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What cookbooks have you bought recently, or are you lusting after? February 2014 edition! [Through February 28, 2014]

Hello all, last month's discussion was lively and crave-inducing -- and there are new books coming out every day, as well as old ones remaining to be found. I do believe Asian Dumplings (Cookbook of the Month) is in my future, for example, despite being spoiled for choice in the restaurants in NYC. How about you?

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  1. My cookbook purchase is a Weight Watchers one, that I hope will inspire me to make more WW-friendly meals. It is the Under 20 book, which is all about quick meals for weeknights. I can get behind that!

    1. I picked up a copy of Isa Does It at the library yesterday. We'll see how it goes. I'm eager to add a few really good vegan recipes to dinner rotation around here. I've managed to sneak in an extra vegetarian meal each week for the past month or two without hearing any complaints. Can I sneak in a few more vegan ones as well? Will let you know. No cashew cheese for me - that much I promise.

      8 Replies
      1. re: LulusMom

        I just got a copy of this and am making her Chana saag for dinner tonight! I am not vegan but am all for eating that way much of the time. Not sure if I am game to try cashew cheese; perhaps if it is not called "cheese" I would be on board :-)

        Also just picked up "Angelica Kitchen" and plan to make the angelica cornbread (which I adored the time I had it at the restaurant). Hope it comes out ok.

        1. re: poptart

          Exactly! Don't call it cheese and maybe people will actually like it. I look forward to hearing how the Chana saag turns out. I've always wanted to go to Angelica but that is a hard sell when one doesn't make it to NYC often and has a meat lover along.

          1. re: LulusMom

            The Chana saag was quite good, very easy to make as well. Plenty of leftovers too.
            I've only been to Angelica a couple of times but my favorite thing there is their corn bread and spreads (so far have tried the carrot butter and the tahini spread). I understand it being a hard sell, I've only been there solo myself :-).

        2. re: LulusMom

          I recently purchased Isa Does It(January), made the Mango Fried Rice and it was delicious. My mom made the Vegetable Soup(with alphabet pasta) and also very good. I have always wanted to go to Angelica Kitchen when I have visited Manhattan and now that my vegan daughter has moved to NYC I may get my chance. She will definitely want to go and try it out.

          1. re: nadiam1000

            I'm hoping that tomorrow I get a chance to sit down with the book and go through it to see what appeals. I've been waiting for it for a while, and suddenly find myself with no free time (sob!). Husband should be back in town tomorrow and there is no chance of a snow day.

          2. re: LulusMom

            OK, I've been debating whether or not to put this recipe review online, because it is for a vegan recipe and ... well, I used chicken. I honestly meant to make a vegan meal. But the first day I was able to get out of the house after the massive snowstorm I went to a local grocery store and asked the stock guy "Do you have seitan?" Let's just say this got quite a reaction. I then had to explain to him that it was a meat substitute, but he kept looking at me suspiciously. Long story short they don't carry it, and since the recipe was for something basically like orange chicken but with seitan "chickeny cutlets" I figured I'd just go with the chicken. My husband was certainly happier. Lulu wasn't thrilled with having orange in her savory. I get that - first time and all (and it got finished as part of a packed lunch without a word said against it). Basically the good news is that this recipe works and is tasty. I would have preferred it to be spicier but that is easy enough to fix. Sorry I don't have the exact name of the dish or page number (took the book back to the library), but I did enjoy it, and made note of maybe 12 other recipes I'd like to try. If this comes out in paper I may pick up a copy.

            1. re: LulusMom

              The reaction to your seitan question ... I can only imagine. Hilarious!

              1. re: stockholm28

                The poor young guy. We're in the south here ... I can only begin to imagine what he thought I was saying to him.

          3. I am lusting after a cookbook that does not exist. Lately the PBS stations in the Boston area have been running episodes of A Chef's Life at least once a day. Vivian Howard's new twists on preparing traditional ingredients from the American South look triffic. A few recipes appear on the show's website but I *hope* there will soon be a cookbook. On today's show, she made a sort of chutney/relish from the local Scuppernong/Muscadine grapes, using it along with goat cheese, bacon, and onion to top pizza. A different version of grape conserve was used with panna cotta and crisped cornbread crumbs. I don't buy cookbooks often, nor do I tend to follow recipes faithfully, but I think I'd do both if Ms. Howard writes one.

            2 Replies
            1. re: greygarious

              Perhaps a road trip is in order so you can observe first hand?
              Seriously though, if you get down here and want to dine at the Chef and The Farmer I am happy to join you!

              http://chefandthefarmer.com/

              1. re: greygarious

                I have good news for you! I attended a talk by Vivian Howard tonight. She is working on a cookbook and is at the beginning stages. No publisher at this point but I'm sure that will change!

              2. Mastering fermentation : recipes for making and cooking with fermented foods
                by Karlin, Mary
                was on hold and is due at my library in a few days

                Flavours of Aleppo : celebrating Syrian cuisine / (2013)
                by Kadé-Badra, Dalal.
                I am also on a list for this cookbook.
                The next town to where I live(Hollywood) has a large Sephardic Jewish population-most come from Syria or Turkey.

                2 Replies
                1. re: jpr54_1

                  Hollywood CA or Hollywood FL? If it's FL please tell me all your fav spots. I love Jewish Syrian food. If your interested Aromas of Aleppo by Poopa Dweck is amazing and beautiful I cook from it all the time.

                  1. re: Siegal

                    Hollywood, FLORIDA

                2. I saw the Tartine Book 3 at the bookstore recently and am seriously jonesing for it. Porridge breads and other goodies I'd love to try (but probably shouldn't because I love bread a little too much).

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: poptart

                    Amazon is selling the Tartine 1? Kindle e-book $ 3.99
                    Here's the link: (mostly dessert recipes, but a good price at $3.99 for the Kindle e-book edition)

                    Tartine (Kindle Edition) by Elisabeth Prueitt, Chad Robertson

                    http://www.amazon.com/Tartine-Elisabe...

                    1. re: Antilope

                      A Girl and Her Pig and Mario's Italian Grill are also insanely cheap right now on Kindle. Both are great books, so snap them up!

                  2. I haven't bought a cookbook in many years but I dug out some old ones, mostly Bobby Flay grill cookbooks and a Jamie Oliver cookbook and found that even if I don't want to hassle with one, they still give lots of inspiration when I'm in a rut and can't figure out what I want to eat. With that said, I bought Get Saucy based on a recommendation on here and though I haven't tried any of the recipes yet (it came yesterday), they look wonderful.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: toddrhodes

                      Jamie Oliver has given us so many great meals.

                    2. I'm salivating over Suzanne Goin's A.O.C. book because her book Sunday Suppers at Lucques was so phenomenal. It's going to have to wait for a while, though.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: amoule

                        I believe JoanN really likes both.

                        1. re: buttertart

                          Just seeing this now. A couple of months ago I had a small dinner party with all of the dishes from AOC. I made the Chopped Salad Dijonnaise (really, really good; and with the addition of chopped, roasted chicken or steak could easily be a meal unto itself); Grilled Orata with Cauliflower, Fregola, and Persimmon-Pomegranate Salsa (lots of components and time-consuming to make, but my guests were gaga over this); and Roasted Pear Crisp with Cranberries and Yogurt Sherbet (I’d make the sherbet again in a heartbeat. Not the crisp. Gotta be easier recipes out there that would pack the same punch with considerably less effort. But the two were an excellent pairing).

                        2. re: amoule

                          I got AOC recently. I've not yet cooked from it. It has been so cold and miserable we have just wanted comfort food.

                        3. More a travelogue than a cookbook, I just bought Coquilles, Calva, and Crème: Exploring France's Culinary Heritage: A Love Affair with Real French Food. I will let you know what I think when it arrives.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: dkennedy

                            Sounds very fun. Can't wait to hear your thoughts.

                          2. Rose's Heavenly Cakes by Rose Levy Beranbaum. It's on kindle for 2.99 right now. I already have her Cake Bible and Pie Bible.

                            The Indian Slow Cooker cookbook by Anupy Singla. Also on kindle for 2.99. I've had the print version for a couple years now and love her aloo gobi recipe. I think I like the cookbook mostly because I use her technique to convert my favorite recipes for the slow cooker.

