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September 2010 Cookbook of the Month Nominations (Through Wed., 8/18)

s
smtucker Aug 10, 2010 07:12 AM

Can you believe that September is just around the corner? The days of summer are passing quickly.

The Cookbook of The Month is open to anyone who wants to participate. Simply make a nomination, then vote and then cook. There are no dues to participate; no secret handshake to learn. Join us!

Please suggest books for us to cook from in September.

But tell us in ALL CAPITALS, if you want your nomination to be counted, please. Nominations will be open until Midnight, EDT on WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 18.

Here is a list of the 48 previous COTM selections (you read that right - we've been doing this for four years!): http://www.chow.com/cookbook_of_the_m...

  1. Tom P Aug 18, 2010 09:22 AM

    AD HOC AT HOME

    1. amyzan Aug 14, 2010 04:25 PM

      Roden's THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN FOOD and ARABESQUE

      I couldn't even find a copy of Plenty to borrow ILL in the United States as of yet. Sounds interesting, though. Ad Hoc at Home would be fine by me, too.

      1 Reply
      1. re: amyzan
        Caitlin McGrath Aug 14, 2010 08:56 PM

        I'll second (third?) THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN FOOD and REVISIT ARABESQUE as a package.

      2. Bada Bing Aug 13, 2010 10:12 AM

        After checking with smtucker--thanks for the counsel!--I want to initiate a conversation about a possible future COTM. I would be very interested in doing Paula Wolfert's *Cooking of Southwest France* sometime perhaps this Winter, when roasted duck and cassoulet and so forth make much sense:

        http://www.amazon.com/Cooking-Southwe...

        Here's the problem: many recipes in that cuisine call for preliminary work (confits) that can take weeks of aging before use. There are also certain ingredients (like duck fat, ideal beans for cassoulet, etc.) that many of us might need some lead time to obtain, but that's often the case in other COTMs.

        Most cookbooks don't need such advance planning, so I'm reluctant to propose that we should advance the timeline of all COTM voting (though, to be frank, I would like more lead time by a week or so).

        Anyway, the first question is: how much interest is there in this book? And if there is interest, what should we do?

        36 Replies
        1. re: Bada Bing
          jen kalb Aug 13, 2010 10:58 AM

          I would certainly be interested
          Im also interested in Wolfert's Clay Pot Cookery book.

          1. re: jen kalb
            bayoucook Aug 13, 2010 11:53 AM

            me too - that one's been on my wish list for ages

            1. re: bayoucook
              LulusMom Aug 16, 2010 03:26 PM

              I'll need to really think this one over to be sure, but given the amount of pork I found in that book, I'd probably be willing to send it along to a fellow chowhound who would appreciate it more than I'm able to. Mine may be slightly scribbled in (trying to find recipes I could actually use) so isn't for the type who loves a pristine book, but ... if I do decide to do so, it would be free. I'm talking about the Cooking of Southwest France here.

              1. re: LulusMom
                Bada Bing Aug 16, 2010 03:49 PM

                You are correct. I took a look in my edition (the first one), and indeed even the poultry dishes and some of the veggie dishes call for pork fat, though at least most of the veggie dishes call for duck/goose fat.

                As I recall from reading the book before, the looming meat and/or fat is duck/goose. But pork fat is in lots of recipes, and of course there are some stand-alone pork entrees.

                1. re: LulusMom
                  bayoucook Aug 17, 2010 01:45 PM

                  If you decide to pass it on, I'll send money for postage!

                  1. re: bayoucook
                    LulusMom Aug 17, 2010 02:16 PM

                    Bayoucook, it is yours. Email me (with chowhound in the title) at kari500 at nc.rr.com. As I mentioned, it isn't in pristine condition, but I'm happy to send it to you gratis. All I ask is that you pass on the love to someone else when you have the chance!

                    1. re: LulusMom
                      bayoucook Aug 24, 2010 07:16 AM

                      Kari - got the book! I see what you meant about the pork, but I love many of the recipes - we love escargot so I'll make several of those recipes. The fatty things will have to be special occasion items for us. Thank you so much. I hope I can return the favor in the future!!

                      1. re: bayoucook
                        LulusMom Aug 24, 2010 08:14 AM

                        My pleasure. I'm very happy that someone is going to get to enjoy it as much as I'd hoped I'd be able to!

              2. re: jen kalb
                bayoucook Aug 13, 2010 11:54 AM

                was it on here: someone posted that buying the book was a breeze compared with what they spend on goods afterward !! funny

                1. re: bayoucook
                  oakjoan Aug 17, 2010 05:19 PM

                  bayoucook: For a Chowhound picnic a couple of years ago I made a jellied beef terrine (Terrine de Boeuf a la Girondine). It took half a day to shop for all the ingredients, pig trotters, fatback, rendered pork fat, etc. It took me 3 days to make it, not all that time was work, though. I did have to lard the meat and didn't want to look for a larding needle. In any case, it was fun to do this once and it was quite delicious and a hit at the picnic sliced up and served with a Creamy Shallot Vinaigrette.

                  I'll never do it again, but it was an adventure!

                  This book also has a marinade that I use at least once a month...it's part of a more complicated recipe, but I just do the marinade for the boneless pork spareribs I get at COSTCO. It's simple yet amazingly tasty and fragrant. I think I already wrote about it long ago, but will be glad to paraphrase.

