5 Simple Cookbooks to Build On

Rachel over at Small Notebook blogged about her Absolute Favorite Cookbook yesterday and I wanted share my collection of favorites today.

As much as I love looking for recipes online, I am also growing fond of a number of cookbooks that I have been collecting over the past year. Mostly because these cookbooks are pretty simple and easy to follow, especially for novice cooks like me. That and there is something about the authors that inspire me. Their love for good food and cooking shows through.   And that is an element that I could always use in the kitchen: inspiration. 

The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution

Here, Waters walks you through the essentials starting with basic sauces, salads, bread, broth, and then guides you through the basic techniques such as simmering, roasting, grilling, slow-cooking, frying and of course wraps it all up with simply yummy desserts. This one is a no-frills cookbook, no glossy pictures. Just simple food at your finger tips.

The Way to Cook

 I am still waiting for my copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking from the library so I can’t really compare both cookbooks, but this one is pretty comprehensive. Julia Child really educates you about everything you could possibly want to cook in the kitchen! Or at least it feels like to me. Which being the rookie cook that I am, is the next best thing to actually going to cooking class. With a world class cook for a teacher.

The EatingWell Healthy in a Hurry Cookbook

I love this cookbook. 150 recipes you can cook in 45 minutes or less! The editors draw from a wide variety of cuisines, which I love: North African Orange and Lamb Kebabs, Beer-Battered Tilapia with Mango Salsa (I love mangoes!), Chicken Sausage and Kale Stew, Thai Chicken Satay and more!!!! They also transform your not-so healthy favorite dishes to something healthier, like the Almond Crusted Chicken Fingers.

Simply in Season Expanded Edition (World Community Cookbook)

This book was given to me by a friend from church, and it so lives up to its title. The recipes are grouped by seasons: Sugared Asparagus in Spring, Italian Zucchini Pie in Summer, Red Lentil Coconut Curry in Autumn and Marrakesh Lamb Stew in Winter. What I love most are the short snippets peppered throughout the book on food sustainability and the spiritual dimension of our food choices.

Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats

This books is in the process of changing my life. I’m still reading through it and munching on it. Raw milk, butter, cheese, grass-fed beef, soaked grains, sprouted grains, and so much more. It makes your head spin. But who doesn’t want more butter in their life? Not me. This book, I’m keeping.

What about you? What are your absolute favorite cookbooks and why?

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  1. Alex says

    I have lots of cookbooks with fascinating recipes calling for ingredients that I would almost always have to run to the store for. For every day cooking using what you have at hand, you need a cookbook that is more like a reference manual. Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything is exactly that. I probably look at it every time I cook a meal. My husband learned how to cook out of this book. Also, each recipe has variations, so that you can adapt it to what you’re want to cook. Bittman’s more recent book, How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, is also excellent for meat-eaters and vegetarians. It has more recipes for healthy whole grains and vegetables than the original book, but it somewhat harder to navigate because there are sooo many variations on the recipes.

  2. Vina Barham says

    How have I not responded to this yet? Well Alex, I’m definitely checking out Mark Bittman’s How To Cook Everything. I love reference manual type cookbooks! Thank you for the tip!

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