                            12 Replies
                            1. re: rasputina

                              The chocolate Valentine heart in Heavenly Cakes is divine.

                              1. re: rasputina

                                Thanks for putting Slow Cooker on my radar. Just bought it for $2.99 and also Made in Marseille and Cooking the Roman Way for 99 cents each.

                                1. re: rasputina

                                  I got Rose's Heavenly Cakes too. I think I will have to make the chocolate valentine heart.

                                  1. re: rasputina

                                    Rose's book (kindle version) is on sale today for $2.57.

                                    http://www.amazon.com/Roses-Heavenly-...

                                    1. re: Hank Hanover

                                      Hank, I would say I am mad at you, but for the price, and with all the great reviews, and no shelf space used, I will say thank you instead! Thank you!

                                      1. re: Hank Hanover

                                        Thank you, Hank! Just bought it with one click :)

                                        1. re: Hank Hanover

                                          I don't bake all that much, but how can one pass up an RLB book for $2.57? Bless you, Hank.

                                          1. re: JoanN

                                            And it's GREAT.

                                            1. re: buttertart

                                              Have any of you ever made the Cradle Cake? It caught my eye.

                                          2. re: Hank Hanover

                                            I think it is on sale all this month.

                                            1. re: Hank Hanover

                                              ...and today it's down to $2.51!

                                            2. re: rasputina

                                              Thanks. I also succumbed and bought this book. Up until now, I've never bought a Kindle cookbook, but I just could not resist the bargain price.

                                            3. I may be the last CH who cooks but I just ordered Ottolenghi The Cookbook. I was looking for a recipe for seared duck breast that wasn't so sweet and came across their recipe with blood oranges and star anise. Looked at other recipes and pulled the trigger.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                It's still on my wishlist. May take me a few more months

                                                1. re: Siegal

                                                  Me too!

                                                2. re: c oliver

                                                  I bought it in London when it was first out. I love all 3 of their books.

                                                3. I have a few cookbooks out from the library for perusal, including the Cook's Illustrated Baking book, which both buttertart and roxlet have praised, the Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook, and the Hakka Cookbook, which I put a hold on when it was in the running for COTM.

                                                  T CI book does have a number of appealing recipes, and it's true that they sometimes come up with neat twists or refinements of technique, but it also reminds my why they drive me batty: their insistence that they're reinventing the wheel and designing a better model; even when they just confirm that a traditional ingredient or technique, etc. (or someone else's innovation) gives the best result, they act as if it's their discovery. Cf., for example, snickerdoodles, quick cream biscuit, and gingerbread recipes. /rant

                                                  Liddabit Sweets is written with a cutesy tone that bugs a bit, but the technical info seems very solid, and though I've only skimmed, there are definitely some appealing candies. Fig and ricotta caramels, and brown sugar-coffee caramels jumped right out at me.

                                                  Haven't had a chance to look at Hakka yet.

                                                  9 Replies
                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                    Please report back on Hakka. Especially if you try one of the recipes ! So interested in this book but would like to hear from somebody who has actually cooked from it.

                                                    1. re: Westminstress

                                                      I've made one thing from the Hakka cookbook so far - the Braised Chicken Wings in Black Bean sauce. Our basic take was that the flavor was wonderful, but that it didn't make that much sense to use wings with all their skin since the skin got flabby during the braising. But we'd do it again in a heartbeat with skinless (with or without bone) thighs (or breast I suppose, for those who prefer that). It was easy peasy to make too. The one change I might make is to use broth instead of water to give the sauce a little more depth (or maybe add some chinese wine/dry sherry/gin). Basically a sauce of garlic, water, soy sauce, ground bean sauce (or hoisin), black pepper, sugar and cilantro to garnish.

                                                      1. re: LulusMom

                                                        Thanks for the report!

                                                    2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                      Caitlin, I'd love to hear what you think of the Hakka Cookbook. I have a load of recipes listed that I want to try. I have made just one so far, the Stir-Fried Cumin Beef on page 183 only I used chicken BLSL thighs variation. It was wonderful.. A few new cookbooks arrived shortly after that and I went on to something else.

                                                      If I didn't think March would be too soon after the Dumpling and Tofu month I'd nominate Hakka for COTM.

                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                        Well, Hakka went back without my having tried anything from it. Should it prevail as a future COTM, I'll take it out again. Liddabit Sweets also went back without being used (homemade candy's not on the normal menu, I get into for the holidays/occasions), but I did take advantage of a low-price/free shipping deal from TGC to buy a copy. Some Amazon reviews complain of inaccuracies, but I found a list of errata on Liddabit's website that I'll print out.

                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                          That is such a nice aspect of the internet, the ability to publish corrections without having to re-print the book.

                                                          Cookbooks at this point in history ought to have a site ready to go at the time of publishing, and include the URL in the book to let readers know where to look for corrections (and/or where to submit putative errors).

                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                            Hakka is a fascinating book to read, however.

                                                            1. re: buttertart

                                                              Unfortunately, I jut didn't have time to sit with it this month, while I had it out. I'll definitely try to get back to it at some point.

                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                I'm sure you will enjoy it.

                                                        2. Desperately want my own copy of ottolenghi's "Jerusalem." Checked it out of the library a few months ago and was OBSESSED.

                                                          1. I have from the library The Family Dinner by Laurie David. Has anyone cooked from this book? I took it out on a whim as I am still trying to find a good source for toddler-friendly, weeknight meals. (Keepers did not, in the end, produce many keepers for us. So the search continues....)

                                                            10 Replies
                                                            1. re: Westminstress

                                                              Shame about Keepers. I sort of had my eye on that. Well, just saved some money and shelf space I guess.

                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                Bummer about Keepers. :( Would you mind sharing which recipes you tried and which were Keepers and which were not? Apologies if you have listed this elsewhere...I've been a bit out of the loop.

                                                                I'd be interested to see what you think of the Family Dinner. I can't find the Table of Contents on Amazon for some reason, which makes it hard to wrap my head around what, exactly, this book is. But, as you can imagine, I'm interested.

                                                                Right away I disagree with their 10 Simple Steps, insisting everyone try everything. That sort of is opposite Ellyn Satter's advice for little kids, which is to just put everything out (including one safe,"sure fire" food) and let the kids serves themselves. But, there's probably plenty of stuff in the book that I would find helpful.

                                                                ~TDQ

                                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                  Not to be a lazybones, but if you go to EYB I posted recipe notes and a headnote. http://www.eatyourbooks.com/library/1...

                                                                  I actually found the recipes in the book appealing overall, and they were easy to execute. But, for the most part, my family's reaction to the food was, "eh." Except for the pasta with broccoli rabe -- that one everybody loved -- and I'm kicking myself a bit because I had intended to copy the recipe before I returned the book to the library, but I totally forgot.

                                                                  The Family Dinner -- I am not impressed with it so far. About half the book is preaching about why family dinner is important -- since we already have family dinners this part of the book is just a waste of space for me. Then there are celebrity testimonials ... again I am not so into this. Then there is the fact that when the author went back to work, in order to make her family dinner happen she hired a cook!!!!! That makes me distrust the recipes. But I do have it around and if I try some of the recipes I will report back.

                                                                  I have to say that though I have much respect for Ellyn Satter, I just can't bring myself to adopt her methods wholesale. If I put bread on the table every night my son would eat nothing but bread. If I put dessert on the table with the main meal he would eat his dessert and nothing else. And we sometimes coax him into eating some vegetables (especially ones that he is more inclined to eat). I just think that one of the best ways to learn to like veggies is to get some practice eating them, and if left to himself my son would literally never touch them -- so how does he get used to the taste if he never tries? I know Ellyn Satter says he would come around on his own eventually but I literally think this would take years. And I know I should be OK with that according to ES, but I'm not.

                                                                  And also, in our house, you have to eat some dinner in order to get dessert. You don't have to try everything or clear your plate, but you have to make a good effort at eating something. If my son could automatically have dessert every night, most of the time he would never eat anything for dinner but would just wait for dessert. Dessert is usually fruit or a pouch -- something that's healthy anyway -- and I don't care if it makes up a large chunk of his calories for the night -- but he has to eat some dinner first.

                                                                  1. re: Westminstress

                                                                    If you have an answer to the how to get a toddler to eat veg problem, I'm sure you can make millions.