                2. re: jen kalb
                  roxlet Aug 13, 2010 03:33 PM

                  I'm surprised that there is not a single copy at ABEBOOKS.com

                  1. re: roxlet
                    Bada Bing Aug 13, 2010 03:47 PM

                    Strange! There are many copies on bookfinder.com. But it seems they cost little less than the new copies on Amazon at $25. I guess that the book has a healthy aftermarket value. (I was going to call it the Toyota of cookbooks, but now with all that unintended acceleration stuff on the car front, I guess the metaphor is dust.)

                3. re: Bada Bing
                  roxlet Aug 13, 2010 11:21 AM

                  My DH uses Cooking of Southwest France so extensively (particularly in the winter), that we actually bought a second copy. The cassoulet recipe is second to none, and multiple cassoulets form the basis of our New Year's Day open house. My husband makes his confit according to Paula too. It's a great book!

                  1. re: roxlet
                    The Dairy Queen Aug 18, 2010 04:46 AM

                    I don't know how I missed this comment, roxlet, but it is quite the sales pitch for Cooking of SW France! Maybe Nov. is the month for a Wolfert combo?

                    ~TDQ

                    1. re: The Dairy Queen
                      roxlet Aug 18, 2010 06:16 AM

                      Yes. I'd say colder months would be right for this Paula book. My husband says that when you eat cassoulet there should be a sign on the door:

                      No Work Today: Cassoulet!

                      1. re: roxlet
                        oakjoan Aug 18, 2010 01:14 PM

                        Well, yes and no regarding Wolfert books. Southwest France sounds like a good bet for fall/winter, but almost all of the rest of her books are Middle-Eastern, North African recipe based and those are better in warmer months.

                        In response to Bada Bing's comment about already doing a Wolfert book, it's true. BUT, it was her least successful book by far in my opinion. Long, slow cooking recipes are difficult to fit into the day of a working person.

                        Her other books are very different - mostly Med and Mid East. She also has one called, I think, Paula Wolfert's World of Food which contains favorite recipes from all over.

                  2. re: Bada Bing
                    The Dairy Queen Aug 17, 2010 05:23 PM

                    Bada Bing, it have a hard time thinking so far ahead. What month do you think would be best? Nov/Dec are hard because people are doing holiday entertaining, etc. Jan is hard because of New Years resolutions. Feb, maybe?

                    I'm not sure I'd be able to get my act together to participate fully, but I'd love to watch all you cook and post! I don't think it would be so hard to prearrange this for this one instance. Maybe propose 2 months, say, Nov and Feb, and have everyone post a simple yay or nay (and you can say yay to both months or nay to both months) and say the month with the most yays wins as long as a majority (or super-majority? not sure) says yay. Or something like that.

                    ~TDQ

                    1. re: The Dairy Queen
                      Bada Bing Aug 18, 2010 06:45 AM

                      Hi, DQ and others,

                      I think as you do about the months--Nov. or February seem ideal for Wolfert's Cooking of Southwest France. I don't have other Wolfert books but should probably get some. They all seem to gain iconic standing in their areas. COTM already did at least one of her books (Mediterranean) some time back, before I joined the Chow community.

                      Perhaps with smtucker's blessing, we might start a voting thread along some scheme?

                      1. re: Bada Bing
                        LulusMom Aug 18, 2010 10:27 AM

                        Oh, please, please do it in February, when I'll be out of the country!

                        1. re: LulusMom
                          bayoucook Aug 18, 2010 02:47 PM

                          haha and I'll have the booki by then!!! (smile)

                          1. re: LulusMom
                            roxlet Aug 18, 2010 03:18 PM

                            In a place that doesn't have pork? Maybe you would have been happy in Egypt, lol!

                            1. re: roxlet
                              LulusMom Aug 18, 2010 05:01 PM

                              New Zealand and Australia, lucky me! Nice to have husbands who get sabbaticals. I have NO idea how I'm going to do any cooking (no idea what the kitchens will be like). If anyone has any info at ALL on what kind of stuff is easy to get (yeah, not that interested in lamb) and what isn't (salmon?), I'd love to hear it. So, ladies and gents, please pick the pork laden cuisines for Jan and Feb. ; )

                              1. re: LulusMom
                                roxlet Aug 18, 2010 07:15 PM

                                I have The Cook's Companion, a huge Australian tome that is interestingly organized alphabetically by ingredient. It's indexed on EAB. It might be informative to look at it before your wonderful-sounding sojourn in Australia.

                                1. re: roxlet
                                  LulusMom Aug 19, 2010 03:47 AM

                                  Now that is a GREAT idea. Thank you so much for thinking of it.

                                  I know from talking to greedygirl that a lot of the things I'm used to buying here aren't available in the UK (turkey sausage and bacon), and expect the same will be true in those places, so I'm trying to make sure I take only recipes that will work for me there.

                                2. re: LulusMom
                                  bayoucook Aug 19, 2010 04:07 AM

                                  We were in Australia and New Zealand three years ago and loved it. I always scout out the grocery (etc. food) stores and am happy to report they have a huge selection, and beautiful produce. They have gourmet speciality stores where I found some items to bring home, plus bakeries, butchers, etc., like we have here in America. Could live in Sidney! And the people are so open and friendly. We were often sought out to talk about our president and economy and such. We met a couple of people on the street who bought us drinks for the talk (we're still in touch, hope to go back soon). Auckland was a dream. We took a cruise through the fjords - please try to do that if you can. Lucky, lucky you!!!!!!!

