More cookbooks! You need more cookbooks! Said my boyfriend. Never. But that’s OK. Because I DO need more cookbooks. Can you ever have enough? Probably, maybe. Well not me. And 2015 was a great year for cookbooks. Here’s part 2 of my cookbook roundup.
Like Part 1 of my Best Cookbooks of 2015 roundup, I’m giving away a few awesome cookbooks (FOUR this time), so stick around to the end of the post for instructions on how to enter.
[THIS COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED.]
I cannot tell you enough about how much I adore my friend Shauna Sever, the Next Door Baker. I was insanely sad to see her move away from San Francisco (she’s no longer MY next door baker!) but I know that I can pick up here book Real Sweet and read pretty much any page and it’s like she’s here again, dishing with me about all the gossip and dirt on the food blogging world. Her latest book tackles natural unrefined sweeteners like honey, molasses, muscavado, molasses and coconut sugar. Each recipe really amplifies and uses the sweeteners to play up the flavor profile of each different ingredient. It’s pretty brilliant if you ask me, because white refined sugar can be pretty one note sweet while something like honey can push and pull in so many different directions. Her next level chocolate chip cookies look pretty fantastic because she uses Turbinado sugar to give it a bit of crunch and texture and don’t get me started on her Toblerone Tart which has a honey meringue in it. What?!? I’m in love. Damn you Shauna for leaving me in this city all alone. I guess I’m going to have to comfort myself with another serving of your little plum, walnut and maple cake.
I’m a big fan of teaching folks the basics and letting them run with it. Russell Van Kraayenburg of the blog Chasing Delicious feels the same way. His book Making Dough not only explains what the different ratios of butter, flour and eggs that go into basic doughs like puff pastry, pie crust and scones so you can make your own desserts but he includes recipes for Cranberry Pistachio Braided Brioche Loaf or Apple Tart Layer Cake. If you’re a novice in the kitchen or looking to learn a little bit more about how to make your own dough for your own recipes, Russell’s book is the one for you.
Giana Ferguson’s Gubbeen is not just an everyday cookbook. It’s the story of their Gubbeen Farm as well as a collection of recipes based on the products they make at the farm, from their award winning cheese to their cured meats and more. With detailed photos on how to makes things like Chorizo to how to test for coagulation in homemade farm cheese, this is the book every DIY homesteader needs. But even if the idea of making cheese or sausage isn’t your thing, recipes like Pulled Pork with Celery Root Remoulade Sandwich or Mattie’s Cauliflower Gubbeen Ravioli are enticing all on their own.
I not only live on the west coast but I also love to road trip so Sunset magazine’s Eating Up the West Coast is basically tailored made for me. But even if you don’t live in California, Oregon or Washington, the cookbook is super fun. With various road trip itineraries (with an obvious focus on places to eat), this book is packed with information on not only awesome places to visit, but recipes from each stop. New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro in Talent Oregon provided Truffled Cheese Tortellin, while Bell Street Farm in Los Alamos California has a great recipe for Roast Pork Sandwiches with Apple-Jicama Slaw and Pickled Onions. With stories from each stop as well as solid and easy-to-make recipes, this cookbook is a winner for all of us who love a good roadtrip or love west coast food.
Flavorful is a solid baking cookbook. Tish Boyle takes staple baking ingredients like vanilla, chocolate, caramel and fruit and organizes her recipes in terms of these flavors. Classic recipes like raspberry swirled cheesecake and orange scented madeleines as well as fun flavor combinations like Double Espresso Panna Cotta with Sambuca Cream make for solid approachable recipes. Her twenty-layer vanilla cream crepe cake sounds pretty heavenly and her Chocolate Glazed Peanut Butter Mousse Cake looks pretty decadent. Don’t expect super innovative “out there” recipes but expect all-star favorites that stand the test of time.
