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What cookbooks have you bought lately? Springtime edition, part 2 [OLD]

Having hit 300-ish posts on the last go-round on the topic, it's time for a new thread so nobody gets scrollitis of the index finger (or sweepitis on a touchscreen). I received the new Medrich desserts book and "Couture Chocolate" from my TGC sale buy this weekend. Had a peek in the chocolate book, which is gorgeous, but a bit over my head (I'm not a candymaker, yet) but the Medrich is awaiting my being fully over this bug so I can enjoy it properly.
Shopping my shelves I have really enjoyed rereading Paula Peck's "The Art of Fine Baking", which came out in the early 60s and introduces methods subsequently thought of as innovations now, such as reverse creaming and cooking part of the fruit for blueberry filling. There are several recipes I'm itching to try.
I'm still in pursuit of a suitable celebratory cake and am looking through RLB's "Heavenly Cakes" and Alford & Duguid's "Home Baking" (roxlet noticed a walnut torte in it that might do the trick, despite my general dislike of the authors' smug, self-congratulatory style). Come to think of it, Ms Duguid has a book coming out on a southeast Asian -- Burmese? -- cuisine, I believe, that I'll doubtlessly grit my teeth and buy. We shall see.
And how about you? What new or revisited delights are you enjoying?

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  1. Well, I haven't bought it, nor have I cooked from it, but I did give it away -- Homesick Texan. I have a friend who is from Texas whose birthday is today and who also had a medical procedure this morning. So I decided to give her this book along with the red velvet cake I cooked. Now I'm wondering if I should buy this book again, so I'm asking if anyone has cooked from it, and what the results were.

    2 Replies
    1. re: roxlet

      Homesick Texan has beaucoup fans on CH but I ain't one of them. The recipes didn't grab me. Read through the whole book when I got it.

      1. re: roxlet

        I've had great results with her recipes both from the cookbook and online, but the food is pure comfort food for me so I might be a bit biased. I had some friends over for a cocktail and snacks evening a few weeks ago and served the chorizo empanadas, queso cookies, chorizo jalapenos, and one of the salsas to rave reviews (using the homemade chorizo in the book). I haven't had much of a chance to cook main dishes from the book yet, but the enchilada recipes I've tried from the web site have gotten me through more than an occasional bout of homesickness.

      2. Buttertart, I'd been wondering about the new Alice Medrich.. alas, the Toronto Public Library does not have it yet. Serious Eats Sweets is doing their "Cook the Book" series on it for the next few weeks...
        I got Lisa Yockelson's "Baking by Flavour" out of the library last week, but haven't progressed from avidly reading it in bed at night to actually baking from it yet... I just haven't decided what to make yet!

        7 Replies
        1. re: rstuart

          I don't have anything by Yockelson. What is appealing to you in this volume? I gave the new Yockelson (didn't it win an award?) to someone for Christmas, so I only perused it briefly...

          1. re: roxlet

            I had a look at it at Christmastime in a bookstore and for once in my life wasn't seized by possession lust. What do you like about it, rstuart?
            You need to get your mitts on that Paula Peck.

            1. re: buttertart

              My mother had a few of her cookbooks when I was younger: Country Pies and Country Cakes. She made some really great recipes out of there.. I think that she still has them. So I've always been a fan. In fact, I think that the chocolate cream cheese cake that was then carefully shaped into a cat and iced for my 13th birthday was from Country Cakes ;)
              I think that it was the fact that the cookbook was divided up by flavour.. and with the exception of Almond and Apricot, I love all of the flavours. I really need to try some.. I have a colleague who is retiring next week, and I think that I will try something from the coffee section for her.. she has loved my other coffee-flavoured baking..

          2. re: rstuart

            The new Medrich is fun. I read most of it this morning and there are lots of things I want to make in it. Her usual unusual and pleasing flavor combinations abound.

            1. re: buttertart

              I found it appealing. I will be turning to her "easiest" melted-butter, press-in-pan tart crust to try next time I need a sweet tart crust.

              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                I will too, although it was fun making Paula Peck's one by hand this morning...would have banged it in the fp but it had bread starter in it.

              2. re: buttertart

                Library now has it on order...I'm the second person to put a hold on it!

            2. Home Baking is nicer than I remembered. There are a few recipes that I think would be clunkers (a proto-baklava with thin flatbreads i/o pastry) but on the whole it's quite good. And it has a recipe for butter tarts in it! And due homage is paid to Edna Staebler and Mme Jehane Benoit, groundbreaking cooking experts of our home and native land (mine and rstuart's, anyway) when I was growing up.
              (The walnut torte won't do for the bday cake, too eggy.)

              1 Reply
              1. re: buttertart

                I've got Home Baking (along with all their other books), and I think I've only baked from it once or twice. I have made a few cakes from Rose's Heavenly Cakes, and they are always delicious, though the instructions are hilariously fussy. Lately I've been using Warm Bread and Honey Cake a lot, and Bourke Street Bakery, though not for big celebration cakes. The German Chocolate in RHC is fantastic if you like that sort of thing.

              2. Not a book I've recently bought but one I have from the library...

                Honey From A Weed by Patience Gray, an English cookery writer who is said to have had more influence on English cooking and the embracing of the Mediterranean way of life than the revered Elizabeth David. Patience was born on October 31, 1917 and died on March 10, 2005

                As I said, the book I'm reading is a library copy but I dare say it will soon be on one my library shelves. It's a fascinating account of her Mediterranean odyssey that took Patience and the man she called 'the sculptor', Norman Mommens, to Carrara, Catalonia, the Greek island of Naxos and, finally to southern Italy, where in 1970 they settled in Apulia, in a primitive farmhouse they named Spigolizzi.

                Her explanations of the reasons behind certain cookery procedures such as using a mortar and pestle, for example, make one want to discard all modern kitchen conveniences... almost. I love this book, though. Authentic rustic recipes for native produce and seafood are interspersed throughout the chapters so I can't really call it a cookbook, but one gets a feel for what cucina povera is really all about but it all sounds so cucina raffinata somehow. There are charming line drawings throughout by her former daughter-in-law.

                The following is a quote from her obituary in The Telegraph:
                "Patience was a woman of strong emotions and opinions, her prose muscular and full of character. So, too, was her cookery. While Plats Du Jour had been largely derived from books and home experiment, Honey [from a Weed] was more in the way of field notes of an anthropologist, but one who had gone native herself. To her last years, she would not have the normal conveniences of refrigerators, gas cookers, electric light, telephones or water closets at Spigolizzi. It was only growing frailty, and the urging of her son Nicolas, that allowed some compromise with modernity."


                ETA: Just searched EYB for this book and indeed it's there... and.... there are 219 recipes.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Gio

                  I've been reading about that book since the 70s. Must have a look.

                  1. re: Gio

                    Ah, now I see your post Gio, I didn't even realize we had a new Cookbooks thread underway...not that I haven't been buying books, I just haven't been confessing ...err, reporting them!! LOL!

                    Thanks for sharing that Guardian link.

                    I've read most of this book but haven't cooked from it (for lack of time/too many books etc) I'm hoping we could make it a COTM once day. Even if I never were to cook from it though, it was well worth the investment as it's such a fascinating read. A true food lover's book I'd say.

                    1. re: Gio

                      I've had Honey from a Weed for many years. It's an excellent read, a memoir as well as a recipe book. It significantly changed the way that I thought about food and cooking.

                    2. I just received American Century Cookbook by Jean Anderson and barely had time to flip through. Looks charming but for the life of me I can't remember what possessed me to order it. I know there was a good reason discussed on these boards, but what was it?!!

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: herby

                        I love Jean Anderson. She has been writing about food pretty much as long as I've been reading about it. That book is an interesting history of 20th C food and is definitely worthwhile to read. I've only made the grapefruit cake out of it and we weren't crazy about it (recipe worked fine, flavor didn't appeal as much as I expected it to). Books of hers to cook out of are the Portugal one (inspired me to go to Lisbon on holiday), "Jean Anderson Cooks" (very personal and enjoyable boook), and the new one on braising. The Southern one is excellent but I haven't cooked from it. She is one of my heroines!

                        1. re: herby

                          Don't have American Century, but in addition to the books mentioned by buttertart, I have her food processor and microwave cookbooks. I don't use either for cooking that much (although she has some excellent recipes in both books), but her timing charts are along worth the price of the book. In fact, I just made myself an artichoke for dinner, checked the instructions in Micro Ways, and had a perfectly cooked artichoke, as I knew I would.

                          Jean is also the author of The New Doubleday Cookbook (which is no longer very new), which I think is the best of all the old compendium cookbooks--better than Joy, Good Housekeeping, and Fannie Farmer. One of the reasons is because Jean is just about the best recipe writer in the business. Her instructions are always clear and the recipes always work.

                          I have cooked from A Love Affair with Southern Cooking which, by the way, is as much of a joy to read as it is to cook from, and it didn't disappoint. I bought Falling Off the Bone just before leaving the country for a couple of months so haven't had a chance to cook from it yet. But when I returned, I found a note tucked into the book from the friend who was staying in my apartment. She said, "Love, love, love this book! If veal shanks weren't so expensive my husband would insist I make that ossobuco recipe every week."

                          1. re: JoanN

                            The veal stifado-style stew (cooked uncovered) in it is divine.

                            1. re: JoanN

                              Thank you for your replies, BT and JoanN! I have Falling off th Bone and made something out of it that was good but do not recall at the moment (and do not have book with me). Will try her osso bucco which everyone in the family loves as well as the veal stew - thanks for suggestions! I would love to buy a good solid Portugese book - do you think that Jean's is the one I should consider?

                                1. re: herby

                                  No question. You never go wrong with Jean Anderson.

                                  1. re: JoanN

                                    I heartily agree, I have the two you have, A Love Affair with Southern Cooking and Falling...and I'm so glad I bought them.

                            2. Truth be told, I haven't bought any cookbooks in a few months, but I do have a list of newer or recently published books I want, to say nothing of my long list of books that have been out for some time. I appreciate any feedback offered if my choices are worth the pennies or not:

                              Pasta Italiana: 100 Recipes from Fettuccine to Conchiglie
                              by Gino D'Acampo
                              Like I need another pasta book, but it looks good.