                                                                    I can't make my little girl eat meat either. She only eats carbs and puddings.

                                                                    1. re: lilham

                                                                      have you tried the "no thank you portion"?
                                                                      it worked with my son-
                                                                      a small portion to be eaten and then child can say no thank you.

                                                                      1. re: lilham

                                                                        We have a 2 bites of everything rule. If she doesn't like something after 2 bites, that is fine - she's done her best. I've read that some foods take 10-12 tries to get used to, so that would meal 5-6 meals with that particular vegetable. For Lulu it usually isn't vegetables that cause an issue. But when I've had some of her friends over for lunch, having something to dip vegetables into seems to work some sort of magic.

                                                                        1. re: lilham

                                                                          I refused to eat meat as a child, which drove my mother to distraction; everyone was convinced that I would die of protein malnutrition (it was a different time). I still am not crazy about meat, but I realize that it was the texture that I didn't like.. all of the chewing!

                                                                          1. re: rstuart

                                                                            Me too - the texture of meat still bothers me. I love duck, but that is probably the closest to a meaty texture that I can deal with.

                                                                        2. re: Westminstress

                                                                          You know, it's all just a balancing act, and I recognize that. For example, my son would eat a lot more dinner if I catered to his tastes every night, but I don't do that. I happen to prefer to eat lots of vegetable-centric meals, and I also prefer to eat seasonally which means lots of root veggies in the winter, and I understand that these are more challenging foods for a toddler and I don't expect him to eat everything (or even lots of things) that I serve. On the other hand, since I do regularly serve foods that I know my son doesn't like, I like to balance that by also offering foods he loves and prefers. I also have a need to streamline the weeknight dinner routine. That is why I am on the lookout for a good "family" cookbook. Hoping to expand the repertoire of quick weeknight meals that my son likes.

                                                                          1. re: Westminstress

                                                                            Well, as with all things parenting (and in life, I suppose), you have to roll with what works for you. The Ellyn Satter method does seem to work for us, though bread isn't the only "safe" or "sure thing" (ie., that we know he will like and eat) food we have the option to put at the table. Thankfully, my toddler has a number of "safe" foods -- bread, corn, peas, ham, pickles, crackers, most fruits, bacon, yogurt... I can pretty much work one of these foods into our meal plan and know he'll eat at least something. I do notice sometimes he eats a lot of one thing or another and other times he eats very little of that very same thing. Or, that he'll go on an all-carb kick or an all protein kick or whatever.

                                                                            Deep in his heart, my husband hasn't totally bought into the E.S. thing (even though we've talked about it and he intellectually agrees) and will sometimes forget himself and try to insist and/or coax my child into taking a bite of something. I notice the immediate power struggle that ensues and later try to remind my husband to stop being a food pusher and point out how ineffective his efforts were. It just results in disruption to the meal and I think my child ends up trying less, not more.

                                                                            We don't have a lot of dessert at our house, but, yes, it's something that's promise after the meal is over.

                                                                            P.S. the link to EYB is perfect. I almost asked if you'd put it in EYB. I wish I'd checked there first, actually, so I wouldn't have to pester you. :)

                                                                            ~TDQ

                                                                    2. I recently got the Boulud cookbook and Momofuku. I'm making a dessert from the Boulud one for Valentines :)

                                                                      1. 1. Ballaboosta (maybe)
                                                                        2. Bi Rite
                                                                        3. Exotic Kitchen
                                                                        4. Mad Cravings

                                                                        35 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Westy

                                                                          More info about Exotic Kitchen please. I tired to Google it but only came up with Exotic Kitchens of Peru.

                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                            Should have been "Exotic Table." Apologies:
                                                                            http://www.amazon.com/Exotic-Table-Fl...

                                                                            1. re: Westy

                                                                              Thank you

                                                                              1. re: Westy

                                                                                this book looks interesting. Anyone have any comments on it?

                                                                            2. re: Westy

                                                                              I'm kind of interested in Ballaboosta too. It is sitting in my wish list on amazon and I'm trying hard to ignore it.

                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                Yeah. I have the snese it won't have anything I don't already have.

                                                                                Ideally, my local library will have ti and I can get a better sense of whether or not I really want it.

                                                                                1. re: Westy

                                                                                  If you find it at the library and give it a look I'd love to know what you think.

                                                                                  I ended up with 12 things I'd really like to make from Isa Does It, which is actually pretty good considering I automatically said no to anything with fake cheese or cream. Now the test will be how those things turn out, I guess.

                                                                                  1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                    Please report back when you do!
                                                                                    :-)

                                                                                    1. re: poptart

                                                                                      Definitely will.

                                                                                2. re: LulusMom

                                                                                  I have balaboosta. I have a lot of middle eastern cookbooks and was hesitant to buy it bc I thought there would be a lot of overlap but many of her recipes are unique. My only caution is the salt - whatever you do do not add the salt amount she recommends, otherwise the recipes are great

                                                                                  1. re: Siegal

                                                                                    Too much or too little in her recipes?

                                                                                    1. re: Westy

                                                                                      Way too much. But seasoning is good just the salt (and I love salt)- maybe she uses some giant grained salt when she measured it. But as long as you salt to taste it should be ok

                                                                                    2. re: Siegal

                                                                                      Siegal, you're not being helpful here (kidding). I"m trying very hard not to buy this. I still have so many cookbooks I have only just skimmed. But I do love middle eastern food with a vengeance.

                                                                                      1. re: Siegal

                                                                                        Siegal, COTM material, ya think?

                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                          I think I nominated for February! no one joined me...sigh. I think it would appeal to everyone because although it has a middle eastern slant it has an eclectic mix of recipes.

                                                                                          First off the middle eastern recipes it does have - alot are sourced from her Yemenite heritage - Not sure if you guys had Yemeni food but huevos haminados (sorry - not sure the Yemenite name), schug, jachnun, hamin - yemenite calf leg soup - these are all delicacies in Israel. My husband often tells me that all Israeli's know the best food in Israel is made by 90 yr old Yemeni grandmothers (and they would all proceed to their house after school). That being said - I can't find a Yemenite cookbook in English in this country (if only my Hebrew was better!) so I was glad to find this book.

                                                                                          She also has recipes that are not middle eastern - cheesecakes, gnocchi, root veggie chips, adobo steak, scallops, etc...

                                                                                          But I think the best thing about the book is the set up - its not just appetizers, fish, meat, dessert. Its set up more by theme/mood which I LOVE. I can flip to the kiddie section when I want to make my daughter something, or the romantic section for a night without the kids, the diet section for the days you want something light, the "hurry" section, etc....I have never seen a book set up like this and I like it.

                                                                                          1. re: Siegal

                                                                                            Well Siegal, I had absolutely no interest in buying Balaboosta until you came along. Then I started reading up on it on Amazon and on her blog (delightful, btw) and now I can't stop thinking about it. Grrrr. You'll have to persuade everyone to make it a COTM (this time I'll second your nomination) so I will be forced to buy it. Can you enlighten all of us what is so magical about the Kit Kat recipe?

                                                                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                              You know I have no made it although my husband after seeing the picture requested it a few weeks ago. It is good quality chocolate, butter and cream poured over crushed cornflakes mixed with nutella and then cut up into little bars. How bad can it be, right?

                                                                                              1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                OK, this one is going on my list. Thanks.

                                                                                            2. re: Siegal

                                                                                              I've requested Balaboosta from the library, though I won't see it for a while; I'm third in line and they've only one copy. That said, I had seen a recipe from the book for Turkish coffee brownies on Serious Eats and loved the idea. I did not end up using the recipe, but added the flavorings (espresso powder and a tsp. ground cardamom) to another basic brownie. Absolutely delicious, and very popular, garnering many compliments.

                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                I made the brownies! they were soft and cake-like - they were awesome - y'know assuming you like cardamom. However, I whipped out my Turkish Coffee and it didn't call for any! lol. I guess she just meant with the cardamom its reminiscent of Turkish coffee

                                                                                                1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                  I could tell they'd be cakey, which is why I didn't use the recipe - I wanted fudgy! The recipe as posted on Serious Eats calls for ground espresso beans or instant espresso (I used about 2 tsp. instant espresso, more than it calls for): http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

                                                                                                  Is the coffee really missing in the book?