I go up to Portland, Oregon every year to cover the Feast Portland event and I’m always thrilled to see Olympia Provisions there. One of my favorite supplies and makers of American Charcuterie, their cookbook, Olympia Provisions by Elias Cairo and Meredith Erickson doesn’t disappoint. Though you certainly need to be an enthusiastic meat cure lover to create most of the recipes in the book (most folks don’t have space or equipment like a fermentation chamber or hanging rack) it’s still one of those books that make you realize the labor of love behind each sausage and salumi. The back of the book is filled with recipes like bratwurst gravy, pork pistachio pate sandwich and braised beef shortribs, some approachable and some a little more advanced. For the hardcore enthusiast, this book is a definite must have.
Right now my pal Jocelyn Delk Adams is killing it with her first cookbook Grandbaby Cakes based on her blog Grandbaby Cakes. She is EVERYWHERE. And it’s no wonder as her cookbook is a killer one. With stories about her family and loved ones interspersed with classic and modern recipes inspired by family recipes, this cookbook is the classic example of what I love about a great cookbook. These recipes aren’t just about making a great dish or dessert (though that has a lot to do with it too). It’s about making food that you love with the people you love. Whether it’s a Mississippi Mudslide cake or a Red Velvet S’mores Cake these recipes are there for you just like they were there for Jocelyn and her family.
Magpie by Holly Cicciardi with Miriam Harris is the sort of dedicated pie cookbook that I love. With the first 40 pages dedicated to just making pie crust and what you should do to make the perfect pie crust, I knew I would love it. As I delved deeper into the book, I loved the recipe ideas like Breakfast Oatmeal Pie and Cookies and Cream Pie. There’s even a chapter on savory pies in the back, which featured recipes like summer squash pie and cheeseburger pie. If pies are your thing, this solid fun cookbook is the one for you.
Of course, if you love savory pies, check out Ken Haedrich’s Dinner Pies cookbook. Filled with recipes like Salmon, Smoked Cheddar, and Dill to Shrimp Pot Pies to Tuscan-Style Pork Turnovers, there’s 100 savory pies perfect for dinner. I have both of Ken’s other pie books and this one is as great as his previous efforts. Being a huge fan of savory pies (Chicken pot pie is one of my go-to comfort foods), I’m excited to explore this book and all it has to offer.
There is something quite stunning about The Violet Bakery Cookbook by Claire Ptak. The photos are gorgeous in that austere and precious way, with it’s matte finish paper. But once you dive deep into the book, you realize it’s not just surface beauty and distant preciousness in the book but something more. With a focus on beautiful simple ingredients, recipes like loganberry-vanilla birthday cake turns something basic into something extraordinary. Quince ice cream seems like a revelation to me (why haven’t I thought of making quince, the ancient cousin to apples and pears into an ice cream before?) and her Apricot kernel upside-down cake just looks beautiful. Claire started at Alice Water’s Chez Panisse before moving to London and then opening up her own bake shop and the ingredients driven recipes makes this cookbook one I’ll turn to again and again.
The oversized Hartwood cookbook by Eric Werner and Mya Henry (with Christine Muhlke and Oliver Strand) is the sort book comfortable on both the coffee table and in the kitchen. With gorgeous photography of dishes from the Yucatan as well as recipes from that area of Mexico, this book explore a rich culture and life that I’ve always been fascinated with. More than just a collection of recipes, this book is like a visit to the Yukatan, a part of Mexico in the southeast corner, near Guatamala and Belize. Luscious recipes like Blistered Plátanos with Honey and Slow-Grilled Pork Belly with Cacao Beans and Melon de Milpa beckon with each page turn. Contemporary updates to classic recipes like Chamomile Flan with Candied Peanuts or Maya Prawns with Chipotle Mezcal Sauce make me want to immediately head to the kitchen and start cooking. But the beautiful photos and stories about the rich culture and life make me want to curl up in bed and continue reading.
Sweet Middle East by Anissa Helou explores a different part of the world, one that I personally hadn’t thought too much about in terms of desserts. Sure I’ve had the occasional baklava but there is so much more to that region of the world and the sweets you can find there. From rose water and mastic ice cream to Syrian semolina and nut cake to braided sesame pastries to Arabian sponge cake, this little cookbook has it all. I’m looking forward to exploring the earth and sweet and spicy desserts that I wasn’t familiar with, as well as learning more about these desserts.