                                  1. re: bayoucook
                                    LulusMom Aug 19, 2010 05:56 AM

                                    Thanks Bayoucook, that is SO great to know. We're very excited about it, and I'm happy to hear that there are good gourmet stores there. That will help a LOT. I've read that anything considered decent tex-mex or mexican is impossible to get, and worried about some other items, but figured that the asian stuff would be amazing. We'll be spending most of our time in NZ, and I'm just thrilled. My husband biked the south island last year and fell in love with it.

                                    I'll likely post a thread when we get nearer our time there.
                                    PS - Headed (I hope) to the PO today to send you the book.

                        2. re: Bada Bing
                          mebby Aug 17, 2010 06:28 PM

                          I agree with TDQ that I probably wouldn't participate (not my style of cooking, but I love eating it), however I would love to follow along as others dive into such ambitious food. IMHO November might be good, as cool weather is upon us and some of those dishes might be ideal impressive fare for holiday entertaining.

                          1. re: mebby
                            jen kalb Aug 17, 2010 07:11 PM

                            Its not ALL` that ambitious tho sometimes its true we seem to be attracted to the tour de force items - I remember a fantastic and rather simple marinated and grilled duck breast I made several from Southwest France. Its true I lost my easy source of reasonably priced duck breasts and stopped making it but we still remember the dish fondly.

                            We also make prunes in armagnac from her recipe from time to time - wonderful too.

                            And, these days you can BUY as well as make confit of duck, giblets or whatever for use in salads and other relatively simple dishes.

                            Finally, I really dont get the pork critique above. Its true that some of the dishes like those with beans use pork but they are a minority. Many use poultry fat or butter or could substitute olive oil or, could simply omit a pork product. There is a lot beside cassoulet and garbure in that book.

                            1. re: jen kalb
                              LulusMom Aug 18, 2010 02:38 AM

                              Not a critique, but as someone who doesn't eat pork, I found that there were a LOT of recipes that I wouldn't be able to make.

                              1. re: jen kalb
                                buttertart Aug 18, 2010 06:15 AM

                                to jen kalb re duck: I recently found that the meat market on Mulberry below Canal carries frozen duck legs - cheap. Hatching a plan to make confit this fall. Didn't see breasts - maybe that Deluxe place across from the HK Supermarket has them?

                                1. re: buttertart
                                  jen kalb Aug 18, 2010 06:21 AM

                                  Ive seen the legs too, from time to time in Sunset Park as well as talking with butchers (farther up 8th than deluxe) who will prepare them for me on request. have made confit a couple times over the years - but given availability from D;'Artagnan and the fact that they make them over at Brooklyn Larder it doesnt seem so compelling just for a dish or two. I do love duck and cook it too rarely

                                  1. re: jen kalb
                                    buttertart Aug 18, 2010 06:45 AM

                                    It's true, it's a fair bit of work for something you can now buy - I may do it primarily as a present for a confit-loving friend. We have duck fairly often. Usually steam it prior to roadting it to render the fat. There's a super recipe for Peking duck in a Good Housekeeping Cookbook from the 80s or 90s - you prep it, chill it overnight, and roast it for ages at low temp, etc.

                                  2. re: buttertart
                                    JoanN Aug 18, 2010 08:38 AM

                                    I'm not familiar with the meat market on Mulberry; will have to check it out. I usually go to the butcher shop on the south side of Bayard between Mott and Elizabeth. I haven't been there in quite some time, but the last time I was there they had fresh duck legs. Don't know if it's a regular item and don't recall the price, but they were certainly inexpensive compared to uptown.

                                    1. re: JoanN
                                      buttertart Aug 18, 2010 08:54 AM

                                      They have nice meat in the one on Mulberry - and squab, quail, etc (frozen - but watch out for the "Confucius style", NOT eviscerated, not pleasant to deal with - I never wanted to know what a partridge's lungs looked like).

                                  3. re: jen kalb
                                    oakjoan Aug 18, 2010 01:19 PM

                                    I love that prunes in armagnac recipe.

                                    I also, as I post about once a week, LOVE her bbq pork marinade and use it at least once a month. It also works on chicken.

                                    But AGAIN....I am NOT suggesting this Southwest France book as COTM.

                                    We've already done a Middle Eastern book by Roden and, much as I like her, I like Wolfert better. Hence, Mediterranean Greens and Grains.

                                  4. re: mebby
                                    The Dairy Queen Aug 18, 2010 04:43 AM

                                    It's not that I wouldn't participate as much as I might not be able to get my act together in time, then look on wistfully as the rest of you cook. But, seeing all of you have success might encourage me to try it. Plus, I am sure there must be at least some recipes in the book that don't call for so much planning that would work for me.

                                    Nevertheless for the pork and planning averse, what if we paired this book with another Wolfert? I think a Wolfert has been a past COTM and oakjoan just nominated Mediterranean Greens and Grains which certainly appeals to me. I'm sorry to always be the person who suggests a combo, but it just seems like having complementary books can be an effective way to resolve some issues. But, I don't mean to dilute, so, feel free to reject the idea outright if it makes no sense.

                                    November could work for me for a Wolfert combo. Does that give the advance planners enough time?

                                    Mebby--I hope things settle down for you. It sounds like you're in the middle of challenging times.