                                                                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                    its not missing but you brew turkish coffee a special way and the beans used are usually very strong with certain spices ground in. Its just a bit different - not that it was missing. I just whipped out my bag of turkish coffee and was ready to brew some (I have way too much from my last haul from middle eastern relatives) when it called for espresso powder.

                                                                                                    1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                      Ah, gotcha, I thought you meant the coffee was missing. Yes, it's obviously meant to be evocative of Turkish coffee in a simpler way.

                                                                                                2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                  I also requested it from the library but I am 14th on the list.

                                                                                                  1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                    My library doesn't have it.

                                                                                                  2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                    For those without the book (yet!!!) I thought I'd mention that it's indexed in EYB and a number of recipes seem to be online w links from EYB.

                                                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                      Thanks for bringing that to my attention, BC. I see the boureka recipe is online, and it is an interesting variation. I make bourekas (and pastelikos) regularly. They are wonderful, handheld treats and I encourage all of you to check these out.

                                                                                                      1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                        There are so many bureka variations it's amazing. I did make the one in the book in the kiddie section - first time I baked a giant one in that shape. I liked it

                                                                                                  3. re: Siegal

                                                                                                    I've looked at Balaboosta for a while now and resisted buying until Siegal came along. My library has 11 copies and there are 74 holds. At the same time I had some $$ left over from Amozon gift certificate... Now the book is on its way in the company of Japanese Favourites by Australian Women's Weekly. Please nominate again for March and I'll be right behind it :)

                                                                                                    1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                      "Now the book is on its way" to me.
                                                                                                      "Please nominate again for March and I'll be right behind it :)"

                                                                                                      (Thanks Herby. LOL)

                                                                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                                                                        You are welcome, darling :) The book is literally on its way - it was shipped today!

                                                                                                  4. re: Siegal

                                                                                                    So my copy of Balaboosta finally came in to the library and I have it my greedy little hands right now. It seems wonderful and I can't remember why or where, but I remember as a follow up to this conversation, somewhere on Chow they were dissing this book for errors or something else. Does anyone recall where that conversation was mentioned? I want all the facts before I decide if I should buy it. Based on the visual of the recipes, it looks amazing.

                                                                                                    1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                      dkennedy, that was in the March COTM nomination thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9631...

                                                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                        Thank you Caitlin. I just reread it.

                                                                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                          Despite the bad reviews, I am very intrigued with this book. I think I will review it on the Cookbook A Week Thread. I already earmarked three recipes to make this week: an eggplant tahini dish, steak with adobo sauce, and oxtail soup. Have 3 steaks defrosting in the fridge and bought oxtails (bison and angus) today at the Farmer's market. The adobo would have been dinner tonight except my daughter's science fair project ran long. Still cleaning up the kitchen!

                                                                                                3. I just picked up from the library Mastering Fermentation by Mary Karlin.

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                                    Please share your thoughts once you've had a good look through the book!

                                                                                                  2. Not to start a book war, but we are so over recipe books. Here in the kitchen of TheDIYCook, we prefer books that teach how-to techniques rather than recipes for our fans. If it's recipes you seek, an internet search yields more recipes than anyone could afford to purchase in book form. If you were to own just 3 "Cooking" books, I nominate the following:
                                                                                                    1. The Professional Chef by The Culinary Institute of America.
                                                                                                    2. Ruhlman's 20- Michael Ruhlman
                                                                                                    3. The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day-Jeff Hertzberg & Zoë François

                                                                                                    Supplement your library with books that teach techniques for the style and type of food you enjoy most. BTW...they all have recipes in them. Let's face it, once you make a recipe the first time, no doubt you will change it to make it your own the next time!

                                                                                                     
                                                                                                    19 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                      I could not disagree with TheDIYcook more. While I enjoy reading through books like Ruhlman's 20 and The Professional Chef to remind myself about techniques, I do not find them inspirational to cook out of whatsoever.

                                                                                                      I buy and use my cookbooks to read cover to cover, and then keep them for inspiration. It is true that I often tweak recipes in my books, but many of them are spot on as written and it is those recipes I go back to again and again.

                                                                                                      Re your nominations for techniques, I also disagree re your recommendations. Zuni has to be on that list.

                                                                                                      On an unrelated subject, I just bought two copies of SHARE. I thought its message was so beautiful, and the recipes and photos so inviting, so I bought a second copy for my 13 year old daughter. This will be her very first grown up cookbook and I think it is one she will keep her whole life. When my copy arrives, I plan on starting a Share thread.

                                                                                                      http://www.amazon.com/Share-Cookbook-...

                                                                                                      1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                        I'm enthralled with Share, DK. It really sounds exciting, and I like the whole premise. It's certainly worth investigating.

                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                          That was my reaction as well. I will report in full when my copy arrives.

                                                                                                        2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                          dkennedy, your story about buying this book for your daughter as a cookbook and keepsake sold me on this book! It's on order and I'm looking forward to it.

                                                                                                          I haven't bought a single other cookbook this year and have missed chowhound and homecooking. I started grad school and it has me busier that I thought possible. I'll check back as much as possible and be back full force someday.

                                                                                                          1. re: pagesinthesun

                                                                                                            I think you will enjoy it. It captivated me the moment I saw the cover.

                                                                                                          2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                            SHARE -- what a BEAUTIFUL book! I just ordered two -- one to keep, one to give as a gift.

                                                                                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                              I looked at Share and will definitely buy for the cause alone - it looks like a wonderful book to have. Thank you, DK, for bringing it to my attention!

                                                                                                              1. re: herby

                                                                                                                I really loved the idea behind it.

                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                  Did you make anything out of it yet?

                                                                                                              2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                Oh wow, neat book. I can't wait to read your results in the thread. I'm being very judicious in my cookbook buying lately, so I will wait awhile on this one, though I love the idea of it!

                                                                                                                ~TDQ

                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                  I recently gave a copy of Share to a non-cooking friend of mine as a new home gift. I knew she'd appreciate the stories, background and photos, if not the recipes. This book has actually motivated her to venture into her kitchen and cook -- she phoned the other day to tell me she was making corn chowder for the first time ever. Okay, okay -- she was using canned corn, but still, the book is clearly inspirational.

                                                                                                                2. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                                  The three cookbooks you referenced will never be on my cookbook shelves because I'm not interested in those subjects at all now. I've been cooking since I was a little girl but have no intention of cooking like a professional chef. I've baked countless loaves of bread, and already have dozens of recipes for charcuterie should I want to make something, which I have in the past.

                                                                                                                  I began collecting cookbooks when I got married. Cookbooks that focused on subjects I was interested in at the time and that grew to include a wide variety of regional, ethnic, compendia, and single subject books . Any cookbook written by a cook or chef with experience and expertise explains technique, cooking methods, equipment, ingredients, etc. thoroughly I have found.

                                                                                                                  Cookbooks provide an opportunity to delve into the cuisine of a region of the world /area/country to which one would not be able to travel. The stories, the photographs, the esoteric minutiae incorporated within the pages of a cookbook are a joy to read. Then there's the food. Bread, sausage, and knives are only a tiny part of that experience.

                                                                                                                  1. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                                    Some us buy cookbooks instead of movies, vacation getaways or music because they offer high entertainment value. There's something warm and comforting about curling up on the sofa with a cuppa tea and a good book.

                                                                                                                    I can think of worse things to do some vicarious spending on.

                                                                                                                    1. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                                      I think there's little worry that you'll start a book war here DIY.

                                                                                                                      Folks who post on this monthly thread tend to be cookbook lovers and collecters who may or may not already own/need or have an interest in the books you suggest.

                                                                                                                      On occasion folks will post on the Home Cooking board looking for recommendations for a cookbook for a new cook or a cook looking to improve certain skills. It strikes me that your post is really more like a reponse to that type of question.

                                                                                                                      1. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                                        I have the Ruhlman and find it tedious.

                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                          Me too.

                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                            Me three.

                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                              Me four! ... although instead of owning it I borrowed it from the library.

                                                                                                                            2. re: TheDIYcook

                                                                                                                              Your post reads like advertising.