If armchair culinary travel is what you are looking for, Near & Far by Heidi Swanson, the fabulous woman behind the lifestyle blog 101 Cookbooks is what you need for your next read. With her signature evocative photography and beautiful recipes, Near & Far focuses on living here in Northern California and San Francisco, Heidi’s hometown as well as her travels to Morocco, France, India, Italy and Japan. Her vegetarian recipe are simple to execute but never basic. Dishes like Grilled Porcini has her making a simple salsa verde to cover the sauté mushrooms while her Nori Granola is a unique Japanese influenced take on the standard granola. Entering Heidi’s world is like wrapping a warm cashmere scarf around your cold shoulders. Comfortable, slightly luxurious and yet so soft and relaxing. No need to get your passport renewed or deal with TSA, just pick up Near & Far and travel along with her.
[THIS COOKBOOKS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED. THANK YOU EVERYONE WHO ENTERED!]
That’s it for today’s cookbook roundup. Check out yesterday’s cookbook roundup and giveaway (if you haven’t already) and check back tomorrow for another round of awesome cookbooks as well as another giveaway for cookbooks. And now for details on how to win a few of these books! COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY!
I’m giving away a copy of Dinner Pies, Making Dough, Near & Far and Sweet Middle East to one lucky reader of Eat the Love! It’s easy to enter, all you need to do is leave a comment below telling me the favorite cookbook and why! I love learning about new cookbooks and maybe you guys have a favorite that I missed? Tell me what it is (and maybe why you like it) and you could win those four cookbooks! You have until Wednesday, December 23nd, 2015 9am PST to enter! (Only one entry per person please.) The Fine Print
By leaving a comment below to enter, you are agreeing to the Official Rules.
▪ NO PURCHASE NECESSARY
▪ VOID WHERE PROHIBITED
▪ You must be over the age of 18.
▪ This contest is only open to U.S. Citizens. Sorry non-US people!
▪ The contest starts as of today, and will run until Wednesday, December 23nd, 2015, 9am PST.
▪ The combined retail value of everything is about $104.84.
▪ Only one entry per person please. Any additional comments by the same person will be discarded in the final selection process.
▪ The winner will be chosen by a randomly selected comment. All comments will be numbered and I will use Random.org to pick a random number.
▪ The number of eligible comments below determines the odds of winning.
▪ If there’s a problem with contacting the winner, I reserve the right to award everything to someone else randomly chosen. So in other words, make sure you type in your correct email address if you want the books and respond within 72 hours to me when I contact you or I’ll give everything to someone else.
▪ The prize is being delivered directly from the publishers. If they have not delivered the prize to you within three weeks of me notifying you of winning, please reach out to me again and I will do follow up to make sure everything is OK. Please keep in mind we are all human and things happen. I will do everything within my power to make sure the prize is delivered in a timely manner.
Thank you to Artisan, Chronicle Books, Harvard Common Press, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Kyle Books, Oxmoor House/Time Inc, Running Press, Ten Speed Press, Surrey Books/Agate Publishing, Quirk Books and William Morrow for providing review copies of the cookbooks above. All books were sent to me free of charge for review but there was no obligation to feature them and I was not monetarily compensated for this post. All opinions are my own and not endorsed by the publishers.
An extra special thank you to Chronicle Books, Harvard Common Press, Quirk Books, Ten Speed Press for providing copies of Dinner Pies, Making Dough, Near & Far and Sweet Middle East as a giveaway to one lucky reader! You guys totally rock!
Arthur in the Garden! says
I would love to read Ken Haedrich’s Dinner Pies but one of my favorites.
A cook book I recommend to everyone is Alice Mendrich’s Bittersweet. Her cocoa brownies are the best!
