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Cookbook - R.R.?

I'm thinking of getting a newbie bride a cookbook for her birthday. Do you suggest Rachel Ray's 365? Let me know what you think is the most affordable, universal cookbook! Thanks in advance.

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  1. How about Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything? It's understandable and easily supplants the new watered-down edition of The Joy Of Cooking.

    1 Reply
    1. re: themis

      I second Bittman. It's basic and advanced, exotic and mundane. It's also good reading. I use it all the time and certainly don't consider myself anything but very competent in the kitchen.

      It's a wonderful book.

    2. Call me crazy, but I'd go with "Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home."

      The point being that for a newbie bride you want to inspire as well as instruct. The recipes are easy to understand with lots of beautiful and instructive pictures and, as a bonus, it clearly shows that there is no one way to cook. Cooking is an art with different interpretations on everything.

      From a simple roast chicken to a holiday meal, this is hard to beat.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jimctgc

        I love that book, and it does seem a little more "special" simply because it's J&J. For what it's worth, the recipes I've tried from it have worked beautifully, and the book is a nice combination of basic techniques and fancy sounding dishes.

      2. Rachael Ray? Ewwww. Only if she's a die-hard RR fan, but in that case, she probably already has the cookbook.

        How about The Best Recipe cookbook? There are actually three - the first one, a revised one, and a light version. They feature classic, traditional American cuisine (roast chicken, meatloaf, apple pie, etc.) with a few modern and ethnic additions. People who like to understand the science of cooking can read the lengthy descriptions of how the best version was perfected, and those who don't can simply skip to the recipe.

        Anne

        1. For a good reference book, the OLD Joy of Cooking.

          For a great meal book, Zuni Cafe.

          1. Bride & Groom First and Forever Cookbook - Barber & Whiteford

            I'm not RR fan myself.

            1 Reply
            1. re: citizenconn

              I've bought this for a few friend's weddings. I really like their approach of learning about food together. Also, it is informative without being either too simple or condescending.