                                                                                                                            3. already have this- RIPE- by Nigel Slater,I saw it on sale at William Sonoma today, however,worth looking through whether or not you want it as another cookbook,it really is a work of art (the pictures are sensational)

                                                                                                                              1. I started reading the Marcy Goldman "When Bakers Cook" and really, really like it. I love that she was (also) inspired by the Time-Life Foods of the World series, Julia, and James :)

                                                                                                                                1. I really, really want to buy the Baking Illustrated cookbook. As a huge Cooks Illustrated fan in general (tv show, magazine, and books), it has been calling my name for years. While I can check it out from the library, there is nothing like marking pages and taking notes in my own books!

                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                  1. re: ollieollie

                                                                                                                                    You won't regret it.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                      I agree, though the lemon bars I made were the notable failure among all the successes I've had from that book.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                        Isn't Baking Illustrated a different (older) book than the newish CI Baking book? Ah, yes, just looked it up on Amazon. Baking Illustrated was published in 2004.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                          Oh, yes! I read Baking Illustrated, but thought The Baking Book, which was where the lemon bar recipe that I didn't think was very good came from.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                            I can't figure out how much they repeat recipes so I have no idea whether I should get the new baking book. I have "The Best Recipe" (love the devil's food cake recipe) and "The Dessert Bible".

                                                                                                                                        2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                          The lemon bars -- How were they bad? The recipe looks pretty standard.

                                                                                                                                    2. So the whole Piglet contest usually gets me lusting, and I thought it was supposed to start in February but nothing seems to be going on yet. Anyone know for sure when it starts?

                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                        Starts on 2/12:
                                                                                                                                        http://food52.com/blog/9532-update-th...

                                                                                                                                        1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                          Thank you so much Emily. I've been checking it daily and thinking I must be imagining things.

                                                                                                                                      2. I never thought I would want one but after watching Gordon Ramsey's Ultimate cooking show I would buy a book by him. I like his basic approach and use of fresh, local foods. I did not like him at all when he did the Kitchen nightmare show, it gave me nightmares.

                                                                                                                                        1. I seem to be ultra-susceptible this month. I have bought quite a few books. Most were bargains, none were necessary.

                                                                                                                                          Here's the latest:
                                                                                                                                          A Homemade Life (Kindle version, very inexpensive)
                                                                                                                                          A Girl in the Kitchen
                                                                                                                                          Share (2 copies, 1 for me, 1 for my 13 year old)
                                                                                                                                          Made in Marseille (Kindle)
                                                                                                                                          Cooking the Roman Way (Kindle)
                                                                                                                                          Indian Slow Cooker (Kindle)
                                                                                                                                          Coquilles, Caiva, and Creme

                                                                                                                                          Before that:
                                                                                                                                          Turkey
                                                                                                                                          The Farm
                                                                                                                                          Pickles, PIgs and Whiskey
                                                                                                                                          Lost Recipes

                                                                                                                                          Yikes!!! I better stop buying and start reading!

                                                                                                                                          ETA: Most of these are still en route so I can really judge which ones will be treasures at this point. A Homemade Life is on Kindle so I already started it. I am on recipe #4 which is pretty far in because every recipe is preceded by a long story (which I am loving because she is a wonderful writer) and I think everyone should buy this book while it is still a bargain!!!!! Future COTM if we do.

                                                                                                                                          30 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                            OK, just bought A Homemade Life since you do not think we should live without it :) Not only a bargain at $2 but no shelf space. I bought Cooking the Roman Way some time ago and recently started reading it - quite interesting so far.

                                                                                                                                            I love Turkey and made many good things out of it. Need to get back to it soon.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                              I have made the Blueberry-Raspberry Pound Cake from this book, it is a great recipe, especially liked the blackberry variation.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Ruthie789

                                                                                                                                                Oh, that one sounded so good. So did the banana bread with chocolate and ginger. I think it is more about how she describes things than anything else. Really, I will be satisfied with this book even if it turns out I don't like the recipes. I really enjoy her voice.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                  Agree, food is really a celebration of daily life, past and present, that is the message I feel she relays in her book.

                                                                                                                                            2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                              And since my last report (earlier today) 2 more books:

                                                                                                                                              The Gefilte Variations
                                                                                                                                              Chef Interrupted

                                                                                                                                              Both mentioned in America's 150 Best Recipes.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                Uh-oh. Seems I am well on my way to binge status. Here are three more:

                                                                                                                                                Applehood and Motherpie
                                                                                                                                                Simply Simpatico
                                                                                                                                                Virginia Hospitality

                                                                                                                                                All three are Junior League Books.

                                                                                                                                                These three might be of interest to some of you. They fell into my cart after reading an Amazon review that listed them (along with two others) as being on some official list as being representative of the "best of the best." Now, I am not sure if that meant cookbooks or cookbooks of their kind. Regardless, I felt it was my responsibility to go look each one up individually and of course each one had stellar reviews. So, on my shelf they went. Copies of each were available for a penny each, plus shipping.

                                                                                                                                                None of them are indexed on EYB, and I already own the fourth, Northwest Bounty, which I love. The fifth title, Florida something or other, didn't interest me so I didn't get that one. Note that NW Bounty is not a Junior League book.

                                                                                                                                                I am hopeful that all three will be worthy additions. Will report back with my official when they arrive.

                                                                                                                                                In other news, I have almost finished A Homemade Life, and I am completely smitten with it. Buy it while it is $1.99 on Kindle. In fact, I think I have a bit of a crush on the author. She says so many things that I agree with or have said or done myself, I feel as if we would be good friends if we ever met. That is, if she didn't mind that I was a good 15 years her senior. Plus, she is incredibly upbeat and appears to be a very good person.

                                                                                                                                                I am also really enjoying reading through Share and I feel good about where my money went for that one, so it's a win-win.

                                                                                                                                                Still waiting on several of the other titles to arrive. I regret buying Pickles, Pigs and Whiskey. I just don't seem to make use of these Southern books even though I love them. One interesting feature though is that he offers a playlist which he has downloaded online for you to play while cooking various recipes out of his book. The playlist and the download are free which I thought was both ingenious marketing and very thoughtful at the same time.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                  I'd be curious about the "Florida something or other" book! Do you by any chance have a link to the review?

                                                                                                                                                  I have Pickles, Pigs and Whiskey. Haven't made anything yet, although it is the kind of book I would use. But hey, I'm in the South.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                    Here is the review:

                                                                                                                                                    A well known TV program offered the "Best" Five Cookery books of this Great Nation every two months till in ten months You'd Have Them All.Well,knowing Amazon,I chose to "search" them out here.Voila!Their Here!So Excited.This is a just One of the Five.Original Cost~Over $100.Not with the Partners with Amazon.So,what Are the Other Four?Va.Hospitality.Florida.Applehood& Motherpie from N.Y.State.Gosh,last One trying to recall~Oh,believe in North~West.If learn Different,will Let All Know.Not Fair to Over Charge in Tight Economy.Thanks To All Whom Are So Generous at the Site to Sell overages for those like Me,could not have afforded Any other Way...

                                                                                                                                                    I surmised it was Northwest Bounty because when I looked it up nothing else fit the bill. Re Florida, not as clear.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                      Wow. Clear as mud.

                                                                                                                                                    2. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                      Did you feel the earthquake yesterday?

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                        In LA? Yesterday? I don't know of any....maybe somewhere else in the state?

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                          In South Carolina (and Georgia), for a change.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                            Where have I been? Was it a big one? Are all of you ok?

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                              I'm not in SC but it sounds like it wasn't too big a deal. Maybe 4.5 or something? Still, weird and unexpected, and after all the cruddy weather we've been having, not appreciated.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                It was tiny, by your standards. 4.1. No damage that I've heard of yet. Really, the recent snow, which kept me snowed-in for three days, was a much bigger deal! But an earthquake is a handy distraction from the embarrassment of the snow storm. I mean, we get four inches of snow, the whole state shuts down, and everyone makes jokes about how silly we Southerners are about snow. We get a little earthquake, and we're on All Things Considered, without irony, for a change.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                            Yes, I did!!! It was just a slight rumble and thud. Very quick, but freaked the cats out.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                              So weird, isn't it? I spent a small amount of time in California as a kid, and when we had that one a couple of years ago I knew right away what was happening. Very calmly to Lulu "why don't we step into this doorway?"