                                    ~TDQ

                                2. junglekitte Aug 12, 2010 03:44 PM

                                  I also lurk here but have every book people are nominating this time so I want in! My order or preference is:
                                  1. The New Book of Middle Eastern Food
                                  2. Saha
                                  3. Plenty
                                  4. Ad Hoc @ Home

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: junglekitte
                                    Gio Aug 12, 2010 05:41 PM

                                    Welcome junglekitte. If you want your recommendations to be counted they must be typed in all CAPS. That helps the coordinator see the titles to be counted...

                                    1. re: Gio
                                      pikawicca Aug 12, 2010 06:30 PM

                                      For those who might be interest, Saha has been newly indexed on EYC.

                                    2. re: junglekitte
                                      junglekitte Aug 12, 2010 08:07 PM

                                      THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN FOOD

                                      oopsie! :)

                                    3. bayoucook Aug 11, 2010 06:48 AM

                                      AD HOC AT HOME by Thomas Keller. Got a deal on it at Amazon and it'll be here today. Can't wait!

                                      60 Replies
                                      1. re: bayoucook
                                        JoanN Aug 11, 2010 07:45 AM

                                        Okay. AD HOC AT HOME. And it's all your fault, bayoucook. This is the fourth cookbook I've bought this month and we're not even halfway through yet. This does not augur well. Not for my wallet, at least.

                                        1. re: JoanN
                                          The Dairy Queen Aug 11, 2010 08:00 AM

                                          HAHAHA! I have bought several books this month already, too. I got some great deals, so I'm less worried about my wallet than I am about my bookshelves. I've outgrown them. Again.

                                          So far, I'm delighted by every single nomination so far and would be thrilled to cook from any one of them. I have the feeling I won't get to jump in until late Sept, though.

                                          ~TDQ

                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                            roxlet Aug 11, 2010 11:11 AM

                                            I echo you TDQ. Any of them would make me happy too.

                                          2. re: JoanN
                                            bayoucook Aug 13, 2010 07:00 AM

                                            I know. So don't go to epicurious and read about the top 50 cookbooks of all time - it's very dangerous! Got my Ad Hoc At Home and can't put it down. It's gorgeous and huge and delicious.

                                            1. re: bayoucook
                                              The Dairy Queen Aug 13, 2010 07:14 AM

                                              Bayoucook, you are a bad influence on me! :). Well, I have 6 of the top 40, and several that I don't have are on my "wish list"

                                              http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyl...

                                              I'm somewhat surprised to see Platter of Figs on there as it doesn't seem to have gotten much traction among cookbook lovers here on CH, myself included. Funny also to see JO's Italy book on there since it didn't get much love during noms/voting for Italian Easy month.

                                              Any guesses for top 10? Dunlop? Nguyen? Roden? David? Slater? Hopkinson?

                                              ~TDQ

                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                greedygirl Aug 13, 2010 09:03 AM

                                                I've got over a quarter of those so far!

                                                1. re: greedygirl
                                                  The Dairy Queen Aug 13, 2010 09:07 AM

                                                  You obviously have excellent taste in cookbooks!

                                                  ~TDQ

                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                    greedygirl Aug 13, 2010 09:46 AM

                                                    Or just a lot...

                                                2. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                  pikawicca Aug 13, 2010 10:12 AM

                                                  I can't take this list at all seriously, since they put MTAOFC in 21st place.

                                                  1. re: pikawicca
                                                    The Dairy Queen Aug 13, 2010 10:22 AM

                                                    You're thinking it should be higher on the list? It might deserve to be higher, but the list is, for obvious reasons, somewhat British-centric.

                                                    ~TDQ

                                                    1. re: pikawicca
                                                      greedygirl Aug 13, 2010 11:59 AM

                                                      Julia Child isn't that widely read in the UK. I don't know anyone who owns a copy of her seminal work, including myself.

                                                    2. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                      roxlet Aug 13, 2010 11:17 AM

                                                      I have 7 of these, but the Guardian list is uniquely British, I think (duh!).

                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                        j
                                                        JaneEYB Aug 13, 2010 11:47 AM

                                                        I have 19 of them but being a Brit who is now in the US, and with a lot of cookbooks, surprising I don't have more really.

                                                        In the top 10 I would definitely expect to see Nigel Slater (he's a contributing editor to Observer's Food Monthly so it would be odd if he wasn't there at all), Elizabeth David, Simon Hopkinson, Claudia Roden, Marcella Hazan, and maybe also David Thompson, Richard Olney, Rose Gray & Ruth Rogers.

                                                        1. re: JaneEYB
                                                          The Dairy Queen Aug 13, 2010 11:50 AM

                                                          Oh how could I have forgetten Hazan, Thompson and Olney!

                                                          ~TDQ

                                                          1. re: JaneEYB
                                                            bayoucook Aug 13, 2010 11:52 AM

                                                            Yes, how could they leave out Hazen!?

                                                            1. re: bayoucook
                                                              The Dairy Queen Aug 13, 2010 12:04 PM

                                                              They haven't left her out...yet!

                                                              It's a top 50 list, but they've only given us 40 of the 50. They are going to give us the remaining 10 on Sunday!

                                                              ~TDQ

                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                bayoucook Aug 14, 2010 05:39 AM

                                                                can't wait!

                                                            2. re: JaneEYB
                                                              greedygirl Aug 13, 2010 11:57 AM

                                                              I didn't get on at all with Richard Olney. Bought a cheap copy of Simple French Food and gave it away.

                                                              1. re: greedygirl
                                                                buttertart Aug 13, 2010 05:05 PM

                                                                Not at all a favorite of mine either (Olney). We once (about a hundred years ago) went to a tribute dinner to Olney at Chez Panisse - recipes of his were used - and it was dismal - grey braised shoulder of lamb and ditto potato and celeriac purée. The book struck me as too precious by half.