                              Sinfully Easy Delicious Desserts
                              by Alice Medrich

                              The Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying and Start Making
                              by Jennifer May

                              I really want this one:
                              Ancient Grains for Modern Meals: Mediterranean Whole Grain Recipes for Barley, Farro, Kamut, Polenta, Wheat Berries & More
                              by Maria Speck

                              And this one:
                              The Italian Baker, Revised: The Classic Tastes of the Italian Countryside--It​s Breads, Pizza, Focaccia, Cakes, Pastries, and Cookies
                              by Carol Field

                              Bittersweet: Lessons from My Mother's Kitchen
                              by Matthew McAllester

                              Mycophilia: Revelations from the Weird World of Mushrooms
                              by Eugenia Bone

                              My Pizza: The Easy No-Knead Way to Make Spectacular Pizza at Home
                              Jim Lahey (Author), Rick Flaste (Author)

                              Tender: A Cook and His Vegetable Patch
                              by Nigel Slater

                              The Cheesemonger's Kitchen
                              by Chester Hastings

                              The Food, Folklore, and Art of Lowcountry Cooking
                              by Joseph E. Dabney

                              buttertart's mention of Paula Peck's seminal "The Art of Fine Baking" caused me to pull my ancient copy out for a reread as well. I see poster pavlova mentioned Warm Bread and Honey Cake; that one is on one of my odd lists as well.

                              5 Replies
                              1. re: bushwickgirl

                                Nigel Slater's Tender was COTM during September 2011 and I, for one, Loved it. In fact I love everything about the 3 of his books I own so of course I'm going to recommend it to you. But here's a link to his COTM main thread with links to the reporting threads.so you can decide for yourself.


                                1. re: Gio

                                  Thank you, Gio. I will check that link out.

                                2. re: bushwickgirl

                                  I am going to keep an eye out in my favorite used book stores for Paula Peck... looks like a valuable resource!!

                                  1. re: bushwickgirl

                                    I just wanted to give a big thumbs up for Ancient Grains by Maria Speck. I love her unique approach to using grains and what I've made from this book so far has been very good. Added bonus: it's a nice read as well.

                                  2. I bought Nigella Lawson's Kitchen recently. Her recipes can be very hit and miss, but I love the style and her writing. This book has a lot of family friendly recipes that she prepares for her now teenage kids, rather than dinner-party specials, which makes it much more useful to me. African drumsticks and her version of rice and peas have already become frequent fliers in my kitchen rota. There are also a lot of suggestions for left-overs and freezing / prep ahead notes which encourage you to go beyond the "chuck it in the microwave" route.

                                    1. I purchased Unforgettable Desserts by Dede Wilson after Buttertard made that fabulous looking cake, and recommended the book. From the sublime to the ridiculous, I also picked up the Weight Watchers Points Plus cookbook at Costco. I am sure it's less fun than Unforgettable Desserts will be! (And for all you bargain hunters, it was $4.41 new, including shipping, from a seller on abebooks.com!)

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: roxlet

                                        That sounds like exactly the kind of thing that I would do.. I have two bookshelves of cookbooks. A smaller shelf of fairly healthy general cookbooks, and then a larger shelf of dessert cookbooks.

                                        1. re: rstuart

                                          I feel you. Oh, how I do feel you!

                                      2. Here are some highlights of my recent purchases:

                                        My recent Cinco de Mayo cook-a-thon reminded me just how much I love Mexican food. As a result, I decided to add the following books to my collection:

                                        The New Complete Book of Mexican Cooking by Elisabeth Lambert Ortiz - highly recommended by a Mexican shopkeeper I met when purchasing supplies for my fiesta. Looks like a lovely book with authentic recipes.

                                        El Charro Cafe Cookbook by Jane & Michael Stern w recipes by Carlotta Flores. I had the pleasure of dining here on a visit to Tucson and to this day it stands out as one of the most wonderful, memorable Mexican meals I've eaten. I've been eyeing this book for a while and finally took the plunge.

                                        Rosa Mexicano by Josefina Howard - I recall seeing Ms Howard for the first time on an episode of Martha Stewart Living (many years ago now) and I immediately wanted to cook with her. I was happy to find this book on Abes and it looks great!!

                                        Next up is a book I was enticed to purchase after reading about it on the website of a local bookseller/kitchen shop owner who shares our passion for all things cooking. It's a British book called:

                                        Everyday & Sunday recipes from Riverford Farm by Guy Watson & Jane Baxter. -

                                        I loved the book's concept...organized by the calendar and what's fresh & in season, each chapter includes quick & easy recipes for weeknights (everyday) and scrumptious-sounding, more involved recipes for weekend cooking (Sunday). I'd tabbed so many recipes that I finally gave up and have just kept the book in the kitchen so I won't forget about!

                                        Two Italian books that caught my eye:

                                        Giorgio Locatelli's Made in Sicily which I'm just itching to cook from!!

                                        Lucio's Ligurian Kitchen by Lucio Galletto & David Dale - if the recipes are half as good as the "food-porn-like" photos I'll be a happy cook with this book!

                                        Finally another book that I'd been waiting to find at a decent price and finally managed to do so:

                                        Little Foods of the Mediterranean by Clifford Wright - I love his other books and have heard nothing but raves about this one. This is the perfect "summer cookbook" for me and my mouth was watering as I first flipped through it!

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                          I've had my eye on that Riverford book too. I used to get a weekly veg box from them, which always contained a recipe card along with excellent quality seasonal veggies delivered to my door. The field kitchen at the farm in Dorset gets very good reviews.

                                          1. re: greedygirl

                                            It really is a lovely book gg. So nice in fact that I had to read about their first one and with such strong reviews, it seems I've ordered it....oops! ; - )

                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                              How very careless of you BC. ;-)

                                              Luckily it's my birthday in a month, so I'm compiling a nice, long wishlist.

                                        2. I just receive the new Canal House Cooking book (Volume #7), which is Italian cooking. Like the previous 6 volumes, it is lovely and I want to make everything in it. Now, this begs the question: I have all 7 of their books, I love them all, and I've never cooked from a single one! I think I have to remedy this!!

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: roxlet

                                            Is the title of your new Canal House book La Dolce Vita, roxlet? If so that's the only one of the CH series I own. I think a few of the regular COTMers are going to cook from the series from time to time....


                                            Plus replies following.

                                            1. re: Gio

                                              You know, I thought that was going to be the title, but all it says is Volume 7. Unlike the other volumes, it's got a cover that looks like marbleized paper. Is that the one you have, Gio?

                                          2. Need some advice: while at Chapters over my lunch hour, I notice some hard copy versions of Bon Appetit Desserts (a truly massive tome) for $19.99. Given that the list price in Canada is $45.00.. I was tempted. Does anyone else have it? Is it worth it??

                                            15 Replies
                                            1. re: rstuart

                                              I just picked it up rstuart so I haven't any experience to share but, you might want to swing by HomeSense as I found mine there in their reduced area for $7.

                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                Wow... that's good to know.. you're also in Toronto, right?

                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                  Yes rstuart...I found it at the Yonge st store (near Queen)

                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                    That's the one near my work!! Will check it out at lunch...

                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                      Well, the Bon Appetit wasn't there.. but Elinor Klivans "Chocolate Cakes" was. I took it out of the library some time ago and really liked it.. so I paid my $5.99 and got it!

                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                        Great buy on the cake book rstuart and sorry about BA. If I spot it elsewhere I'll report back here ....

                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                          You're better off with Klivans.
                                                          I got my Peck from ABE for almost nothing and it's a first edition.

                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                            I wondered what the difference was between the editions? Possibly the later version is just a reprint...

                                                            1. re: buttertart

                                                              Buttertart, I just ordered Peck's dessert book off Abebooks based solely on your endorsement; I am not too much of a dessert person but love to have a book or two to rely on. My go-to has been Marlene Sorosky books and it is time to expand my dessert horizon:)

                                                              I also ordered Rick Bayless book that I wished for awhile:)

                                                              Moving to the Lake House in NY for a month and looking for great recipes to cook for/with my adorable grandboys:)

                                                    2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                      I hit Homesense tonight (Red Deer AB) found the Entenmann's Big Book of Baking for $9.99-picked it up for the sake of curiosity & nostalgia. Also saw Trish Magwood's In My Mother's Kitchen for $24.99 but decided to wait on that one-glad I did, Chapters has it online for $15.67 (member price)

                                                      1. re: maplesugar

                                                        The Entenmann's book is going back. Upon second look there's a whole swath devoted to "Almost Homemade." ick.

                                                    3. re: rstuart

                                                      I have it but have only made one thing from it (a mixed nut tart, very good but very sweet and must have had 100 cals per cubic centimeter. The recipes seem to me to suffer from the let's throw every modish ingredient in and let 'er rip syndrome. Get the Paula Peck instead.

                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                        Ha! I remember getting it out the the library, but I was so overwhelmed by options I didn't make anything from it. Maybe I'll try getting it out again and will see before I commit (unless I find it for $7 at Homesense like Breadcrumbs!). Checked ABE books for Paula Peck and there are some great prices on there for her!!! The shipping would be more than the book itself..

                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                          I paid $10 through the Good Cook Club. For cheap, go for it. Wish I'd known about that bookstore in March.

                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                            Yeah... they're all used on ABE, so it's a bit of a gamble...probably worth it though!

                                                    4. Just took up Saveur on their reasonably-priced "The New Comfort Food - Home Cooking from Around the World." Gorgeous and nicely-written, as you'd expect, edited by James Oseland, Saveur's Editor-in-chief and the contributor of several pieces himself. It tickled me that a couple of his Mexican dishes are from La Abeja in L.A., which he fell in love with years ago when he lived in Silver Lake, and we fell in love with a bit more recently (especially those Huevos Rancheros he celebrates). I've not cooked anything from it yet, although I've picked up some tips about stuff I do cook already - and that's pretty much what I use cookbooks for anyway. The Huevos Rancheros are on the To-Do List, however.

                                                      1. Le Bonne Femme Cookbook by Wini Moranville (French "home" cooking).

                                                        I bought one for myself, was impressed, so bought one for my daughter and daughter-in-law. They love it and now several friends have bought it. It focuses on everyday French cooking.
                                                        Here's a link to a website the author has created in connection with the book. Several recipes from the book are available on the website, so you can get an idea of what's in the book.

                                                        1. After seeing an incredible recipe for a pull-apart lemon coffee cake from Flo Braker's Baking for All Occasions, I ordered a copy from a seller on abebooks.com. A new copy was $6.31. I have one of her other baking books, and I am excited to receive this one. I received Unforgettable Desserts by Dede Wilson today, and it is a really interesting book. Her flavor combinations seem pretty original. I must take a closer look and decide what I want to bake from it.