                                                                                                                                                              Hope the cats are back to their usual (I'm just guessing here) nonchalance.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                There was one up in your area I think (?) maybe 3 or 4 years ago, I felt in my office in downtown Charlotte.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                  Yep, and it was weird.

                                                                                                                                                                  We'd been to NZ just a little before, and had left Christchurch days before the big one hit there. Lulu was heartbroken when she heard the news that the church had crumbled, and walked around singing a song about "the beautiful church" for a week or two. So when she realized what was happening here it wasn't good. No problems at our house though, thank goodness.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                    That must be the one we felt all the way down here. What an odd experience that must have been for Lulu!

                                                                                                                                                        2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                          More on A Homemade Life: Just made my first recipe out of the book. Made the ginger chocolate banana bread (the recipe is slightly different from the one in the book). Just had a slice warm out of the oven. Superb - not too sweet, the kind that is perfect with a cup of tea! I did modify the recipe slightly. Used Ad Hoc's cup for cup brand gluten free flour, only added 1/8 c. candied ginger and added unsweetened shaved coconut and a handful of pecans. Loved it!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                            Making two more recipes from the book today: The Sliced Spring Salad with Avocado and Feta and The Butternut Squash Soup with Pear, Cider and Vanilla Bean.

                                                                                                                                                            I already made the salad and had a sample. Loved it! Radicchio and Endive are slivered then coupled with radishes, avocado and a mustard vinaigrette. I added salted almonds and chicken. I also varied from the instructions re the salad dressing. It called for 5 T. olive oil. I used 1 T. each walnut oil, flax seed oil and lemon olive oil, the remaining 2 T. olive oil went in, and the dressing is perfect with the bitter greens.

                                                                                                                                                            Starting on the soup right now.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                            Molly Wizenberg has a new book out in March or April.

                                                                                                                                                            And thank you very much, I am about to buy three more cookbooks. !

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: nikkihwood

                                                                                                                                                              Oops! Sorry about that!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                I am a sucker for Junior League cookbooks. !

                                                                                                                                                              2. re: nikkihwood

                                                                                                                                                                Delancey: A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage by Molly Wizenberg. A Memoir. Publication date: May 6, 2014.

                                                                                                                                                                http://www.amazon.com/Delancey-Man-Wo...

                                                                                                                                                              3. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                I've seen that "Virginia Hospitality" cookbook at various gift shops all over Virginia for years. In fact, I'm pretty sure that it was around back when I went to college in Williamsburg 25 years ago. I've never so much as picked it up and flipped through the pages. I always assumed it was a bunch of recipes for tourists. Now you've got me intrigued.

                                                                                                                                                              4. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                Ironically, both books were shipped together from the same 3rd party seller. It took 20 days for them to arrive but they were both worth the wait.

                                                                                                                                                                CHEF INTERRUPTED I knew I would like because I'd previously had it out from the library. But, THE GEFILTE VARIATIONS, bought on a lark, as I said above, after having seen it mentioned in A150BR, was a real find. I immediately ordered 3 more copies which will be given out as thank you gifts to my Rabbi, our temple's director of education, and our Hebrew tutor.

                                                                                                                                                                If you are Jewish or remotely interested in Jewish cooking, you are going to want to add this one to your collection. Not just for the recipes, (which look great BTW), but for the prose at the start of each recipe and the stories that accompany them. I am going to seek out this woman and write her a fan letter. She did an amazing job with this book. Anyone who observes Shabbat will welcome the different slants she puts on old favorites. I really love this book.

                                                                                                                                                                I plan on selecting this one for my next A Cookbook A Week Challenge so I'll post a link when I do.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                  That is one I-Dare-You-To-Resist-It review for "The Gefilte Variations," and I don't have that much resistance. Adding it to my wish list since I'll be out of the country for the next couple of months, but will be looking forward to your reports. My mother always made her own gefilte fish, which made anything from a jar, can, or box unacceptable to me. Perhaps it's time I picked up the tradition.

                                                                                                                                                              5. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                I just picked up A Home Life too. It's been on the top of the kindle bestsellers list and I keep seeing it. I'm between books at the moment so figured I'd give it a go after reading the intro.

                                                                                                                                                              6. I picked up a few new titles from the A Country Garden Cookbook series. I've had the Berries and Lemons books for years but just found copies of Pears, Summer Fruit, Potatoes, Herbs and Onions.

                                                                                                                                                                I still have a few more to buy to complete the set. They are so pretty with some nice recipes in them. The Lemons cook was the first recipe I used to make lemon curd many years ago.

                                                                                                                                                                1. A public service announcement for anyone in Ontario that might be interested in the following books.

                                                                                                                                                                  Today I stopped at 2 Value Village stores. The following books ranged in price from $1.99 - $3.99. Most are in "like new" or "new" condition and I saw most of them in both stores which makes me think they may have been donated to VV by a publisher or overstocked bookseller. Here's the list, I'll put an asterisk beside exceptions:

                                                                                                                                                                  Cooking Light Soups & Stews Tonight

                                                                                                                                                                  The Italian Mama's Kitchen - Katie & Giancarlo Caldesi

                                                                                                                                                                  Classic Home Desserts - Richard Sax*

                                                                                                                                                                  Feast - Nigella Lawson (the UK version)

                                                                                                                                                                  The 250 Best Muffin Recipes - Esther Brody

                                                                                                                                                                  The Complete Garlic Lovers Cookbook From the Gilroy Garlic Festival* (I own this already but this book's condition was pristine...much better than mine)

                                                                                                                                                                  Christmas Memories with Recipes* - this looks incredible w recipes from Julia Child, Craig Clairborne, jane Grigson, Marcell Hazan, Lee Bailey, Jacques Pepin, Maida Heatter, Bert Greene, Edward Giobbi, Jehane Benoit, Irena Chalmers, Beatrice Ojakangas, Marian Cunningham, Helen Witty etc. (hard cover, like new $2.99)

                                                                                                                                                                  The Complet Book of Home Baking - Mary Norwak (looks great)

                                                                                                                                                                  The LaIna Book of Tapas - Elisabeth Luard - another find I'm sure!

                                                                                                                                                                  The Joy of Jams, Jellies and Other Sweet Preserves

                                                                                                                                                                  Soup Suppers - Arthur Schwartz - really, really appealing

                                                                                                                                                                  ...oh and a pristine copy of the 1959 version of A Guide To Good Cooking with Five Roses Flour* - $1.99

                                                                                                                                                                  12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                    That Richard Sax book is pure gold. I've made many good desserts out of there.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jammy

                                                                                                                                                                      Any particular recommendations from Classic Home Desserts, jammy?

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                        Indiana Orchard Crumb Pie
                                                                                                                                                                        Ginger Hottendots
                                                                                                                                                                        Down East Cranberry Apple Pie
                                                                                                                                                                        Original Toll House Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                        I know there are more, but I have many books that I use recipes from and I can't remember which are from which.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jammy

                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks! I'll make a note of these.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                            If you go to Google books, there's a preview copy online. The only recipe that is missing a page is the Orchard Crumb pie, but the ingredients are listed.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jammy

                                                                                                                                                                              I have the book, so no issues there, but thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                      Wow.. ok, will have to find out where my closet VV is!

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                        I love getting a perfect copy of a cookbook in a second hand store.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                          I spent some time looking through these books but the one that captivated me the most was the Richard Sax book because its prior owner had clearly loved it and made lots of notes beside the many recipes she'd made. Many were informative and some were even entertaining. My favourite note was about Ligita's Quick Apple Cake. Aside from being "Excellent" and made on numerous occasions (all dates recorded) there's a warning with this recipe saying:

                                                                                                                                                                          "Do NOT leave out on counter unprotected. Attracts ants!!!"

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                            Makes you wonder why such a well-loved book ended up at the thrift shop being sold away. Perhaps uninterested heirs? I have the Sax, and really should bake from it.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                              You would be surprised at how cherished items end up in tag sales and second hand shops when an elderly person closes their home. I actually bought a little tin recipe box full of family recipes and a family picture that it seemed no one wanted to claim. To me it is an honour and a blessing to have this type of item, at least as a baker I appreciate them.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                                                                                                                I suspect you may be right Caitlin. From the book notes I learned her Mom turned 92 in 1995. Her husband bought the book for her and she started baking from it immediately. He even baked one recipe year after year.