                                                              2. re: JaneEYB
                                                                Caitlin McGrath Aug 13, 2010 01:18 PM

                                                                I was slightly surprised to see Plenty in there. It's a great-looking book, but hasn't exactly stood the test of time, only having been out two months or so. I'm thinking it's to do with the Ottolenghi-Guardian connection.

                                                              3. re: roxlet
                                                                pikawicca Aug 14, 2010 06:52 PM

                                                                But The Book of Jewish Food at #3? Who owns this?

                                                                1. re: pikawicca
                                                                  oakjoan Aug 17, 2010 04:37 PM

                                                                  I Do! I do! I own The Book of Jewish Food....If it's the one by Claudia Roden. What a wonderful book - divided into Ashkenazi and Sephardi recipes. Lots of old photos and great recipes.

                                                                  Now that I'm posting, I want to say that I'm not the slightest bit interested in anything by Thomas Keller. I got the French Laundry Cookbook as a gift and only made a couple of things from it. Tried to trade it in at Moe's Books on Telegraph Ave. in Berkeley. They took all the other books but said they already had way too many used copies of FL. He's just too precious for my taste.

                                                                  What happened to Nigel Slater and Jamie Oliver mentions as COTM this time around?

                                                                  1. re: oakjoan
                                                                    The Dairy Queen Aug 17, 2010 05:19 PM

                                                                    I would still love to do Slater or Oliver, but I'm doing my best to refrain from nominating and voting this month(if I can stand it) because my schedule has gone suddenly, unexpectedly haywire recently and I've not been cooking from this month's selection. I expect my crazy schedule to continue into the first half of Sept, but I hope to dive in in earnest after that.

                                                                    But, I'd love to see a groundswell of support for Kitchen Diaries. I'm still unclear which book is considered Oliver's best.

                                                                    ~TDQ

                                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                      mebby Aug 17, 2010 06:35 PM

                                                                      I'm with you, TDQ. I'm on vacation with no kitchen for 1.5 weeks in Sept, my job is in major upheaval (the-when-you-get-back-from-vacation-will-you-have-a-job kind), then I am in back to school mode and my little guy starting kinder while I start shopping for middle schools for next year for my daughter. Suffice it to say that my September culinary ambitions are minimal. I'm actually half-hoping that Plenty doesn't win, as I really want to fully participate if/when it finally does!

                                                                    2. re: oakjoan
                                                                      Gio Aug 17, 2010 06:15 PM

                                                                      I own the Roden Jewish book too, OJ. I love it. Her fish recipes are ones I relied on when I first bought a Community Supported Fishery share here in Massachusetts. As for the Keller, I don't have the time to fuss over his recipes. Hell. I don't buy green bananas. OTOH, I could easily support Nigel Slater.

                                                                      1. re: oakjoan
                                                                        LulusMom Aug 18, 2010 02:35 AM

                                                                        I'd definitely get behind any Jamie Oliver push.

                                                                        1. re: oakjoan
                                                                          JoanN Aug 18, 2010 02:12 PM

                                                                          I wasn't the least interested in either French Laundry or Bouchon. And even Ad Hoc pushes a lot of my things-I-hate-about-cookbooks buttons: It's a chef's book; it's a PITA size; it's art for art's sake rather than information or explication. And, no, I'm not buying a propane torch to make a rib roast. I’ve only barely begun to dip into it, but so far I’m charmed. I don’t find it precious in the least. The text is readable and very informative and the recipes look comparatively simple and seriously delicious. Sure hope that all holds up once I start cooking from it.

                                                                          1. re: JoanN
                                                                            The Dairy Queen Aug 18, 2010 02:35 PM

                                                                            JoanN, given your feelings about FL and Bouchon, what motivated you to dip into AHAH? (I own it, btw. I got a good deal on it. Have cooked only one thing from it. OK, results.)

                                                                            ~TDQ

                                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                              bayoucook Aug 18, 2010 02:46 PM

                                                                              AHAH is my first Keller book and I am enjoying it very much; haven't cooked from it yet because I threw my back out a week ago. Had seen FL at a friend's house and wasn't impressed with it. Plan to make a few things out of AHAH (I like those initials!) as soon as I can stand for a while.

                                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                JoanN Aug 18, 2010 03:27 PM

                                                                                It all started with that fried chicken recipe. LOL

                                                                                Actually, I had found the fried chicken recipe online and copied it to my database. Then, the other week when I was killing time at Barnes & Noble, I looked up that recipe to see what else he had to say about it. I started reading the book and looking through the various light bulb tips. I liked what I read. I liked what he had to say. I liked his recommendations. I thought I'd give it a try.

                                                                                What did you make that was only okay? I made the chocolate chip cookies before I bought the book and thought they were a distant third to Cook's Illustrated and Dorie Greenspan. Bought the book anyway.

                                                                                1. re: JoanN
                                                                                  The Dairy Queen Aug 18, 2010 03:46 PM

                                                                                  Oh, nothing that extraordinary--just some spiced nuts or something like that. My husband like them a lot. I thought they were just okay. But, I'm looking forward to that fried chicken, too!

                                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                    j
                                                                                    JaneEYB Aug 18, 2010 08:37 PM

                                                                                    I think we are all going to be cooking the fried chicken if the book gets chosen. Hey, let's all make it anyway, even if it isn't COTM.

