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What is your favorite cookbook?

SouthToTheLeft Jan 26, 2011 08:37 PM

Hey —

After reading through a really healthy discussion on the board about cookbooks you wish you hadn't purchased, I was curious what your favorite cookbooks were? Which do you use everyday, or which did you find really inspirational for your cooking?

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  1. gansu girl RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 27, 2011 03:00 AM

    The America's Test Kitchen "Family" cookbooks are all great, go-to resources for me - lots of pictures, how-to's, interesting tidbits re gadgets/tools to make work easier. I have the regular Family cookbook, the Baking book and the new Healthy Family cookbook - just got the last one for Christmas and have been using it multiple times per week - healthied-up formulas, good ideas and nutritional info. for all the recipes.


    1. h
      Harters RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 27, 2011 06:30 AM

      Seeing as the OP limits us to one book, it'd have to be Nigel Slater's "Real Fast Food".

      1 Reply
      1. re: Harters
        SouthToTheLeft RE: Harters Jan 27, 2011 07:49 PM

        The limit was not intentional!

      2. s
        sushigirlie RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 27, 2011 07:43 AM

        Raghavan Iyer's 660 Curries. The recipes in this book have extraordinary breadth. The instructions are clear, and they invariably work--often with revelatory results.

        My answer to this question used to be Marcella Hazan's Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. Shows just how great Iyer's book is.

        1 Reply
        1. re: sushigirlie
          mirage RE: sushigirlie Jan 27, 2011 11:54 AM

          I own 660 Curries, but I always forget I have it. Which recipes have you enjoyed?

        2. chefathome RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 27, 2011 12:06 PM

          "Larousse Gastronomique", although not really a cookbook, is where I get most of my inspirational. I love "French Laundry" and Marcus Samuelsson's "Soul of a New Cuisine". I also use Ian Hemphill's "Herb and Spice Bible" a lot. Jim Tarnatino's "Marinades, Rubs, Brines, Cures and Glazes" is another favourite, as is Malouf's "Turquoise" (Turkish cooking). When you have hundreds and hundreds of books it is impossible to choose only a few!

          1. buttertart RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 29, 2011 07:40 AM

            I think if I were to be limited to one for the rest of my days I could live with it being "Marcella's Italian Kitchen", my favorite of her books. Everything I've made from it has been wonderful.

            1. chef chicklet RE: SouthToTheLeft Jan 29, 2011 10:14 AM

              Gosh the movie Sophie's Choice comes to mind, I can't do it. I'd have to choose a couple, I use Wolfgang Puck"'s Makes it Easy, alot for technique and some mighty good no fail recipes, esp. Sherry Yard's pastry, Emeril Lagasse Delmonico's - I love his sense about bold seasoning, Patricia Wells-Paris CB for freshness and simplicity for produce in season and she credits a lot of the really good chefs for some of her recipes. As a wild card that would be Lidia Bastianich, and just anything I could get my hands on. I know these are older cookbooks, but learning technique for me is the gateway to creativity. I'm interested in learning traditional foods doing them well, and springboarding from there. Mainly because I really have a difficult time following recipes to the T, I must put my own touches on it.

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