-term joy as a good cookbook!


Yes, it's amazing how inspiring they can be.

Cougar

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #17 on: October 07, 2010, 10:42:33 PM »
DDG has 7 shelves ... I am not alone!

Marcela Hazan is a must.
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Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2010, 07:44:13 AM »
Marcela Hazan is a must.

:ditto:

Best risotto I ever made.

And grilled polenta with braised greens, caramelized onions, and crispy duck confit. :drool:

Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2010, 01:43:41 PM »
I've always heard great things about Marcela Hazan; I will have to check it out next time I'm browsing in the bookstore.  We have a couple of great stores dedicated just to cookbooks in our area, so I'm sure they have a good selection.  ZuZu, that duck confit with braised greens sounds fabulous!

Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2010, 01:57:58 PM »
ZuZu, that duck confit with braised greens sounds fabulous!

Alas, it's not in the cookbook. I was so inspired I went to look up the recipe, but I was denied!

My memory is coming back, and I believe I made that meal based on a meal I had in a restaurant in Connecticut in the mid 90s, maybe Clinton Harbor? A pretty little seaside village. In any case, we had driven down from Bar Harbor and stayed at a B&B so we could see Bryan Ferry in Hartford or New Haven, can't remember. The restaurant was somewhere nearby.

Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #21 on: October 08, 2010, 03:14:54 PM »
It MUST have been a great dish if you remember it from all those years ago!  BTW, I always loved Bryan Ferry.

Kelly

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #22 on: October 08, 2010, 03:44:36 PM »
He was totally sex on wheels that night. :D  It was a memorable weekend all around.

ILuvLucy

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #23 on: October 08, 2010, 05:30:48 PM »
I have a library of cookbooks, over 200. But my bible is The Good Housekeeping Cookbook.  I think my copy was published in 1972. I learned everything about every day cooking from it, and when my kitchen was on fire in 1979, it's the only thing I grabbed in my flight for the exit. :) The edges of its pages are still smoke gray. Its pages are filled with my notes, because no one ever follows a recipe exactly, right?

It covers everything: what the various cuts of meat (all meats) look like. How to buy them. How much to buy. How to butcher, how to make everything from sausages to canapes for a wedding (or the wedding cake). If I could only have one cookbook, this would be it. I still refer to it every so often, and I'm a graduate of the NY Culinary Institute.

Lord knows what edition it's in now. It's an absolute compendium of food knowledge. I frequently give it as a bridal shower gift.
I got this at my shower in 1985, and I'd never part with it!  Though, the poor book itself has seen better days (there's a black ring from where I must've set it on the stove burner), I still refer to it often.

As a Culinary Institute grad, do you have a specialty?
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Tupelo

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #24 on: October 09, 2010, 05:08:57 PM »
I have a library of cookbooks, over 200. But my bible is The Good Housekeeping Cookbook.  I think my copy was published in 1972. I learned everything about every day cooking from it, and when my kitchen was on fire in 1979, it's the only thing I grabbed in my flight for the exit. :) The edges of its pages are still smoke gray. Its pages are filled with my notes, because no one ever follows a recipe exactly, right?

It covers everything: what the various cuts of meat (all meats) look like. How to buy them. How much to buy. How to butcher, how to make everything from sausages to canapes for a wedding (or the wedding cake). If I could only have one cookbook, this would be it. I still refer to it every so often, and I'm a graduate of the NY Culinary Institute.

Lord knows what edition it's in now. It's an absolute compendium of food knowledge. I frequently give it as a bridal shower gift.
I got this at my shower in 1985, and I'd never part with it!  Though, the poor book itself has seen better days (there's a black ring from where I must've set it on the stove burner), I still refer to it often.

As a Culinary Institute grad, do you have a specialty?


I focused on professional culinary arts and classical French cuisine. I hated making pastry and desserts. My efforts were just sad looking. To this day, I buy desserts when I am serving them at home.
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milla

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #25 on: October 10, 2010, 08:50:43 AM »
I focused on professional culinary arts and classical French cuisine. I hated making pastry and desserts. My efforts were just sad looking. To this day, I buy desserts when I am serving them at home.
I am not a desserts person either, so I go for things like tiramisu, triffle etc, which you can put together with (good) shop- bought ingredients.I only do desserts for special occasions,anyway. I normally  have just  fruit. But i have mastered the art of making a shop-bought dessert look like something you have slaved over a hot stove to prepare... :wink:
« Last Edit: October 10, 2010, 09:28:49 AM by Canie »

Tupelo

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #26 on: January 27, 2011, 08:08:47 PM »
I'm not a vegetarian, though I do eat less meat than I was raised to eat, but if anyone is looking for vegetarian recipes, you might try the cookbooks by Brother Victor-Antoine d'Avila-Latourrette.  He's written several and they always stress seasonality and what he can grow or raise himself as the sole monk left at Our Lady of the Resurrection Monastery near Millbrook, New York (so, technically, he's a hermit now, as opposed to a monk).  Not all of the recipes are vegetarian, but a great many of them are.  For instance, in the introduction to Twelve Months of Monastery Soups, he mentions that of the 175 recipes in the book, about 75% are vegetarian and the rest can be easily adapted to become vegetarian (e.g. substituting vegetable broth for chicken broth).  He does, however, use alcohol--sometimes a surprising amount of alcohol--in some of the soups, if that's a concern.  Makes me wonder if he makes his own wine and beer too, as some monks do.

His cookbooks are available at the usual on-line bookstores and at Monastery Greetings - Religious and Spiritual Gifts from Abbeys, Convents, Monasteries, and Hermitages.  Last time I was looking there, at least one of them was on sale--half-price, I think.  From a Monastery Kitchen was a best-seller, so he's not unknown among cookbook authors
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Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #27 on: January 27, 2011, 09:50:52 PM »
Hmm, monastic cooking.  That would definitely appear to be a niche market. :wink:

Tupelo

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #28 on: January 27, 2011, 10:00:53 PM »
Hey, monks are really BIG on food! It's one of their sensual appetites they can satisfy without guilt (when they aren't fasting). They eat in silence, and savor every bite. And the recipes are worthy of archival status. I also love the seasonality of his approach to food prep.
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Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #29 on: January 27, 2011, 10:07:47 PM »
I know; I was only teasing!  :wink:

Tupelo

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #30 on: January 27, 2011, 10:19:25 PM »
 :lol: Sometimes, I wish I was one! Grow my food, tend it, harvest at perfection, and prepare a daily feast. It's a shame this monk is the last of his community, kind of sad that the only way he can share his feasts now is to publish the recipes.
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Une Femme

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Re: favourite cookery books
« Reply #31 on: January 27, 2011, 10:35:18 PM »
Tupelo, that sounds like a dream worth pursuing (without the monk bit).  You obviously treat food and the sharing of it with reverence and who's to say that that's the provenance of monks alone?