                                                          9 Replies
                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                            Roxlet; I bought my mother a copy of Flo Braker's "The Simple Art of perfect baking" a few years ago, and i must admit that every time I visit her, I consider stealing it from her shelf (along with Maida Heatters' book of great desserts)! I think that I got Dede Wilson's "unforgettable desserts" out of the library a while ago but had to return it.. time to check that one out again?
                                                            I need a new bookshelf, and I blame this board.

                                                            1. re: rstuart

                                                              The Simple Art of Perfect Baking was a book given to me for Christmas one year by someone who used to work for me. It holds a lot of memories of a time and place. I'm really looking forward to the other one I ordered! And don't blame us for being an addict. Well, on second thought -- go ahead, blame us. We are all in this together!

                                                              1. re: roxlet

                                                                You know what? I've never read anything by Flo Braker. Must rectify this situation.

                                                                1. re: buttertart

                                                                  She has a longstanding column in the San Francisco Chronicle called (unsurprisingly) The Baker.


                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                    The Simple Art of Perfect Baking contains the recipe for Crystal Almond Pound Cake, one of my favorite recipes of all time. It's somewhat similar to the almond cake in NYT Essential, but I like Flo Braker's version even better.

                                                                    1. re: JoanN

                                                                      I made that one once. It was excellent!

                                                                  2. re: roxlet

                                                                    Yes, my addiction predates finding out about the board...but it has certainly gotten worse!

                                                                  3. re: rstuart

                                                                    This from David Lebovitz, in his blog with a recipe of Pain d'Epices:
                                                                    "It’s tough call, but I’d have to say that Flo Braker is my favorite baker in the world. Having known her for a few decades, I can’t think of another baker that I like more. And I won’t apologize to any other bakers out there, because I think they’d pretty much agree with me. When I was writing my first book, I remember leafing through her book, The Simple Art of Perfect Baking, amazed how this gorgeous, elegant woman had made cake-making such a seemingly simple affair. I was in awe."

                                                                  4. re: roxlet

                                                                    I found that book (the Flo Braker) at TJ Maxx recently - definitely not 6 bucks but affordable nevertheless. Have yet to cook from it but was just thinking about pulling off the shelf. If you have any other recipes you like I'd love to hear.

                                                                  5. Because of a mention in "The New Spanish Table", I bought
                                                                    "Cocina Monacal
                                                                    Secretos Culinarios de las Hermanas Clarisas"
                                                                    There are some beautiful pictures of Spanish convents, and recipes from the the Poor Clare nuns. (Recipes meant for honored guests, it seems!)
                                                                    It's in Spanish, which I don't speak or read, but Google Translate is making perfect sense. I'm planning to do at least a couple of recipes from this book for this month's Cookbook of the Month (the COTM companion thread.) Having a great time (so far) with the language. Soon comes the cooking.

                                                                    1. I hadn’t bought a new cookbook in more than three months, so when The Good Cook had a 50% off sale, the itch had to be scratched. After some very positive reports here (thanks, dkennedy), I bought The Cheesemonger’s Kitchen. Took it for a test drive last night with Twice-Baked Potatoes with Midnight Moon Goat Cheese. Had to substitute a different aged goat’s milk cheese, but can’t imagine it could have been any better with the cheese called for. Very auspicious debut; I’ll be looking forward to trying more recipes from this appealing book.

                                                                      9 Replies
                                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                                        Midnight Moon Cheese is absolutely fantastic. Try to source it if at all possible.

                                                                        1. re: dkennedy

                                                                          Wonder if it's a west coast cheese. Not at either Fairway or Zabars, but with your recommendation I'll be sure to stop in at Murray's next time I'm in the nabe and see what he has to say about availability.

                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                            Midnight Moon is one of my favorite cheeses and is indeed easily available in CA (including Whole Foods).

                                                                            1. re: JoanN

                                                                              Yes, it is. From Cypress Grove in Humboldt County, CA, which also produces Humboldt Fog and other lovely goat cheeses.


                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                I know I've found Humbolt Fog here in the past, just can't remember where. Essex Street market maybe? Need to do a more concentrated search. Anyway, the potatoes were terrific with the substitute. Can't imagine how great they might be with the real deal.

                                                                                1. re: JoanN

                                                                                  Yes, the Cheesemonger's Kitchen is a true find!

                                                                              2. re: JoanN

                                                                                I've found it at Whole Foods in Indianapolis, so it's probably available across the US>

                                                                              3. re: JoanN

                                                                                The Kindle edition is just 3.99.

                                                                              4. I just got a copy of Canal House Cooking Vol 1: Summer from Amazon, sight unseen. I am underwhelmed and will probably return it - something I never do!

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                  Tell more! I ordered three Canal Books sight unseen based on love they get here - what do you not love/like? Mine are not shipped yet (from bookscloseouts.com) but most likely charged already. I love buying from them because it diverts books from a landfill but they have a certain way of doing business and once your order is received, it is a done deal:)

                                                                                  1. re: herby

                                                                                    Not many recipes that yelled "make me now" plus a lot of basic stuff I know already like vinaigrette. I honestly van't see myself using it, so will return to Amazon. It might just be this particular one though as I remember leafing through a different issue in a bookshop in NYC and being much more impressed.

                                                                                2. My two "new" books just arrived in the mail today... Following roxlet's lead a week or two back, I ordered Unforgettable Desserts from Abe Books, as well as La Nouvelle Patisserie. I only had a moment to start flipping through them. I'm excited to read both... I will preemptively say a $7.67 well spent.

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Emme

                                                                                    Qu'est-ce que c'est La Nouvellle Pãtisserie?

                                                                                    1. re: buttertart

                                                                                      Ecrit par Jean-Yves Duperret... Tu peux le voir ici. Négliger la revue. Il a rien de faire avec les contenus du livre..
                                                                                      ou ici

                                                                                  2. TGC is having their Memorial Day sale (4 for $10 each) and I have a few books in my cart. Wonder if anyone is familiar with Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila and The Farm by Ian Knauer. Also wondering if Peterson's Vegetables, Revised is worth getting.

                                                                                    1. "The Ploughman's Lunch and the Miser's Feast." COTM worthy.

                                                                                      1. Speaking of pastry books, anyone look at the Pierre Hermé one?

                                                                                        1. Two books were on my doorstep when I arrived home tonight:

                                                                                          Salads: Beyond The Bowl by Mindy Fox - I have 2 of Ms Fox's books and find her writing style to be engaging and thorough. This book is aligned with my thinking in terms of summer meals so I just had to add it to my shelf. I knew I'd made a good choice when mr bc was looking across the table as I flipped through it saying things like "that looks good" and "are we having that tomorrow"!!

                                                                                          The Spice Necklace by Ann Vanderhoof - part cookbook, and bigger part true account of a food-lover's travels in the Caribbean. I loved ms Vanderhoof's first book, "An Embarrassment of Mangoes" and look forward to reading and cooking from this book. The author is a Canadian (Torontonian to be specific) who walked away from her job to sail the Caribbean. She's a journalist who's written food/travel pieces for newspapers, the web and magazines (including Gourmet).

                                                                                          Oh, and I also ordered a book from Amazon today (begrudgingly I might add, given the hefty price):

                                                                                          Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini: The Essential Reference, 500 Recipes and 275 Photographs by Elizabeth Schneider

                                                                                          I ended up biting the bullet on this one because I'd read a lot of great things about it and, it met my "EYB - books to consider" criteria. Whenever I search my books for a recipe in EYB, if I come up empty-handed I search the recipes in the Library and keep note of books that repeatedly have recipes I'm interested. When I found some fiddlehead recipes today this was the 10th time this book had produced something of interest so I ended up adding it to my cart and checking out! I'll let you know what I think and would love to hear if others have it.

                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                            That Spice Necklace was named one of the best food books in the NYT Summer Books of 2010, as I recall. I should read it. My oldest brother and his wife (now living in RH, ON) spent several years doing the same thing, wonder if they know each other ;-)
                                                                                            I had the Schneider when it came out (she wrote several books in the 70's-80's) but it has fallen by the wayside. It is a very good reference.
                                                                                            Do you have the Jane Grigson Vegetable Book? That one I would never be parted from. Nor the Fruit Book.

                                                                                            1. re: buttertart

                                                                                              I wasn't aware The Spice Necklace had done so well bt but I'm delighted to hear it. I loved her first book and I got the impression it was really only marketed in Canada at the time. It wouldn't surprise me at all if your brother crossed paths w these folks along the way. It definitely seems as though the sailing community is a tight knit one.

                                                                                              I'd love to travel to all the islands as well but I think a yacht or a plane is more my speed! A sail boat seems like way too much work and worry for me!

                                                                                              I didn't have JG's books until I read your post bt but rest-assured, I couldn't resist the temptation to order them!! Thanks for that, you enabler you!! ; - ) Thank goodness for Abes, at least I didn't have to pay full price!!

                                                                                            2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                              I love Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini: The Essential Reference, 500 Recipes and 275 Photographs by Elizabeth Schneider and have never regretted spending the money on it.

                                                                                              It is a fantastic reference. Many of the recipes are more of a suggestion, ie "Chef Abe likes to lightly steam these and then toss with a Caribbean inspired curry sauce and serve over ...". There are also a number of more formal recipes. Since I tend to use cookbooks as inspiration I find the suggestions terrific for brainstorming. This is the first book I look at when using a new to me vegetable!

                                                                                              1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                Thanks so much for sharing this feedback meatn, much appreciated. I too love to look through my cookbooks for inspiration and this sounds like a great book for doing just that. I also liked the notion that the book included many lesser-know vegetables. I'm fortunate to live in a city with many ethnic markets and it's fun to pick up something I've never seen before then come home to figure out what I'm going to do w it.

                                                                                              2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                "EYB - books to consider"

                                                                                                What a very clever thing to do. I don't think I've ever searched for a recipe that wasn't in my own collection. Sounds, though, as if it might lead me down a path I'm not sure I want to follow. There are only so many cookbooks you can fit into a one-bedroom NYC apartment and I'm just about at my limit. Were do you put them all?

                                                                                                1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                  Well Joan that is the dilemma, where to put all those books?!! But for about 20 that I have precariously stacked atop a much-too-small-for-the-task tiny kitchen stool, all my other books are on bookshelves that are strategically placed throughout the house. I've gradually been converting our main floor guest room into a cookbook library!! I feel bad for mr bc who had hopes of converting it into a games room!! My goal is to cook at least one dish from each book. If I had to guess, I'd say I've got that covered for about 60% of my collection. I wish I had neighbours who liked to cook so my books would get more use!