                                                                                                                                                                                Though these books may not be valued by the next generation of the family, I can't help but feel that somehow they end up in the right place. There are a few notes in there that sounded exactly like something I might have written. I feel privileged to have it and compelled to bake from it because of her notes...her passion transcends time.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. Okay so I said a month or two ago that I wanted The New Midwestern Table and Own Your Kitchen but I was waiting to earn gift cards to buy the b/c I wasn't confident in either of them to buy with my own cash.

                                                                                                                                                                            In the meantime I've earned gift cards and purchased The Essentials of Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan and The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook (both used but in brand new condition).

                                                                                                                                                                            I'm still really interested in Amy Thielen's cookbook. Anne Burrell's.... I think I'll just borrow from the library so I can confirm what I already suspect. And she was paid half a million dollars for her two cookbooks.

                                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                              I am a big Anne Burrell fan but I was a little underwhelmed by the books. I got OYK last fall when it came out and flipped through once, haven't looked at it again. If you are already familiar with the first book, there is not much new territory here.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: pamf

                                                                                                                                                                                yeah that's why I didn't rush to buy it. I rarely use her first book.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: pamf

                                                                                                                                                                                  I bought OYK recently, but have yet to use it. I don't own the first one yet, so hopefully I will find good use with it.

                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.yummyreads.com

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: NancyChin

                                                                                                                                                                                    Is the recipe on that link, because I didn't see it.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. A few thrift store purchases from the last month or so:

                                                                                                                                                                                *Guy Fieri Food: Cookin' It, Livin' It, Lovin' It by Guy Fieri Made at Home:
                                                                                                                                                                                *Vegetables by Dick & James Strawbridge
                                                                                                                                                                                *Louisiana Real & Rustic by Emeril Lagasse Marcelle Bienvenu
                                                                                                                                                                                *Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust by Ina Garten
                                                                                                                                                                                *The Best of Italian Cooking by Waverley Root
                                                                                                                                                                                *Visions of Sugarplums by Mimi Sheraton
                                                                                                                                                                                *The Doubleday Cookbook Vol. 2 by Anderson & Hanna
                                                                                                                                                                                *Wild About Kansas City Barbecue by Rich Davis & Shifra Stein

                                                                                                                                                                                Plus
                                                                                                                                                                                *Yes Chef by Marcus Samuelsson
                                                                                                                                                                                *Love & Kisses & a Halo of Truffles by James Beard
                                                                                                                                                                                *The Perfectionist Life & Death in Haute Cuisine by Rudolph Chelminski

                                                                                                                                                                                All look to have never been opened with the exception of the Mimi Sheraton!

                                                                                                                                                                                39 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                  "Yes Chef" is a good read. It is really interesting how all the different food cultures played into his life.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: stockholm28

                                                                                                                                                                                    I started reading this last night and had trouble putting it down. He writes well and is a natural storyteller. A really good read!

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: stockholm28

                                                                                                                                                                                      I really enjoyed that book! I finished it and immediately loaned it to another Chowhound who I thought would enjoy it.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                        Waving my hand in the air wildly. Me, me! And I just started it yesterday. Only had about 25 minutes (during Lulu's voice class) but am enjoying it so far. Hoping to get some time with it today (we'll see how that goes ...). Thank you so much.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: stockholm28

                                                                                                                                                                                        I took Yes, Chef out of the library based on these posts, and also enjoyed it very much. His account of the joys and travails of making his way through the kitchen ranks and new food experiences brought to mind Jacques Pepin's memoir The Apprentice, and that is a sincere compliment!

                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                        I have the Mimi Sheraton, and it has some lovely recipes, as I recall, but I haven't baked from it in a very long time. I know I used to, so I should get it out and take another look. I seem to recall some sort of coffee cake that was a challenge to make, but which was delicious. I remember because it was something that seemed like it would be a disaster when it went into the oven, but it was fabulous when it came out!

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                          I'll have to look for that coffee cake!

                                                                                                                                                                                          Actually the surprise purchase is the Guy Fieri book. I just grabbed it to resell since it was in perfect condition. But there are actually some pretty solid looking recipes in there. It would be a terrific book for stuff like Super Bowl party dishes.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                            My boyfriend's most favorite pasta ever is in the Guy Fieri book! It's the cajun chicken and alfredo recipe. I've made it twice and he still asks me why I won't make it for him again. It's a bit on the oilier side, but very delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                            http://www.yummyreads.com

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                          Real and Rustic is my favorite Emeril cookbook.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                            Anything by Jean Anderson is worth having. ANYTHING!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                              She lives in my area. I have very nice day dreams of meeting her at the farmers market, bonding over beautiful veggies and becoming her testing buddy with many pleasant afternoons spent hanging out in her kitchen...

                                                                                                                                                                                              This is what happens when you have no life!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                We should invite her to lunch one day!

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                              I have "The New Doubleday Cookbook," which is a 1985 single volume update of the two-volume edition originally published in 1975. This book, more so than "Joy" or any of the other compendium books of the era, is my go-to reference. Jean Anderson is such a superb recipe writer. And you know everything was personally tested, not handed out to freelancers. It annoys me when "Joy," in any edition, is so often recommended as a must-have when the Doubleday book is, imho, far superior.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                Honestly I think most books are better than Joy (covering head to protect self from flying rocks).

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Speaking of Jean Anderson, has anyone seen this book of hers: The American Century Cookbook: The Most Popular Recipes of the 20th Century.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sounds intriguing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have it. Some neat recipes there but can't think of an example right now since it's been awhile since I took it off the shelf,

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's one of very few books of hers I don't have, but buttertart speaks highly of it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I wonder if it's indexed in EYB?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        ETA: yep! Some fun recipes in there!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.eatyourbooks.com/library?q....

                                                                                                                                                                                                        ~TDQ

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I don't believe it is. Any of you that have it on your Bookshelf, do request it; a threshold number of Eat Your Books members have it (60+ if I'm remembering right), but it hasn't yet had enough requests to enter the indexing queue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          It's one of the "bibles" I feel would be a real shame for EYB not to have done before the site hits the milestone of 5000 books indexed (sometime this summer).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It is!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            http://www.eatyourbooks.com/library?q....

                                                                                                                                                                                                            ~TDQ

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm sorry, TDQ -- I got confused, and was thinking we were still talking about The New Doubleday Cookbook that JoanN posted about. It's not indexed or Indexing Now, despite being on 70 shelves: http://www.eatyourbooks.com/library/1...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh sorry for the confusion. I can't believe the New Doubleday Cookbook isn't indexed!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                ~TDQ

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have it too. Haven't really looked at it in a long time, but it's one of those books I find interesting to have around as a reference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I have The American Century Cookbook. It is interesting but not the sort of recipes which I'd use very often. But it is a good read and terrific reference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Jean Anderson's "Cheese Pie" is one of the easiest and best cheesecake recipes that I've ever made.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I should get the compilation volume, I had the 2 vol one back when. As far as the 20th C book goes, I love it for its overview of the development of food over the century, but the only thing I've made from it is the grapefruit cake. Anderson's prose is a joy anyway.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's funny but I seldom have seen the Doubleday in many peoples bookshelves...Perhaps when it was first released people were just so used to Joy and Better Homes and Gardens, etc. that the Doubleday didn't get the attention it deserved?