                                                                                    1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                      The Dairy Queen Aug 19, 2010 06:01 AM

                                                                                      Deal!

                                                                                      ~TDQ

                                                                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                        bayoucook Aug 19, 2010 07:33 AM

                                                                                        I'll join y'all. I make my chicken just like he does except for the lemon-herb brine. Will try to make it this weekend. My grandmothers taught me the dredge in flour mixture, egg and milk mixture (with hot sauce for us), back into the flour mixture and let it rest for a little while before frying. One grandmother drained hers on brown paper bags, and one swore by a rack. Both were memorable and I make them to this day; I prefer the rack for draining. I think I'll be cooking quite a few recipes out of AHAH, I'm lovin' it.

                                                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                          bayoucook Aug 19, 2010 07:54 AM

                                                                                          Want to share my short list to cook soon from AHAH -
                                                                                          braised beef short ribs - 41 -- still haven't made this dish yet
                                                                                          stroganoff 42 Hamburgers 48
                                                                                          meatballs with ppardelle 50 and roasted tomato sauce 333
                                                                                          slow-roasted veal shank 76 - roasts on low for 7-8 hours!
                                                                                          crab cakes 83 - binds with aioli - I use bechamel, want to try it
                                                                                          grits cakes 216 with the roasted tomato sauce 333
                                                                                          red onion-cranberry marmalade 248

                                                                                          pineapple upside-down cake 310 - see the pan shmear! with rum and vanilla paste -

                                                                                          caramel ice cream - 321

                                                                                          Can't wait! Will report back as I go....

                                                                                          1. re: bayoucook
                                                                                            The Dairy Queen Aug 19, 2010 08:49 AM

                                                                                            Oh, please do report back. It does all sound very enticing!

                                                                                            ~TDQ

                                                                        2. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                          bayoucook Aug 13, 2010 11:52 AM

                                                                          I felt the same way about JO's Italy, have read little about Platter of Figs. Can't wait to see the top ten; I would think David would surely be in there. Be nice if one of our Southern cookbooks we loved made it in there (I was unfamiliar with the one that did make it) - I love those darn expensive lists!!

                                                                          1. re: bayoucook
                                                                            j
                                                                            JaneEYB Aug 14, 2010 07:18 PM

                                                                            It's up now at http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyl....

                                                                            And the results are:
                                                                            10. Great Dishes of the World by Robert Carrier
                                                                            9. Sichuan Cookery by Fuchsia Dunlop
                                                                            8. The Classic Italian Cookbook by Marcella Hazan
                                                                            7. Thai Food by David Thompson
                                                                            6. English Food by Jane Grigson
                                                                            5. Roast Chicken and Other Stories by Simon Hopkinson & Lindsey Bareham
                                                                            4. Kitchen Diaries by Nigel Slater
                                                                            3.The Book of Jewish Food by Claudia Roden
                                                                            2. French Provincial Cooking by Elizabeth David
                                                                            1.The French Menu Cookbook by Richard Olney

                                                                            So i think between us all we forecast pretty well what was there. I own 8 out of the 10 and feel like I really must buy the missing two.

                                                                            1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                              The Dairy Queen Aug 14, 2010 08:00 PM

                                                                              Wow, I've never even heard of book #10. But, all of the others, certainly. I have four of them, and several of the others are on my wish list.

                                                                              ~TDQ

                                                                              1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                Caitlin McGrath Aug 14, 2010 08:55 PM

                                                                                It's surprising to me that they chose The Book of Jewish food, over The (New) Book of Middle Eastern Food for Claudia Roden. I am sure many people own it, and it has an impressive historical and geographical depth, but among all her cookbook, TBOMEF seems to me to be Roden's magnum opus, and is really an impressive and wonderful book.

                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                                                                  oakjoan Aug 17, 2010 04:47 PM

                                                                                  It is a wonderful book - Middle Eastern by Roden. But there are so many Middle Eastern cookbooks and probably no few major Jewish cookbooks around. That's probably why it's on the list.

                                                                                  Also, I prefer Paula Wolfert to Rodan by a hair. I love her cookbooks to distraction, from Cooking of Southwest France to Mediterranean Greens and Grains. Her Moroccan cookbook is also great. Slow Food is my least fave and I like it, too. It was a previous COTM

                                                                                  Don't understand why she's not mentioned by anybody but me...and I don't even get a kickback. She goes up into small villages in the mountains of several countries and gets recipes from grandmothers. If we're going to do another Med. book, I think we should expand beyond Claudia Rodan.

                                                                                  I nominate MEDITERRANEAN GREENS AND GRAINS by Paula Wolftert.

                                                                                  1. re: oakjoan
                                                                                    jen kalb Aug 17, 2010 06:49 PM

                                                                                    she's my favorite too- her recipes seem to have that little bit of extra detail that make them special and that others (including the earlier version of Roden's book, which prejudices me against it) lack. Plus she finds recipes no one else does. GREEN AND GRAINS OR COOKING OF THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN wouldbe a great pair with RODEN.

                                                                                    Oakjoan pls note the discussion of a Wolfert book later this year below....I just bought a couple of clay cooking vessels to start working with her clay pot cookery book

                                                                                2. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                  bayoucook Aug 15, 2010 07:02 AM

                                                                                  Of course you must! I never heard of #1 either - gonna check it out. And the others too. I only own ONE (Hazen) of the top ten - poor me!!not for long!!