                                                                                              3. A neighbour was having a multi-family fund-raising garage sale today. Aside from a lovely deco-era glass bowl ($2), I picked up these books ($1 hard-cover, 50¢ paperbacks):

                                                                                                The best traditional recipes of Greek Cooking (printed in Athens) Editions Dimitri Haitalis

                                                                                                Magic in the Kitchen (various including Child, Bastianich, Bayless, Boulud, Keller, JGV etc)

                                                                                                Grazing - Julie Van Rosendaal

                                                                                                Scottish Regional Recipes - Catherine Brown (it had me when I saw "Grans recipe" scrawled in the margin beside a recipe for Sour Skons (sic)

                                                                                                Breakfast at Brennan's and Dinner Too - the Brennans of NOLA

                                                                                                A Taste of Quebec - Julian Armstrong

                                                                                                Canyon Ranch Cooks - Correia & Uehlein

                                                                                                Entree to Asia - Thomas Robson (a book published for the Canadian PBS cooking program)

                                                                                                21 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                  I have Grazing... it's getting tattered enough that it's about time I get another. The pizza dough and berry white chocolate scone recipes are in frequent rotation. :)

                                                                                                  1. re: maplesugar

                                                                                                    That's great to know maplesugar! I've made notes on the two recipes you've mentioned and I especially liked that the scone recipe allows for the use of frozen, unthawed fruit. Perfect for most months when berries are not in season here!

                                                                                                    ETA: Oooh and I just noticed the Orange/Cranberry variation as well...Yum!

                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                      I really like Julie van Rosendaal's blog (dinnerwithJulie), but I'd never checked out any of her cookbooks. Clearly a situation that I will have to remedy soon...

                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                        ...and I'll have to check out her blog rstuart, thank-you! This book looks great, very accessible. As I looked through it I thought it would be a great book to take along in a suitcase for those food vacations. Looks like a great book.

                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                          It's great.. she has tons of wonderful recipes, and I like her tone... it's not too precious, if that makes any sense!

                                                                                                  2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                    Just a quick note/update on "A Taste of Quebec" which has already earned its keep at my house. I was flipping through it and noticed a fiddlehead recipe along with a nifty tip for removing their brown, paper-like skins. Although we love fiddleheads, I don't buy them as frequently as I could in season because those skins are such a pain to remove. Well, the book suggests that you place the dry fiddleheads in a paper bag and shake them to remove these pesky skins. Since I just happened to have picked some up yesterday (first of the season) I pulled them from the fridge and gave it a try. Guess what? Success!! Much to my amazement, 90% of the skins had simply fallen off. Guess what we're having as a side dish w tonights dinner?

                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                      Nice when that kind of thing happens! Fiddleheads are rather hard to come by here :(

                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                        I wondered about that bt as I was surprised to see how few fiddlehead recipes there were in my EYB search. I then expanded the search to the entire EYB library and that didn't produce many more recipes. It made me wonder if Fiddleheads were more of a Canadian dish. I did find recipes in many of my non-indexed Canadian cookbooks.

                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                          I wouldn't even know what a fiddlehead looked like if I fell over it at the farmer's market! Not something we have here.

                                                                                                          1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                            They're a wild plant, named for their shape, which resembles the end of a fiddle (violin): http://www.google.com/search?q=fiddle...

                                                                                                            Definitely only grow in certain parts of North America. Not the West Coast AFAIK, but I understand they're plentiful in Ontario.

                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                Agreed bt! Last night I prepared them using a recipe from Molly O'Neill's "A Well Seasoned Appetite". It seems to be the first recipe I've used from this book. I chose it for its simplicity. Fiddleheads Steamed in Lemon Oil. In the end, I don't think the lemon oil mixed into the steaming water did anything as its flavour failed to infuse the fiddleheads. I drizzled some lemon oil atop the plated dish though along w some pink salt and all was well in the world! We particularly love them in pasta w some morels. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get morels on Friday though.

                                                                                                                Does anyone here have A Well Seasoned Appetite? Any thoughts?

                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                  How were the fiddleheads? Despite living in Ontario for about 15 years, I've never had one. Oddly enough, we recently had a warning about the importance of rinsing/cooking your fiddleheads well in the paper.. there were 5 cases of illness associated with fiddlehead consumption.

                                                                                                                  1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                    They were really nice rstuart. I've been preparing them for years but as I mentioned above, up to now, I've found it frustrating removing the paper-like skins. Their flavour and texture is so fresh and for us, they just scream spring-time since they're usually the first locally grown green vegetable aside from ramps that we can get to our table. We think of them as a treat. I'm sure if they were available year round they'd lose some of their appeal.

                                                                                                                    I do recall reading something in the paper recently about cooking/cleaning them. IMHO the recommended steaming time was about double what's adequate to produce a properly cooked fiddlehead. I steam mine for approx 7 mins. Like most vegetables, they're far less appealing if they're overcooked and I'd rather take a pass than have them soggy!

                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                      The only time I saw them here was at our anniversary dinner this year at Annisa, as a garnish on a veal dish. A whole 2 of them! (Don't you have to be careful about which fern it is? Some aren't edible.)
                                                                                                                      Morels...still kicking myself from when I was a (extremely picky) kid and I turned my nose up at the 2 shopping bags full my dad and his buddy foraged around our cottage (Port Franks) the spring after a forest fire in the area. "Eww, look like brains..." What a dope I was.

                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                        What a shame about those morels bt!! Ah well, lots of time left to make up for it! I'm hoping our local mushroom farmer will have some this year. She had some spores last year and was going to give them a try. I also suggested porcini.... (fingers crossed!) For some reason they're near impossible to find at the markets here I find.

                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                          <"(Don't you have to be careful about which fern it is? Some aren't edible.)">

                                                                                                                          Ostrich ferns are the ferns that are native to the Northeastern area of the country including maritime Canada and the ones we usually find at farm stands here. All ferns produce fiddleheads but many have health warnings so it's certainly wise to know what's OK to eat in your area. Also, it's important to know how to harvest fiddleheads: only three of the seven fiddleheads should be taken from any one plant... anymore than that will kill the fern plant.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                            The ones sold in Ontario are also from Ostrich ferns.
                                                                                                                            What can I say.. I work in public health, so I'm a worrywart about that kind of thing! You should see what I do to chicken...

                                                                                                                2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                  this isnt a bad description.
                                                                                                                  Maybe its more accurate to say its not a commercial crop on the West coast.

                                                                                                                  I think fiddleheads (fern frond) is a fairly common dish in korea - I see it in bibim bap.

                                                                                                          2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                            BC, I have "A Taste of Quebec" but never cooked from it. Please sheare other treasures from it and I will give it a good look over once I am back at home end of June.

                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                              Absolutely herby. It looks like a great book. I've tabbed numerous recipes and was impressed by the author's variations and alternate preparations.

                                                                                                        2. Today two used books came from Abe in excellent shape: Mexico One Plate at a Time by Rick Bayless and Paula Peck's The Art of Fine Baking. Can't wait to look through them and start flagging things to make:)

                                                                                                          Still debating on my TGC sales choices...

                                                                                                          1. I love old cookbooks for the sheer comedy, but, honestly... I don't think I'll ever buy another "new" cookbook as long as I live. God, I love the internet!!

                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                            1. re: staughton

                                                                                                              There is a lot on the internet but most of what I buy now would be something from a specific person. Sometimes I get them first from the library to make sure I will use them but sometimes at thrift stores they are just $1-2 it is cheaper than going to the library. I pass them along if I don't use them.

                                                                                                            2. I just received STIR, which is a really interesting books with quite a number of inventive, yet simple-sounding dishes. I see that breadcrumbs has commented a lot on this book on EYB, and she seems to be a fan.

                                                                                                              1. That ole debbil Good Cook Club had One of Their Sales (if you got 4 books under $35 value, they were $9 apiece)...I got the upcoming Kochilas (Country Food of Greece -- I love her, I love Greek food, and I love Athens...plus have fond memories of a very handsome Greek boyfriend in hs); one on Turkey (the country) that looked very good (by Leanne Kitchen); Julia's Cats, and Vintage Cakes. All as yet unreleased. Only got the $10 per book deal, since the Kochilas was over the $35 limit, so used 12 points to get it for $7.99. !!! All 4 for the retail price of the Kochilas.

                                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                  You're more clever than I -- I missed that Greek and that Turkish cookbook. Vintage cakes is definitely on my radar though!

                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                    Not keen on another Greek book but Turkey looks great! Thank you for bring this one up to my attention, BT!

                                                                                                                    I got a few books for $9 each: Balls Preserving, Sarabeth's Bakery, The Homemade Pantry, Simple Asian Meals and Ruhlman's Twenty. I won'y keep all but figure some will be very good presents.

                                                                                                                    1. re: herby

                                                                                                                      I was thinking about the Homemade Pantry. You know about "Better than Store-Bought", from the olden days (1970's)? GREAT book.

                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                        I do not know that one but have "Fancy Pantry" from the 80s and love it. Hope this one will have a few amazing recipes and tips:)

                                                                                                                        1. re: herby

                                                                                                                          I like Better than Store-Bought better ;-)

                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                            Ha! And I like Fancy Pantry better ;-) But maybe that's just because the ginger marmalade--on those rare occasions when I can find stem ginger--is an all-time favorite. Love, love, love the corn relish, too.

                                                                                                                            1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                              I made many things out of Fancy Pantry over the years and have not been dissapointed.

                                                                                                                        2. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                          I finally received my TGC order and spent time this evening with Homemade Pantry. It is not what I thought it would be but some enticing recipes and lovely chapter on cheese making; burger buns look very good and a few other things. The actual homemade pantry items that I was looking for are not that exciting - five-spice blend and no mention what to do with the cinnamon stick once it is toasted with other spices - things like that (and there are a few) put me off but there are other things that I will use. So, for $9 it is staying:)

                                                                                                                          I also received Simple Asian Meals by Nina Simonds and from the first look over I think I would love making many of these meals. Definitely not one of those serious authentic tomes but a fun book along the lines of Mighty Spice.

                                                                                                                    2. just ordered Flo Braker's Simple Art of Perfect Baking -- I got it for 4 bucks and figured I should own it.