My fav cookbook is aromas of Aleppo
Beth R. says
I love the cookbooks by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, but I also fell in love with America’s Test Kitchen’s Complete Vegetarian Cookbook.
Ashley Steele says
Mark Bittman- how to cook everything. It is a fantastic everyday cook book. We’ve also really been loving Bobby Flay’s BBQ addiction.
Sandy Rees says
It’s next to impossible to choose a favorite. I love my gooseberry Patch cookbooks. Then there’s the old standby: Better Homes and Gardens. Or a new favorite: Grandbaby Cakes.
Ruhlman’s Twenty. I appreciate the quality of the writing and it has taught me a lot.
A favorite? That is such a challenge! Usually when I want to try something new, I will look through my Cook’s Illustrated and America’s Test Kitchen books. They are always reliable and produce something tasty!
My favorite cookbook is David Lebovitz’s The Perfect Scoop, which I first learned how to make ice cream and the recipes are for me, tried, true and delicious.
Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day.
I have been having fun with The Geeky Chef Cookbook by Reeder. Food is fun and so her approach to her recipes from media.
I have a ton of cookbooks and as a baker/caterer, I normally pick a favorite baking book, but I recently bought Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian and I love it. So inclusive and inspirational and easy!
My favorite cookbook is usually the one I’m currently cooking from. On of those from this past year is Seven Spoons.
My newest favorite cookbook is Farmhouse Rules by Nancy Fuller. Allll of the recipes I’ve tried are full of comfort and they’re delicious!
Brittany Koelmel says
My favorite cookbook would probably be Just One Cookbook!! I love all her recipes.
Betsy Cooks says
The Mission Chinese Cookbook. Danny Bowien’s story is as wonderful as the recipes.
Hi! My most recent favorite is Huckleberry by Zoe Nathan!
This year, my fave cookbook was The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime. The pictures alone make you wanna start up the oven!
Elle @ Only Taste Matters says
Sally’s Candy Addiction by Sally McKenney of SallysBakingAddiction.com
My favorite cookbook is Pok Pok since it gave me the tools I need to make some dishes that my wife loves and misses.
My favorite go-to cookbook is by Martha Wadlington and her cookbook is called Martha’s country cookin. I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know her and trying her dishes from the cookbook first hand.
Debbie G says
I love cookbooks…they are taking over my house…oh well. My newest fav is Tacos Recipes and Provocations by Alex Stupak and Jordana Rothman. I just got a new press & will be making a zillion tortillas.
Leslie Goldenberg says
Plenty is my current favorite cookbook. So many delicious flavors & fresh tasting!
I love cookbooks too! My fav right now is Farmhouse Rules by Nancy Fuller. Comfort food at its best.
Marisa Franca @ All Our Way says
The Art and Soul of Baking Sur La Table by Cindy Marchet. This is the one this week. I love cookbooks — they become my friends and I can’t part with them. I love the books by Marcella Hazan. Boy I could go on and on!! I love cooking and I read cookbooks like novels.
My favorite cookbook is Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi
I absolutely love Heidi’s Super Natural Every Day. I regularly buy it for new cooks as a gift. Would looooove to have a copy of her new one.
Francine Long says
My favorite cookbooks to use regularly are the spiral-bound fundraising type with many contributors – often referred to as ‘church cookbooks’ , because they contain treasured family recipes with good old fashioned cooking techniques handed down from past generations.
Joyce Chatman says
My all time favorite are the Calling All Cooks one thru three. I can always find anything I want to cook in these books.
Stephanie Cabe says
Mexico One Plate at a Time, or any cookbook by Rick Bayless. I absolutely love Latin American cuisine, and I have been using his cookbooks for years. Definitely my favorite!
Alison H. says
My current favorite cookbook is SkinnyTaste!
Check out Amanda Hesser’s Cooking for Mr. Latte, if you haven’t already. It is an older cookbook, but I find myself really loving many different recipes from it. When I am looking for a new recipe to try, I’ll peruse many different books, and am always surprised by how often one of the recipes from this book grab my attention. It is always fun to have new books to play with though, so I’d love to win these.