                                                                                  1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                    buttertart Aug 15, 2010 07:33 AM

                                                                                    I have all except the Carrier (which seemed rather dated when I looked at it ages ago, if I'm remembering it correctly) and the Olney (which I had, didn't like, and got rid of). I'm happy to see the Jane Grigson on the list, she's not as well-known in the US as she deserves to be - her books are literate and wry and the recipes are wonderful. Everybody interested in food should read all of her books.

                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                      greedygirl Aug 15, 2010 08:54 AM

                                                                                      I have six of them. I don't rate Olney and am mystified by his No 1 position. The Carrier I aquired while working for the publisher that reissued it in the 90s and gave to a friend. I didn't feel the need to own it then, obviously. I do want the Thompson book, however. The Roden I can live without.

                                                                                      1. re: greedygirl
                                                                                        oakjoan Aug 17, 2010 04:55 PM

                                                                                        gg: What's the name of those French brothers who have/had a restaurant in Britain? I have no patience to go through my shelves to find it.

                                                                                        Roxlet: I love the "past their due date" remark!

                                                                                        I find I have 5 of the books. Greens, Julia, Invitation to Indian Cooking, Mexican Cooking, and Japanese Cooking, A Simple Art. I keep meaning to cook from the Japanese book, but all I ever do is Sukiyaki.

                                                                                        1. re: oakjoan
                                                                                          Rubee Aug 17, 2010 05:06 PM

                                                                                          The Roux brothers?

                                                                                    2. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                      roxlet Aug 15, 2010 11:30 AM

                                                                                      I have 3 of the books and no plans to buy any of the others. An extremely subjective list with books that If feel have not passed the test of time and others that seem to be past their due date.

                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                        The Dairy Queen Aug 15, 2010 12:00 PM

                                                                                        Well, the list does purport to be the best cookbooks "of all time," which might explain why some books might seem to be past their prime. I completely agree with your comment that some books haven't passed the test of time, Plenty being the primary example...

                                                                                        The three that I have are all former COTMs: Dunlop, Hazan (I'm going to count it), and Hopkinson. I mistook the David book for "French Country Cooking" which was a former COTM and which I do have. So, I only have 3/10. I would like to have the Thompson book and the Slater book. I might have to see the Grigson book before I decide.

                                                                                        ~TDQ

                                                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                          buttertart Aug 15, 2010 03:07 PM

                                                                                          What? See it before you decide??? ;-) All kidding aside, her "Good Things" abd fruit and vegetable books are as good if not better than "English Food".

                                                                                          1. re: buttertart
                                                                                            The Dairy Queen Aug 15, 2010 03:55 PM

                                                                                            Oh her fruit and vegetable books are on my list for sure. I'm just not sure about English Food.

                                                                                            ~TDQ

                                                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                              buttertart Aug 15, 2010 04:00 PM

                                                                                              You might be surprised.

                                                                                              1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                The Dairy Queen Aug 15, 2010 04:02 PM

                                                                                                Truth is, if I saw any of her books used, I would pick it up.

                                                                                                ~TDQ

                                                                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                                  buttertart Aug 16, 2010 07:44 AM

                                                                                                  http://www.abebooks.com/servlet/Searc...
                                                                                                  Fruit and veg books could be yours for $15.44 (items 87 and 91). "Mushroom Feast" and "Food with the Famous" are also available for very little.

                                                                                3. re: bayoucook
                                                                                  buttertart Aug 13, 2010 05:15 PM

                                                                                  I have 12 of these - and some of the British ones (the Jeremy Round in particular) I don't have are awfully tempting. Amusing to see the Len Deighton cited: I once worked for a woman who had been a BOAC stewardess on runs with him when he was a steward - she said he was a very annoying person, always maundering on about the spy novel he was working on!

                                                                                4. re: JoanN
                                                                                  k
                                                                                  karenfinan Aug 15, 2010 02:18 PM

                                                                                  I too am a long time lurker, but I have been waiting to jump in. AD HOC AT HOME gets my vote. I got it for Christmas and have cooked several things from it I loved, and would enjoy an excuse to do more cooking from it.

                                                                                  1. re: karenfinan
                                                                                    The Dairy Queen Aug 15, 2010 02:20 PM

                                                                                    Welcome to COTM, Karen. I would love to hear about some of your successes from the book (which I also own), if you wouldn't mind sharing...

                                                                                    ~TDQ

                                                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                      bayoucook Aug 15, 2010 02:49 PM

                                                                                      me too - still reading thru my copy and loving it

                                                                                    2. re: karenfinan
                                                                                      j
                                                                                      JaneEYB Aug 15, 2010 03:11 PM

                                                                                      Oh good, another vote so I think I'm safe now to put it in caps (didn't want to "waste" my nomination by being the first poster). So AD HOC AT HOME it is.

                                                                                      1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                        The Dairy Queen Aug 15, 2010 03:54 PM

                                                                                        Jane, nominate away! Just FYI, you can actually nominate more than one book in the nominations thread. On the other hand, you're only allowed one vote in the voting thread...

                                                                                        ~TDQ

                                                                                5. jen kalb Aug 11, 2010 06:45 AM

                                                                                  PLENTY - other OTTOLENGHI as per last month.

                                                                                  1. b
                                                                                    balabanian Aug 10, 2010 01:55 PM

                                                                                    I've mostly been a voyeur in COTM to date so haven't earned the right to push for my nomination much, but I am really interested in trying:
                                                                                    Claudia Roden's "THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN FOOD"

                                                                                    http://www.amazon.com/New-Book-Middle...