                                                                                                                      the other one I've been making myself wait to buy because I have no business spending money on more books, but this one was worth it for me, and i just couldn't wait any longer... The Art of Royal Icing by Eddie Spence. the man is my god... only bummer is it's shipping from the UK, so a long lag time... booo.

                                                                                                                      1. Okay, I told myself I could NOT buy anymore cookbooks. Like many of you, I have a little problem with buying cookbooks. Even though I tell myself it's a harmless habit compared too--say--making meth in the basement, there is a limit, as my mother used to say. My limit is shelf space!

                                                                                                                        But I did just buy:
                                                                                                                        *One Big Table (O'Neill)
                                                                                                                        *Pure Dessert (Alice Medrich--sp?)
                                                                                                                        *A Passion for Dessert (Emily Luchetti)---I got this one for $1.70. Less than a cup of coffee, so even if I read then give to Goodwill it's fine.

                                                                                                                        I have not had time to give these more than a quick glance. Anyone want to steer me to some "must make" recipes from these three cookbooks?

                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: soccermom13

                                                                                                                          Love the chestnut poundcake and ditto meringues from Pure Dessert. Put the candied Turkish chestnuts that come in jars in the poundcake. I used the meringues as dacquoise layers in a cake for my husband's birthday a year or more ago, a goodie.

                                                                                                                          1. re: soccermom13

                                                                                                                            In Pure Dessert, I've loved the Italian Chocolate-Almond Torte (minimalist easy, sophisticated flavor), Olive Oil-Sherry Pound Cake (wonderful flavor and crumb), Plum and Almond Tart (very easy and delicious; it's what's pictured in my CH avatar), Sour Cream Ice Cream (great with berries and stone fruits, or would be perfect with fruit pie).

                                                                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                              Buttertart and Caitlin,
                                                                                                                              Thanks for these suggestions. I have noted them.

                                                                                                                              1. re: soccermom13

                                                                                                                                s-mom, I can't believe I forgot to add a link to this thread, which has over 80 posts reporting on Pure Dessert: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/514833

                                                                                                                                It also reminded me that I had another winner from the book a few summers back in the Blackberry Buttermilk Sherbet.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                  Thanks so much for sharing this thread!

                                                                                                                          2. Hey Buttertart,
                                                                                                                            Did you ever choose and make the celebratory cake? If so, which one?
                                                                                                                            Have you ever made the Sicilian Pistachio Cake in Heavenly Cakes? That one looks so good to me.

                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                            1. re: soccermom13

                                                                                                                              That pistachio cake may be MY bday cake this year. It is gorgeous.
                                                                                                                              Yep, the walnut praline torte with espresso buttercream from Dede Wilson's "Unforgettable Desserts", an absolutely killer cake.

                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                Thanks, Buttertart. Pls report in if you make that pistachio cake :0)

                                                                                                                            2. Great Bar Food at Home, Kate Heyhoe, Alexandra Grablewsk:
                                                                                                                              No, I'm not using this book as a guide to bar-hopping but the recipes sounded so enticing in an article I was reading that I Had to have it.

                                                                                                                              The Meatball Shop Cookbook, Daniel Holzman:
                                                                                                                              Looking for a recipe for lamb meatballs I found one by Holzman, co-owner of the
                                                                                                                              Meatball Shop in NYC. The recipe sounded delicious as did other recipes I found after searching I Had to have this one too.

                                                                                                                              A Year in my Kitchen, Skye Gyngell:
                                                                                                                              This I Had to have because Greedygirl recommended it. LOL I've only had a chance to briefly scan it but I Love the seasonal chapters.

                                                                                                                              Honey from a Weed: Fasting and Feasting in Tuscany, Catalonia, the Cyclades and Apuli, Patience Gray:
                                                                                                                              Boy I Love this book. The stories, the memories, the recipes (well, there'll be some I won't be cooking like tongue, and other really awful offal), and the delightful pen and ink sketches.

                                                                                                                              36 Replies
                                                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                Glad to hear you decided to get Honey From a Weed Gio, as you know, I share the love for this one. I also picked up Skye's book recently but haven't had a chance to get a good look at it yet. The Meatball Shop book has a ton of enticing recipes. I made my first one from the book yesterday. A little issue w the execution but the flavours were great. More down-thread.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                  Honey From a Weed is a truly wonderful book tho I have never cooked from it. I was scared off of the Skye Gyngell book by the Amazon.uk reviews, however, which made me think I would hate it.. Hope you have a different take.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: jen kalb

                                                                                                                                    Wow, very interesting on the SG book Jen. I'll have to check out those reviews. It's not too late to return it so I appreciate your sharing this.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                      but I would be far more interested in what you think of the actual recipes than in what those anonymous folks think, BC! I always look on the UK site for reviews of the UK books, for obvious reasons.

                                                                                                                                2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                  Cavolo (Cabbage), Pg 168, Honey From A Weed

                                                                                                                                  This is really just a suggestion of a recipe for cabbage. It's in a paragraph that describes two ways of treating cabbage. One is simply a quick cold salad with oil and vinegar, the other is a ten minute braise with EVOO, garlic, onion, dill seeds, salt and pepper. We made the braise which would have been quite tasty but our heavy handed salt pincher struck again. He used the wok which worked very well and the red cabbage I had thinly sliced was well cooked: tender but still somewhat crisp. Definitely deserves a remake with an exact salt measurement.

                                                                                                                                  I haven't finished the book yet but decided to cook some of the recipes as they come along. Preceding this cabbage entry is a lengthy (several pages worth) description of the cause of the sound effects of cooked dry beans. TMI in MHO.... LOL

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                    Thanks for reporting on this. Years ago I read Honey From A Weed and was captivated but never cooked from it. You've inspired me to revisit the book and try cooking from it too!

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                      Thanks for reporting on this Gio. mr bc picked out a dish from that book when I asked him what I should make w some fresh peas I brought home from the market today. It's the Ribbon Pasta with Cream. mr bc LOVES anything with chicken, pasta and peas so it was no surprise he chose this. Unfortunately I wasn't in the mood for anything creamy today so I'm opting to make the Mustard-Garlic Chicken Paillards with Spring Peas and Lemon from a book I recently purchased called "The Farm". I'm serving this w a pasta tossed w garlic scape pesto and tomatoes.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                        I was debating about The Farm during recent TGC sale and decided not to get it. Should I reconsider? Amazon reviews for not great but what is your experience with the recipes?

                                                                                                                                        1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                          I'll let you know how this goes herby, it'll be the first recipe I'm trying from the book. I just purchased it recently and only had a chance to take a quick look at it this morning. I did feel the recipes looked appealing and since I had fresh peas and chicken breasts from a local poultry farm, this dish jumped out at me. I didn't realize there were poor reviews on Amazon but will keep you posted!

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                            I'll wait to hear from you, Breadcrumbs! With the farmers' markets opening up for the summer and kids soon out of schools and into the camp, I would love to cook more with fresh food from the farms.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                              Back to report on last night's dish herby.

                                                                                                                                              Mustard-Garlic Chicken Paillards with Spring Peas and Lemon - p. 32 - The Farm

                                                                                                                                              The photography in the book is lovely and that's what initially drew me to this recipe. an artistic arrangement of peas cascading over perfectly grilled chicken all laid out on a white plate...the dish really popped off the page. While mine may not have been so pretty, it was indeed tasty...especially the melange of peas. The lemon really enhanced the sweet, fresh flavours of the peas and made the dish in my view. Next time around I'd marinade the chicken for a longer duration as I didn't feel the flavours of the mustard mixture really came through. That said, the chicken provided the perfect canvas for the peas to shine. Great dish!

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                Beautiful! I have seen fresh peas yet - will keep my eyes open for them:)

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                  That looks nice BC... Here's the on-line recipe, and a couple of others, if anyone's interested... I Am!

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                    Thanks Gio. I'm actually making another dish from this book tonight. The Asparagus and Baby Potato Roast and if time permits, I'll make the Rhubarb-Sour Cream Crostata. I have an abundance of rhubarb so I sliced some up last night and figured it may be do-able on a weeknight if I used purchased puff pastry. It just depends how much energy I have at 7:30pm..... : - O

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                      Wow... Rhubarb Sour Cream Crostata sounds good!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                        It does, doesn't it rstuart! I'll be back to report if I have the time and energy to make it tonight!

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                        Just a quick update on dishes from this book. I managed to make both dishes I'd hoped to tonight and we thought they knocked it out of the park. The potato asparagus roast was sensational. Roasted veggies are dressed w shallots, wine vinegar and tarragon. The crostata was ridiculously good. So quick (w the store-bought puff pastry) and the flavours were amazing. The sour cream wasn't obvious in the finished dish but it added a creamy element to the fruit. Both dishes were unique and exceeded our expectations. 3 for 3 now!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                          Wow... those all look fabulous Breadcrumbs! I was a bit confused by the trail of books for this one..which cookbook did these come from??

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                            Thanks rstuart and sorry for the confusion. The three dishes are from The Farm cookbook.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                              The confusion was entirely mine. I will look for that cookbook at the library...

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                            The rhubarb sour-cream crostada sounds fantastic! Could please you paraphrase the recipe when you get a chance?

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                              Sure thing meatn3. As I mentioned, I didn't make the crust from the book and just used purchased puff pastry. I'm in Canada and prefer President's Choice brand.

                                                                                                                                                              Spread 1/4 sour cream on the pastry. Chop 1lb (approx 5 cups) rhubarb into 1" pieces the toss w 3/4 c sugar and 1 tsp lemon zest (I used lime) then spread fruit evenly over crust before folding up the edges. The book says to bake at 425° for 45-50 mins. Mine was done in 30. Bon Appetit!!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                Thank you! This sounds incredibly versatile - peaches would be nice with the sour cream.

                                                                                                                                                                I'm not a frequent baker and have not used puff pastry before. Are you constructing this free form and placing on a cookie sheet or using a pie or cake pan? Does the pan need to be greased?

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                  I did it freeform on a parchment lined baking sheet meatn but you could absolutely do it in a tin if you wished. If you are using puff pastry, you will not need to oil the pan as the dough has enough fat in my experience.

                                                                                                                                                                  I agree with you about peaches...what a great idea!

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                    Thank you! I'm having friends over for dinner in a few weeks and this sounds like a great dessert for the evening.

                                                                                                                                                                    We are at the tail end of rhubard season in NC and it will probably be over for my dinner. I think I'll try it with peaches or plums.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                      Sounds great meatn. If you do get a chance to try this, let us know how it goes.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                        I made this tonight for my first dinner party in my new home! The flavor was great.
                                                                                                                                                                        I had 3 large very juicy peaches which I blanched, skinned and diced. Used some sugar which I had infused with a nutmeg scented geranium and a scant tea. of ground mahlab. The juiciness concerned me so I added a little cornstarch to the mix.