My all time favorite cookbook is California Sizzles. On a day to day basis, I like the Cooks Illustrated books.
I do not have a favorite cook but I am a huge fan of Sarah Britton’s My New Roots cookbook that came out this year. All the recipes have been absolutely lovely.
My current favorite is Shauna Ahern’s GF American Classics. I’ve enjoyed recreating some dishes of my childhood (before needing to eat gluten-free) and trying some additional recipes from other parts of the country. It’s a great cookbook for sastisying nostalgic cravings.
I really love Joy the Baker’s cookbooks, The Joy the Baker Cookbook and Homemade Decadence. The recipes are beautiful, but most importantly delicious! (And simple to make – highly recommended along with her blog)
I could have a whole room filled with cookbooks… of every kind. The past year and a half, I’ve been on a cooking journey to heal my Hashimoto’s diagnosis, which I’m happy to report has happened! Mickey Trescott’s The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook was a life saver, game changer, and is filled with delicious recipes! Thank you Irvin for the feasts you prepare for us with every post!
One of my favorite cookbooks is The Complete Asian Cookbook by Charmaine Soloman.
Imane Daher says
One of my favorite Cookbook is Momofuku Milk bar by Christina Tosi and a Lebanese Cookbook written in Arabic by CHef ELrayyess
Aaron Rishell says
Art of simple food. Everything I have made turns out great plus I love Alice Waters.
Absolute favorite cookbook is Jerusalem. I have learned about so many new spices and flavors using this book! The perfect weekend for me is to flip through this book, choose 1 new recipe and spend the afternoon cooking with my boyfriend.
I cook a lot from Simple Thai Food by Leela Punyaratabandhu of She Simmers blog. Great results every time!
My favorite cookbook is Ratio by Michael Ruhlman. It really teaches you about how to cook and bake without following a recipe, allowing you to get creative and make your own recipes.
ed ang says
Call me decadent, but I love Corey Lee’s Benu. I don’t cook a stitch, but I can vicariously imagine that I’m cooking all those incredible dishes…page after page.
I love Helen’s Recipes’ cookbook!
Although it’s not the one I cook from the most, my favorite cookbook is Heritage.
Erin R. says
I’d love to get a look at Dinner Pies and Magpie.
Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison is the book I turn to more than any other. Even though it only has a few photos (and these days I gravitate to those that have lots!) it’s a workhorse in my kitchen.
Jen Chen says
Collards and Carbonara. Its carbonara recipe alone makes it my favourite. Definitely check it out if you have not already!
Tiffany Z says
i’m still enamored by Flour Too – probably because i still haven’t gotten around to making their roasted lamb sandwich. don’t know if i’d call it my favorite, but it’s definitely up there.
claudia harris says
Plenty More is my latest favorite cookbook to get lost in and then take that inspiration with me into the kitchen for more culinary creativity.
I’ve been enjoying Vegan Eats World.
Bess S says
One of my favorite cookbooks is Home Baking by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid. Very interesting recipes and background on the cultures that produced them.
Jasmine L says
My favorite cookbook, er,umm *nervous sweats*
I can’t choose, but I’m currently enjoying Cook with Kindness by Chantal Coolen. What I like about it besides delicious vegan fare and beautiful photos is that many of the 150 recipes utilize some of the same ingredients without feeling repetitive.
Right now, my favorite cookbook is called “My Kitchen Year”. It’s not actually a cookbook, but it includes some great recipes.
The Suzzzz says
That’s tough, I think my used cookbooks are a tie between the Cook This, Not That book (for trying to eat better), and the Les Halles cookbook. Although I do reference the Art of French Cooking volumes frequently as well. Oh and I’ve probably made the brownie recipe from Ad Hoc At Home about 50 million times. Uh, this is turning out to be like trying to pick your favorite child.
Krista Griffin says
I love cookbooks, but I especially love the Pioneer Woman! and her new Dinner Time Cookbook.