                                                                                    10 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: balabanian
                                                                                      Gio Aug 10, 2010 02:00 PM

                                                                                      Many of us lurked before joining the COTM group, Balabanian, so push all you want. Glad to have you.

                                                                                      1. re: balabanian
                                                                                        pikawicca Aug 10, 2010 02:31 PM

                                                                                        An excellent book.

                                                                                        1. re: balabanian
                                                                                          The Dairy Queen Aug 10, 2010 04:40 PM

                                                                                          Hmmm...could we pair it with Roden's Arabesque, a former COTM, and make it a duo?

                                                                                          ~TDQ

                                                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                            LulusMom Aug 10, 2010 04:46 PM

                                                                                            Hmmm, I *like* this idea.

                                                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                              pikawicca Aug 10, 2010 04:47 PM

                                                                                              I cook from Arabesque all the time, so no argument from me. I think we should take a look at "Saha," at some point, another rif on Middle Eastern cuisine. (There are some truly splendid and unusual recipes in this book.)

                                                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                                Rubee Aug 10, 2010 05:57 PM

                                                                                                Love Arabesque, so my nomination is:

                                                                                                Roden's THE NEW BOOK OF MIDDLE EASTERN FOOD and ARABESQUE

                                                                                                1. re: Rubee
                                                                                                  j
                                                                                                  JaneEYB Aug 10, 2010 06:51 PM

                                                                                                  Point of interest, A Book of Middle Eastern Food (the precursor to this one) was awarded the James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame this year.

                                                                                                  1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                                    The Dairy Queen Aug 10, 2010 07:21 PM

                                                                                                    Oh, that's very cool. Do you know what makes this book the "new" book of middle eastern food?

                                                                                                    ~TDQ

                                                                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                                      pikawicca Aug 10, 2010 07:23 PM

                                                                                                      Big revisions, expansions, and updates.

                                                                                                      1. re: pikawicca
                                                                                                        The Dairy Queen Aug 10, 2010 07:24 PM

                                                                                                        Sounds good to me!

                                                                                                        ~TDQ

                                                                                            2. pikawicca Aug 10, 2010 12:01 PM

                                                                                              I'll run this one up the flag pole one more time (and while summer veggies are still abundant): PLENTY.

                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: pikawicca
                                                                                                Gio Aug 10, 2010 12:05 PM

                                                                                                I endorse PLENTY.

                                                                                                I nominate: OTTOLENGHI; THE COOKBOOK

                                                                                                ETA: I'm suggesting pairing the 2 books

                                                                                                1. re: Gio
                                                                                                  The Dairy Queen Aug 10, 2010 01:40 PM

                                                                                                  Gio, are you suggesting a redo on Ottolenghi by itself? Or a pairing of Ottolenghi with Plenty?

                                                                                                  And whoa, all of this white space is wacky!

                                                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                                                                                    Gio Aug 10, 2010 01:59 PM

                                                                                                    TDQ: I'm suggesting pairing the 2 books as we discussed on the nominating board last month. I just edited to reflect that idea.

                                                                                                    1. re: Gio
                                                                                                      The Dairy Queen Aug 10, 2010 04:39 PM

                                                                                                      Nice!

                                                                                                      ~TDQ

                                                                                                  2. re: Gio
                                                                                                    greedygirl Aug 11, 2010 02:19 AM

                                                                                                    I'm getting on board the OTTOLENGHI/PLENTY train for September too. Much as I'd like to do Claudia Roden, I'm heading to Turkey at the end of September for two weeks so I'd like to do a different cuisine before my trip.

                                                                                                2. j
                                                                                                  JaneEYB Aug 10, 2010 07:51 AM

                                                                                                  I'll start it off with a book I want to cook more from, Ad Hoc at Home by Thomas Keller. I'm not nominating it in caps though as it is an expensive book and may not be suitable as a COTM. Though my local library system has 36 copies of which 14 are available today. It is a beautiful book and not restaurant-focused like many chefs books.
                                                                                                  But I'd also be very happy for Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi to come up again.

                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                                    JoanN Aug 10, 2010 02:45 PM

                                                                                                    I've been looking for an excuse to buy "Ad Hoc at Home." In fact, I have the choc chip cookies from that book (got the recipe online) shaped and freezing on a baking sheet ready to be bagged as I type. And I'm hoping to try the fried chicken recipe while my grandson is here next week. You can buy new copies for less than half price on Amazon. I'm not nominating it either. Yet. But my arm would need very little twisting.

                                                                                                    1. re: JaneEYB
                                                                                                      rabaja Aug 10, 2010 09:05 PM

                                                                                                      I saw it at CostCo last month too, wish I could remember the price.
                                                                                                      If you two nominate it, I might too...;)

                                                                                                      1. re: rabaja
                                                                                                        s
                                                                                                        smtucker Aug 10, 2010 09:26 PM

                                                                                                        My Costco has not had it. I do check that table every time I go, which is very often. Where is your Costco located?

                                                                                                        1. re: smtucker
                                                                                                          rabaja Aug 11, 2010 08:45 AM

                                                                                                          I found it at the SF CostCo last month. May check back in this week to see if it's still there.

                                                                                                    2. Gio Aug 10, 2010 07:22 AM

                                                                                                      Whooo Hoo, SMT...! Many thanks for taking the helm for the next term of office. Let the fun begin...

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