                                                                                                                                                                        My friends arrived just as I was getting ready to pop it in the oven. In the chaos of getting their puppy settled down and showing them all the work done (had purchased a very scary foreclosed fixer-upper) the pastry sat a room temp. for perhaps 40 min. Totally my distraction and inexperience with puff pastry for the lack of poofery! I think it just got too soggy during the wait. Flavor was great - the peaches sang and the other flavors supported the fruit nicely.

                                                                                                                                                                        I'll try this again with more focus on my part. I think mascarpone or a ricotta could be nice in this dish. Oh! Mine was ready at 30 min. too.

                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks again for the details and encouragement!

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                  Ooh, that sounds wonderful - thanks for sharing (and thanks to meatn3 for asking for the recipe and also for suggesting peach sub; I'm imaging almonds somewhere in there with the peaches)!

                                                                                                                                                                  meatn3, if you make it and go the puff pastry route, the best brand I've had in the US is Dufour, which is all-butter and very, very good (unfortunately also very pricey, Like $10 or $12, quite a splurge). I've found it at Whole Foods on both the East and West coasts. http://www.dufourpastrykitchens.com/i...

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                    When I lived in the West Village, they used to make DuFour around the corner on Washington Street. We used to wander over to buy puff pastry when we needed it. They also made wonderful little puff pastry hors d'oeuvres.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks Caitlin. Funny you should mention this as I just took 2 more out of the oven. At the request of a neighbour I did a rhubarb-blueberry version today. Since blueberries tend to be juicier than rhubarb, I tossed the fruit in a tbsp or so of flour before adding the sugar to thicken up the syrup. Hopefully this combo tastes good!

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the U.S. suggestion!

                                                                                                                                                                        Funny you mentioning almonds...I love that flavor combo. Unfortunately my friend doesn't like nuts in sweets, so I was planning on adding some ground mahlab instead.

                                                                                                                                                      3. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                        I havn't tried any of the recipes yet, but I sure enjoyed reading this one, which I bought in the recent GC bundle sale.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                          I'm loving it too ncw and so far so good w the recipes. Now I'm 3 for 3!

                                                                                                                                                      4. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                        I'd not even heard of this book until I read your post and now I want the book. Chester County, PA is just north of where I lived in Delaware and just south of where I lived in PA (in the midwest now). I'm quite familiar with Chester Co. farm country and the Knauer name is very PA Dutch. Checked this out on Amazon and I think I must have that Green Bean recipe.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: nofunlatte

                                                                                                                                                          Thanks so much nofunlatte. FYI, there are 3 green bean recipes in the book (see the link below). My experience w the book so far has been great and there are a ton of other recipes I want to try.


                                                                                                                                                          The latest dish we made was the Honey Jalapeno Chicken Tenders which disappeared as quickly as we took them off the grill.

                                                                                                                                                          Since this isn't the optimal place for recipe reports and I intend to continue cooking from this book I think I'll resurrect the Cooking From The Farmer's Market thread I started last year. I'll add a link here once I've posted.

                                                                                                                                                          ETA: Here's the link to my most recent post on the "Cooking From The Farmers Market Thread" . . . fingers crossed that you'll cook along w me here! :


                                                                                                                                                  2. A previous TGC buy I finally cracked today, Couture Chocolate by William Curley, apparently a big cheese in the chocolate world in the UK (and a quite decorative Scotsman, from the looks of the pics in the book) -- very interesting, quite advanced in a lot of parts (I am not really a candymaker but if you make truffles and chocolates, definitely worthwhile). Did see a recipe for a brownie with sesame seeds and candied chestnuts that I'm going to have to try in it (his wife is Japanese and there are several Japanese-influenced items in the book -- matcha shortbread, Mont Blanc, etc). Also Millionaire's Shortbread, a recipe I've been avoiding forever because I know it would disappear down my gullet all too quickly.

                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                      Buttertart, I have the same feelings about Millionaire's Shortbread.. I've always been afraid to make it, because I suspect the pan would be done in one night! And there wouldn't be anyone else to blame!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                        Could you post the recipe? I would love to try it when there are lots of people around:)

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                          what i do...

                                                                                                                                                          Shortbread Base
                                                                                                                                                          142 g unsalted butter, softened
                                                                                                                                                          55 g sugar
                                                                                                                                                          1 medium yolk, or 1/2 large yolk
                                                                                                                                                          155-160 g flour (sometimes i use cake flour for a more tender crumb)
                                                                                                                                                          pinch of salt

                                                                                                                                                          Beat sugar and butter. Add yolk, then flour mixed with salt. Press into an 8x8 pan, and prick all over with a fork. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes til golden. Cool slightly.

                                                                                                                                                          Caramel Layer
                                                                                                                                                          1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk

                                                                                                                                                          Put it in a large microwave safe bowl. Put in the microwave on low-medium heat (like 30% power) for 15-20 minutes, stirring every two minutes. You want it to get golden, but still pourable. It will look like it's curdling toward the end, but just stir it up. Pour over the crust, and chill in the fridge. (You can also do it over the stovetop.)

                                                                                                                                                          Chocolate Topping
                                                                                                                                                          87 g semi-sweet or dark chocolate
                                                                                                                                                          57 g unsalted butter
                                                                                                                                                          2-3 dollops of corn syrup
                                                                                                                                                          Fleur de Sel or Coarse Sea Salt

                                                                                                                                                          Melt these together (on low in micro or over a double boiler). Whisk to cool slightly, then pour over caramel/shortbread base. Sprinkle with fleur de sel, or sea salt. Chill in the fridge.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Emme

                                                                                                                                                            Thank you, Emme! Sounds delicious - will make it as soon as there are lots of people around.

                                                                                                                                                    2. Someone on one of these cookbooks threads (I think) asked me to report back if I made anything from The Meatball Shop Cookbook. I made my first recipe yesterday and since I can't find the original post, I'll share my experience here and hopefully whoever asked me will see this post.

                                                                                                                                                      Mini Buffalo Chicken Balls from The Meatball Shop Cookbook – p. 9

                                                                                                                                                      I honestly couldn’t wait to make this recipe and I made a special trip to a local poultry farmer to get my ground chicken this weekend. Not sure whether my freshly ground chicken was more moist than the norm (it didn’t seem to be) or, whether there may be an issue with this recipe as my mixture was far too wet to form meatballs once all the required ingredients were incorporated. I compensated by adding more breadcrumbs until the mixture was firm enough to hold its shape. Even then, the meatballs did settle on the tray and ended up w flat bottoms. Fortunately this had no detrimental effect on their flavour though as these were wonderful. They tasted just like mild Buffalo wings. We served w some additional Franks and, some blue cheese dip alongside. Yum and I loved that these were a twist on an old favourite. This would make for great party food….Superbowl weekend perhaps?

                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                        This is the lamb meatball recipe that led me to buy the book...

                                                                                                                                                        About those meat balls you made: It seems to me that all that butter, plus oil, plus hot sauce sounds like too much liquid in the first place, never mind the fat content. Glad they tasted all right though. Thanks for the warning...

                                                                                                                                                      2. Caved again to Thegoodcook.com's Memorial Day sale, though three of the four books are pre-orders. As buttertart wickedly pointed out, there was an interesting Greek book as well as a Turkish one. I have no Turkish cookbooks, so I am excited to see this one. I preordered Vintage Cakes, and I'm looking forward to The Apple Lover's Cookbook. It's so hard to resist when they're only $9 each -- and no shipping!

                                                                                                                                                        1. FUCHSIA DUNLOP'S "EVERY GRAIN OF RICE" HAS BEEN RELEASED EARLIER THAN EXPECTED AND IS AVAILABLE FROM AMAZON.UK. Mine is on its way to me :) :) :)

                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                            Congratulations!:) Maybe Canadian version will be released earlier too - I am patiently waiting.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                              I hope so, for your sake. I know the Sichuan book came out in Canada long before the US ('cause I got mine there, visiting family).

                                                                                                                                                          2. A few recent purchases from my thrift store wanderings:

                                                                                                                                                            *Julia's Kitchen Wisdon
                                                                                                                                                            *New Menus from Simca's Cuisine - many recipes are heavier than my cooking these days, but there is an unmolded apple custard with macadamia-nut brittle which caught my eye!
                                                                                                                                                            ($1 each)

                                                                                                                                                            On the local front:
                                                                                                                                                            *Remembering Bill Neal - by Moreton Neal. Favorite recipes from his restaurants and family cooking
                                                                                                                                                            *Sweet Stuff - by Karen Barker.(autographed) She and her husband are closing their restaurant, Magnolia Grill, so I was delighted to find this gem

                                                                                                                                                            *Sara Moulton Cooks at Home
                                                                                                                                                            ($2 each)

                                                                                                                                                            And finally, not a cookbook, but a voyeurs look into other cooks lifes:
                                                                                                                                                            * Milk Eggs Vodka - grocery lists lost and found by Bill Keaggy

                                                                                                                                                            One list that begs a story is:
                                                                                                                                                            "Read, go to Kentucky, underwear, lemons"


                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                              Looks like you got some great deals meatn! I really like Sara Moulton's books. Her recipes are typically quick and easy to prepare and, in my experience, they produce great results. Enjoy!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                I love that Keaggy book--my BF has it.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: nofunlatte

                                                                                                                                                                  I agree with you. I was laughing out loud - so beware you may not want to read this in public ..

                                                                                                                                                              2. I thought I'd share this recent purchase in case there are any Brit-food fans here that might want to seek this out. Canadian Living has a limited edition magazine-type book out entitled:

                                                                                                                                                                "Cook Britain"

                                                                                                                                                                This is a publication to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. The recipes were developed and tested by Sainsbury's (UK supermarket chain). I liked the fact that they've included historical information about the origin of the traditional dishes. There is a very small section on modern favourites but the book's primary focus is on the easily recognizable dishes of Britain. I flipped through it in the store and thought it was worthy of a spot on my shelf. That said, I was disappointed there wasn't a proper English curry in the book. There is a Thai-inspired version in the modern section. CDN$15.99 - price is a bit steep.

                                                                                                                                                                I also discovered a discount & used book store yesterday and they have a pretty decent cookbook collection. I picked up:

                                                                                                                                                                Purple Citrus & Sweet Perfume by Silvena Rowe - does anyone know about this book? I have to say it is a visually stunning book with abundant photographs and the recipes sound absolutely incredible. To whet your appetite: Crunchy Red Swiss Chard Falafel, Crimson Beet Falafel, Three Tzatzikis: Beet, Spinach & Zucchini, Fennel and Feta Kofte with Walnut Tarator, Avocado & Sumac Whip, Jumbo Shrimp and Blood Orange Charmola Salad (are you drooling yet???), Sumac and Chili Spiced Rack of Lamb with Sweet Pomegranate Sauce, Pomegranate Glazed Kebabs with Spiced Pomegranate Chutney, Aleppo Pepper Marinated Chicken Kebab...seriously, is it just me or do these dishes sound ridiculously good?

                                                                                                                                                                Heat by Bill Buford - not a cook book but a cook's book for sure and it's been on my Amazon Wishlist forever so for $2.99 I was delighted to pick it up.

                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                  Interesting article on Silvena Rowe in the NYTimes about two years ago.


                                                                                                                                                                  I recall taking a look at it when it first came out. No longer sure why I decided to pass on it. Probably just a price issue. But it is indeed a stunning book.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                    Joan thank-you so much for sharing that article, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It had me wanting to google her on the weekend to see if there were any videos of her online, she sounds like she'd be really engaging.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                    I also bought this, breadcrumbs, but have yet to cook from it--but, yes, the visuals are gorgeous and the recipes are enticing. Must put it on the front burner!

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                      It really is a lovely book. Let's report here if we make anything (and remember where this post is!!) ; - )

                                                                                                                                                                  3. I've recently discovered chapters.indigo.ca takes debit.
                                                                                                                                                                    I just ordered:
                                                                                                                                                                    The Homesick Texan,
                                                                                                                                                                    Cookwise by Shirley Corriher
                                                                                                                                                                    Flour, by Joanne Chang
                                                                                                                                                                    and (last but not least)
                                                                                                                                                                    All About Braising, by Molly Stevens.

                                                                                                                                                                    I was tempted to buy Desserts by the Yard as a gift - it's in the Bargain Books section for far less than what I paid for my copy. Katzen's "Vegetable Heaven" was also in there for I think $5.00...but since I need more shelving as it is I decided to call it a day. : )

                                                                                                                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: maplesugar

                                                                                                                                                                      All about braising was a big favorite on COTM, but it's one that somehow slipped past me. I'm wondering if it's a must have. I really think Cookwise is brilliant, and one of these days I'm going to get Bakewise..

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                        Yes, IMHO, All About Braising is a must have. Here are a few reasons why: Sausages & Plums Braised in Red Wine; Moroccan Spice-Rubbed Lamb Shoulder Chops; Short Ribs Braised in Porter Ale with Maple-Rosemary Glaze; Osso Buco alla Milanese with Risotto Milanese; Polpettone [giant veal and ricotta meatballs] Braised in Tomato Sauce; Goan Chicken [chicken thighs braised with cilantro, mint and ginger]; Duck Ragu with Pasta; Mediterranean Squid and Shrimp Braise; Cauliflower, Potatoes & Peas Indian-Style; World’s Best Braised Green Cabbage; Red Cabbage Braised with Maple & Ginger.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                          Brilliant Joan!! Thanks for posting this. I'm going to add it as a personal note in EYB and much appreciate your recommendations.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                            I should add, those are only personal recommendations. Many more on the COTM threads that got very positive reviews that are still on my to-try list.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                            Yes I remember when All About Braising was COTM. Thank you for the recs JoanN. I look forward to trying them and combing through cotm threads for more. I know it's quickly becoming rather warm for braises but it's also nearly Father's Day and thought it was a good excuse as any to finally buy this for DH (and calling it a present made it easier to justify pressing the buy button heh).

                                                                                                                                                                            roxlet I was eyeing Bakewise at the same time as Cookwise(after I'd settled on Flour...)...so I thought I'd start with Cookwise and go from there.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                              Ah, it's all coming back to me...
                                                                                                                                                                              I think that the reason I didn't buy this book was because it seemed as if a large proportion of the recipes had sweet elements -- Plums, maple, etc. I'm wondering how prevalent these ingredients actually are.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                Still up in CT so I don't have my book with me, but I'm not a fan of sweet with my savory in general so if I liked something with a sweet element in it, it must have been pretty subtle.

                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: maplesugar

                                                                                                                                                                            Hi Maplesugar,
                                                                                                                                                                            Those all look like great picks to me. I am a huge fan of Chang's Flour ckbk.

                                                                                                                                                                          4. Fish Without a Doubt just came in - so exciting! Will go through COTM threads for recipe suggestions.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. This past weekend, I was in Pasadena and swung by Cliff's Bookstore (across the street from Settebello). I picked up Ada Boni's 'Italian Regional Cooking' used. It has a breakdown of all the regions in Italy, recipes native to each region, and info on each region and their specialties.

                                                                                                                                                                              Very good read, old school late 60's photos, and some excellent looking recipes!

                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Novelli

                                                                                                                                                                                That was the first cookbook I ever bought for myself, and it was endlessly fascinating to look at the foods of all the regions. Since my family mainly cooked southern Italian food, and I had recently traveled all over Europe, it helped me recreate some of the unusual dishes I had sampled in Italy. I still have mine, though I haven't looked through it in a while. I know at it has a yellowed Barnes and Nobel receipt that I had used as a bookmark, and it has the date I bought it and the price I paid. It was under $10, afaik.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                  Wonderful book, isn't it? I got it for $12, but in very good condition for the original 1969 print.

                                                                                                                                                                                  There were a lot of old 80's "Microwave Gourmet" and "Susan Sommer's Fit Eating" on the shelves and this one stuck out and started calling my name.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Novelli

                                                                                                                                                                                    Microwave Gourmet by Barbara Kafka is quite a good book that has earned its shelf space in my house. but I know what you mean about the 80s

                                                                                                                                                                              2. Just returned Bi-Rite Market's Eat Good Food to the library.. a good book. really. Not too many recipes (although I did copy some down, including a red quinoa and tofu salad with ginger and pickled daikon that intrigued me. It has a lot of information about ingredients,including storage and preparation tips and is organized like the sections of a grocery store (meat, fish, dairy etc). Worth a look, I think..

                                                                                                                                                                                1. Just got Tamar Adler's Everlasting Meal and having acquired a freezer full of Grassfed beef I picked up Good Meat which is going to take ages to get through.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. After making April Bloomfield's incredible lemon caper sauce, and then reading an excellent review of her book at nytimes.com, I decided to order her book from Amazon, where it is selling for a very reasonable $16.29. I know people are grossed out by the cover, but I don't mind. It's arriving today.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                      I'll be interested to hear how you like this book roxlet. The Spotted Pig is amongst my fave restaurants in NYC and Ms Bloomfield's burger and fries is the best I've ever had. It's one of those dishes where I'll never forget the first time I tried it.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. A quick stop at a yard sale today yielded an interesting assortment of books:

                                                                                                                                                                                      The Best of Sainsbury's Oriental Cooking - seems to have some wonderful, authentic looking recipes but it was the photo of the Chili Pork and Prawns that convinced me I had to have this book. (for 25¢ I might add!)

                                                                                                                                                                                      Recipes from an Italian Farmhouse by Valentina Harris - this is brand new and even had the bookmark from The Cookbook Store tucked inside. Must have been an unwanted gift I figured!

                                                                                                                                                                                      What's Cooking in Guyana, Second Edition - produced by the Carnegie School of Home Economics. This is an amazing book. I had to Google at least 10 ingredients as I flipped through the first few pages. Fascinating and mouthwatering recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Lee Bailey's Country Weekends - I saw a recipe for Black Raspberry Cake and knew I had to have this book!!

                                                                                                                                                                                      Cooking With Great Cooks - The Very Best Recipes From America's Great Cooks and Chefs - looks like the recipes came from an impressive array of folks who have taught classes at the De Gustibus Cooking School in NY (at Macy's). Seems like a great book.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                        Breadcrumbs, you obviously hit up a higher caliber of yard sale than me. I went to a number of different ones today (the whole block was having sales) and didn't see any good cookbooks (although I did score a good 9 inch round cake pan). Maybe I need to get there earlier...

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                          I think sometimes its just the luck of the draw rstuart. We went to this one around noon. An impulse stop as mr bc saw record albums piled high and that's his weakness. These folks didn't have much in the way of kitchen stuff (what usually tips me off there might be cookbooks too) but they did have a lot of books. I only saw 8 cookbooks. The 3 that I passed on (since I had one and wasn't interested in the other 2) were: The Silver Palate Cookbook, a slow cooker book and a book by a Canadian cook/chef? I can't stand...Christine Cushing.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Only bought a couple in recent times.

                                                                                                                                                                                        First up was Claudia Roden's "Food of Spain"

                                                                                                                                                                                        Second was a holiday souvenir cookbook from our trip to the western side of The Pond. We always try to find something from holidays (not always easy in non English speaking countries) . This is "Best of the Best from New England". We've two or three from this "Best" series, brought back over the years. Not always wonderful to cook from but that's not really the point in this case.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                          I was going to suggest you get the new Martha Stewart American Food, and forgot :(

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. This really is an addiction isn't it. My most recent purchases are

                                                                                                                                                                                          - Perfect Pies - Michelle Stuart
                                                                                                                                                                                          Her pie crust recipe is very good and very easy. Also love her meringue. So far -with the exception of a filling for lemon pie I thought was too sweet - everything I've made from this book has been pretty good.

                                                                                                                                                                                          - Salpicon - Priscilla Satkoff
                                                                                                                                                                                          Contemporary Mexican and probably my favorite new cookbook this Spring. They book isn't "new", just new to me. Delicious, well constructed and sophisticated Mexican.

                                                                                                                                                                                          - Fish Without a Doubt - Rick Moonen
                                                                                                                                                                                          This just arrived last week and I spent 3 hours going through it trying to figure out what to make first. Unfortunately, each recipe looked better than the preceeding one...and the COTM thread for this book was no help :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                          - The Oceanwise Cookbook - various, edited by Jane Mundy
                                                                                                                                                                                          Canadian cookbook devoted to sustainable fish and seafood. Interesting recipes - a ton for sea urchin - but nothing really screamed out "make me".

                                                                                                                                                                                          - Food & Wine Annual Cookbook 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                          My mother actually received this from American Express as a reward for something and passed it along to me. Not bad, I've made a few things from it with good success.

                                                                                                                                                                                          - The Feast Nearby - Robin Mather
                                                                                                                                                                                          Not necessarily a cookbook per se, more the story of how one woman (a food writer) evolved in a year after she lost her job and her marriage and moved to a small cottage in Michigan. I didn't know when I purchased the book (for Kindle) that there were recipes at the end of each chapter...some pretty darn good recipes in fact, particularly if one is in the SOL (sustainable, organic and local) camp.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I keep telling myself...you don't need another cookbook, you don't need another cookbook...apparently I'm not a very good listener :-(

                                                                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: DiningDiva

                                                                                                                                                                                            I really want Fish Without a Doubt but have been resisting. This thread really isn't helping!

                                                                                                                                                                                            *sits on hands*

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                                                                                              Sitting on your hands doesn't work ;). I have a lot of failures with this.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                gg I'm sure you'd hate to be called a procrastinator....I say "invest now"!!! ; - )

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I caved in and bought it after sitting on my hands for months:) Very happy that I did - I think it is a kind of book that I will consult frequently and cook from too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: DiningDiva

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I sure know how that is DD...I'm a terrible listener when it comes to this as well! I also have Fish Without A Doubt with tons of recipes flagged but I haven't had a chance to cook from it yet. Gio just mentioned liking fish at this time of year in this month's COTM nomination thread and I'm actually thinking it would be fun to pair a produce/farmer's market cookbook with a FWAD re-visit for July. I'm going to look through my farm market,/produce/veggie books later to see which ones may be COTM worthy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                    BC, I think that's a fabulous idea... and it makes a lot of sense too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Fellow addict here; I too succumbed to the siren call of the GC's bundle deal and bought four @ $9--Ian Knauer's "The Farm," which I enjoyed reading; Nathalie Dupree's "Southern Biscuits" (I almost never make biscuits and already have a recipe I love but, well, y'all know how that goes . . .); Joanna Chang's "Flour" (lots of yummy-looking stuff here); Gourmet Italian (nothing special here--I'm sure the recipes are good, but there's nothing you can't find in either the big Gourmet compendiums or any other good Italian cookbook). I also recently bought Medrich's dessert book and am looking forward to putting my low-carb diet to rest and trying something from here and from "Flour."

                                                                                                                                                                                                  13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I personally think that a lot of issues we have with flour is because most of it is milled from GMO grains. I recently bought flour milled from heritage wheat grown not far from Ottawa and made banana pancakes for breakfast this morning using it for the first time. They were delicious but most importantly, set comfortably in the belly - filling but not heavy. I am going to try a no-knead bread with it soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Is that by any chance Einkorn wheat?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: wekick

                                                                                                                                                                                                        No, not Einkorn wheat, it is "red" something. I will check the flour bag on the weekend and post if I remember where:) Are you in Ottawa or nearby? I bought at Rainbow Foods.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, this sounds right! Thank you, rstuart!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Red Fife is a Canadian heritage wheat...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                That's right and it has been grown on a farm outside of Ottawa. She, the farmer, now harvests enough grain to mil into flour and keep for seeds. This is the first year I discovered the grain - can't wait to make bread but might have to wait a while until everyone is settled into a routine and all are in one place:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Apparently it's the "in" wheat variety...(if there is such a thing?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I remember reading about red fife on the packaging for a bread Loblaws/Superstore was promoting awhile back :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Care to share that biscuit recipe of yours, chère? ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Just seeing this, bt. I'm travelling, but I'll be glad to share it once I get home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Purchase over the weekend - "Gok cooks Chinese", Gok Wan.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Really looking forward to using this book as the TV programme over the past weeks has been really enjoyable. A new move for Wan who has previously only been known (and very well known, of course) as a fashion "expert". The dishes are described as home style family recipes and there is certainly none of the gloop often associated with Cantonese restaurants (Wan's father was born in Hong Kong)

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                            To the north americas on this board, Gok's most famous show is called "how to look good naked". I was impressed by his knife and wok skills on the show. I was expecting him to fumble around the kitchen, licking chopsticks, like some other celebrities. (I'm born in Hong Kong too, and I won't eat most on offer in Chinese restuarants in the UK. They definitely are not cantonese restaurant food).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. I was fascinated by a post by JoanN about a book called Lobster at Home. It is truly a single subject book, so I'm not sure how useful it will ultimately be, but there are some very delicious-sounding lobster preparations in there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Believe it or not, roxlet, I use that book fairly often, and I'm not anywhere near lobster country. But I turn to it every time I do a lobster splurge. And i've riffed on a couple of the recipe using jumbo shrimp. It really is a wonderful book.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Has anyone checked out "At Home On The Range?" The author is Margaret Yardly Potter. Her great-granddaughter is Elizabeth Gilbert ["Eat, Pray, Love], who discovered it in a box she'd been moving around for years - and then and arranged for publication.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              It arrived in the mail here yesterday. It's wonderful. It's definitely not cutting edge [Well, maybe it is. I read calf brains and calf head recipes tonight. Mock turtle soup, anyone? And it's really easy to take apart the head and make all sorts of crispy stuff with the meat. !] - and it's not a 'traditional' cookbook. But it's cool! And it's fun. I already have a couple of pages marked - traditional stuff with some nice twists.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. "660 Curries" (a few people mentioned it on another thread and it has a lot of positive reviews on Amazon)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Jerk from Jamaica: Barbecue Caribbean Style"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Country Cooking of Greece" (Diane Kochilas -- preorder for the fall; I don't own any of her cookbooks and am hoping this one holds more appeal for me than her "Glorious Foods")

                                                                                                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oooh, I'd love to hear how Jerk From Jamaica turns out if you have an opportunity to try something emily. I love Jamaican cuisine (and Jamaica) so you've caught my interest w this book!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love Jamaican food, too, and this will be my first cookbook on the cuisine. It was listed as a favorite cookbook on "Tigers & Strawberries," which is where I first heard about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm not familiar w Tigers & Strawberries/Jamaican is this a Caribbean website emily?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I don't really follow her blog, but I've checked it out for her Chinese recipes (she's done some reviews of Dunlop recipes). She covers a bunch of different cuisines.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Love that emily, thanks so much for sharing this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. After Anna Teresa Callen died, I realized I didn't have any of her books and ordered a brand new copy of Food And Memories of Abruzzo from ABEBOOKS.com for $7.00. Money well spent. The Abruzzese are considered to be some of the finest cooks in Italy, and this is a great regional cookbook of a region that was unrepresented in my library.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Haven't bough it yet, but I've had it from the library for a few days, and I'm in love with The Tuscan Sun Cookbook, by Frances Mayes. Beautiful writing and stories to go along with beautiful pictures and recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Over the last month but mostly over the last week:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Braise: A Journey Through Internatioanal Cuisine - Daniel Boulard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Best of Vietnamese & Thai Cooking - Mai Pham
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Wine Lover's Cookbook: Great Recipes for the Perfect Glass of Wine - Sid Goldstein
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home - Jeni Britton Bauer
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking - Marcella Hazan
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rick Bayless's Mexican Kitchen: Capturing the Vibrant Flavors of a World-Class Cuisine - Rick Bayless
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Adventures in the Kitchen: 175 New Recipes from Spago, Chinois on Main, Postrio & Eureka - Wolfgang Puck
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cuisines of Mexico - Diana Kennedy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Art of Mexican Cooking - Diana Kennedy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      For Cod & Country - Barton Seaver
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Fish Without a Doubt - Rick Moonen
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Glorious French Food - Rick Peterson

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I haven't cooked with any of them yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bg90027

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hi bg, sounds like you've added some wonderful books to your shelf. FYI, we've just selected Fish Without a Doubt as the Cookbook of the Month (COTM) for July. If you're feeling like giving your new book a test drive it would be great to have you join us in our virtual kitchen!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Here's the link to the most recent info on the COTM:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs


                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I would be interested in hearing what you think of Braise after you take it for a spin. It is on my short list. As for your other choices, I have and love For Cod and Country. Just bought Fish Without a Doubt and awaiting its arrival, and love the two DK books. You are going to have a lot of fun with your new additions.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I just bought FWaD and wonder about For Cod and Country (it is on bookcloseouts for $11). Once you have a chance to look through Fish would you kindly let me know if Cod will be a wise addition. I really should stop buying books for a while and start cooking from the ones I have. But I really want a new veg book:) Took Tender and vegetable Love from the library and while Tender leaves me completely cold with no desire to buy a copy, Vegetable Love is very appealing. I'll see if Abe has one on the cheap:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Will do herby. I will tell you now that I love For Cod and Country. I have made several recipes out of it and have never had a miss.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                For Cod and Country has been popping up for the past few weeks every time I click on a thread here or when I have Googled a search. Must be an omen? Anyway I just found the following 13 May 2011 interview with Barton Seaver on NPR on-line...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                He makes such sense when he talks about seafood and sustainability. But most of all his recipes sound like food I'd like to cook...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ooooh! And he's a real cutie pie to boot! I keep looking for good prices on this book (and space on the "Fish" section of my bookshelf to fit it into). Looks like I'm going to be succumbing sooner rather than later. And making a decision about which title to put into deep storage.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It's a great book. I forgot about the fact that he is, indeed, a cutie pie! I remember noting that the first time I cracked the spine of this book. For those of you who are adding it to their shelves, I've tried these recipes so far and would recommend all of them:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wild Striped Bass with Cilantro Onion Salad and Yogurt Avocado Puree (p. 74) -I used green onions for the salad and next time I would omit the yogurt from the puree - it would be just as good without it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Broiled Pears with Orange and Honey (p. 204)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Warm Poached Salmon in Red Wine Sauce (p. 153) served with
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Lentils as prepared on page 185

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Planet BBQ arrived in today's mail and looks very interesting at a first glance. I think that last summer there was a thread adjunct to current COTM that covered various grilling books - must look it up. In the mean time, it would be great if those of you who cooked from the book would share their favourite recipes - TIA!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Here's the Grilling Books thread, Herby..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          And here's the link to All those non or pre COTM threads...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You're Welcome! Raichlen has side dish recipes to pair with the food he grills and the ones I have made have been terrific. Plus, he gives a bit of history for the recipes as well. I think you'll like this book...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Howzabout a new summer thread, what with the soltice and the appallingly hot weather here in the eastern US and Canada?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. "Wild About Greens." Lots of recipes for kale, chard, spinach, etc. Great summer book.