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Now I'm on a quest to find the other volume! Gotta love the hunt...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Funny, isn't it, that the hunt is often half the fun. Whether for books or ingredients.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                All the raves here convinced me to pick up the New Doubleday. Can't wait until it gets here, I'm sure it's 5 dollars well spent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I have never heard of it but will be looking it up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Ruthie789

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Get "Jean Anderson Cooks". There's a venison (can use beef) stew in it that's killer, and the peach soufflé is fantastic -- I can only imagine it with Ontario/Québec peaches...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I will look for it. Venison is often served on the Downton Abbey table but being somewhat of a commoner, I shall stick to beef!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        If only my husband had been able to make it out during deer season this year. Next season!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I have Jean Anderson Cooks (based on someone on here's recommendation) and I have never cooked out of it! In fact, it has banished to the shelf above my fridge (where all the less used cookbooks go to live until I can get myself to gift them, donate them, or re-prioritize them). I am making a note about the stew and the peach soufflé. What other recipes would you suggest?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ETA: Just checked the index. I see a venison ragout on page 405 and a venison roast on page 404. I am guessing the ragout (aka stew) is the one you were thinking of?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ragoût with chestnuts and cranberries...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That venison ragout is great. Another favorite from JA Cooks is her Moules Marinière. It was from that recipe that I learned to remove the mussels from the pot as soon as they've opened so you can boil the liquid hard and really concentrate the flavor of the mussels in the sauce. Also love the Cold Curried Bay Scallops, Shrimp, and Wild Rice--a terrific do-ahead summer buffet dish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yay! I am making a note. Thank you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My New Doubleday arrived. I like it so much I picked up the Jean Anderson Cooks you recommended.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yaaaay!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Amazon just sent me a list of upcoming books "you might be interested in." Ya think? Anyway, one of them was Frenchie. Anyone know anything about it? I mean aside from that it is from a chef who has a restaurant of that name in Paris. Is it going to be all chefy?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        They've got your number LulusMom!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          All too true rstuart, all too true.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Pre-ordered "First Prize Pies":
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1617...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Oooh. That looks good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. I'm excited to hear that Ottolenghi has a new book out soon. But what I really want is a copy of David Lebovitz's 'The Perfect Scoop.' I have a library copy, but it's become clear that I want a permanent copy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Actually, Ottolenghi has 2 new books on their way to publication:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Plenty More will be out in the UK in the Fall of 2014; no word on when The Nopi Cookbook will be released or when either title will be out in the US."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            http://eater.com/archives/2013/08/14/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh, Gio, you are an amazing wealth of information! My wallet doesn't like you very much :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Not too excited about Plenty More but Nopi sounds very interesting to me and with a different co-author it might just be another delicious spin on the Ottolenghi we know and love.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am looking forward to this too!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                There's also a book out in June from two ex-Ottolenghi chefs, who run one of my favourite restaurants in London, Honey & Co.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                http://www.amazon.co.uk/Honey-Co-Food...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I gave my mother the David Lebovitz a few years ago, and she LOVES it.. there is a cinnamon ice cream recipe that a friend requests at every major occasion!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  David Lebovitz has his first non-dessert themed cookbook coming out soon. I am intrigued!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I was so intrigued I pre-ordered it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Are we talking about "My Paris Kitchen?" I've got a hold on a library copy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've made ginger ice cream, raspberry ice cream, and blackberry lime sorbet. I took a bunch of each to a superbowl party. After the game was over, the person who brought me and the host fought about who would keep the leftovers. I suggested they split it on the basis that the host should get half for hosting, and the person that brought me should get the remainder for returning my tupperware. That seemed to have defused the conflict.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love THE PERFECT SCOOP too, especially the frozen yoghurt recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have yet to get to those. From recollection, most of those call for fresh fruit, but I mainly have frozen at present. I'm sorely tempted to drag out the frozen peaches to make peach yogurt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc at Home arrived yesterday. It has been a joy to read so far. I'm trying to get in the habit of reading hte recipe first, THEN looking at the ingredients, and even trying to guess what the amounts and ingredients will be based on the instructions. I realize that isn't hard, but it's a fun exercise for me. With that said, there are so many things in that book that I just have no interest in whatsoever, but that's probably because of how many actual topics are covered. It's certainly a reference-style cookbook, well laid out and the photos are glorious :) It was recommended in my rack of lamb post by a fellow CH'er so thank you for that!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: toddrhodes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That book has definitely grown on me over the past year. You just need to really read through the recipes and any of the other recipes you need to make before you can do the main one. Things can literally take hours and hours to make. The chicken soup with dumplings was like a 4 or 5 hour process. =) And I have to say that the brownies are OUTRAGEOUS.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Much appreciated for the advice. I haven't really gotten past the poultry and pork yet :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. The first Piglet decision has been made. Balaboosta vs. A.O.K. Review & Decision here unless you'd rather wait till after the COTM election:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://food52.com/the-piglet/judgment...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      26 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My poor nomination is not faring too well!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Not your fault Siegal. I was totally excited about the book.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Balaboosta arrived a couple of days ago and after quickly scanning it I decided to keep it. I was too late to cancel the order, it had already been shipped! (unusual) Because I've been cooking a Very Long time I'd like to see if I can work w her recipes to my satisfaction. We'll see how that goes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Can't wait to hear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I bet you can. And if you have successes, please let us know. I also have the book, so if there is anything worthwhile on there, I want to hear about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks Mell, I'll do my best and report back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Please do, Gio! My book is sitting at UPS depot - hopefully I'll go there tonight to pick it up. Depends on the roads condition; it's been snowing for most of the day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    My preserved lemons are just starting to get soft..will know how they turn out in another 4 weeks...lol

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wow, that was a great review! Just read it. Made me want to rush out and buy ..... the winner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Westminstress

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the next set of books is reviewed today. http://food52.com/blog/9753-the-tourn...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Westminstress

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love reading Sam Sifton. He's a brilliant food writer, AFAIC,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      He is indeed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Third go round of Piglet: http://food52.com/the-piglet/judgment...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Nice review by Brian Boitano.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Isn't it? I was pleasantly surprised by the depth of his review.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have Family Table but haven't cooked anything from it yet; seems to be my theme lately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Great reviews and books this year, I think.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Made me want to buy the winner. Not sure why I'm so surprised that it was so well written, but I am. Just goes to show.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I would totally buy it after that review. Except, I already have it! It makes me want to get it out and cook from it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I want that book. He totally sold me. And I love that sort of food. I'm having a very hard time not just immediately going to amazon for some stuck-inside for 2 1/2 days retail therapy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Have you made anything yet (sounds like you haven't)? Inquiring minds want to know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                He kind of sold me, too, and I thought I had previously looked at the book and passed on it. Will have to look again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: emily

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The ToC is avaiable on the "look inside" feature on amazon, if that helps (or hinders). I'm checking it out now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm sold on it, not sure the rest of the family would be as enamored. My library doesn't have a copy. Pffft.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    No, I haven't made anything yet. That is the case with so many of my books. Too many books, too many things to cook, not enough days in the year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This book has been on my wish list ever since I saw it first along with Pok Pok and now I am kind of curious about A.O.C. as well... The good thing about Amazon that it is very easy to return and doesn't cost a penny. Once I tried returns a couple of times I am much more comfortable getting books because I know that I can send them back if not happy. So, I might get all three and have a good look through before deciding to keep or not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I did a post in the Eat Your Books forum looking at this year's Piglet field from an EYB viewpoint -- indexing status, popularity on members' shelves, comparison with the end-of-year Best of Best list. [not as much overlap as you'd expect...]

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Gio & LulusMom,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                thanks for the introduction to the Piglet cookbook competition. It is wonderful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: AGM_Cape_Cod

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It was Gio who introduced me to it, so the thanks go entirely to her.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4. Flavours of Aleppo celebrating Syrian cuisine
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Dalal Dade-Badra and Elie Badra

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I picked up this book from library today-I was disappointed in the recipes. They are simple -easy to follow and adapted to Canadian markets-pictures are nicely done.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. This month, I bought How Easy Is That? by Barefoot Contessa. It's my first book from her, but I always hear a lot of hype about her recipes, so we'll see how it goes!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.yummyreads.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. For Valentine's Day, I got my husband the COTM, which is the Asian Dumpling book. It is definitely intriguing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. I was at Costco tonight and there were many cookbooks on offer. I brought home a Donna Hay book - Fast, Fresh, Simple. I must say I am quite taken with her style and this is my third book. Now I need to cook more out of her books :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Attention ON hounds, there were two Laura Colder books at $10 each - forgot the titles but if anyone mentions I would recognize. I love her TV show but do not find her books inspiring for whatever reason. I cooked only one of her TV recipes - salmon and asparagus wrapped in puff pastry and baked - very nice tasting and impressive presentation. However, never had a desire to make another recipe...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ooh.. I don't have a Costco membership, but that's worth seeing a friend is up for going! I just put the Canadian Living Chocolate cookbook on hold at the library.. anyone try it?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chapters had a Laura Calder book for just about the same price. The discount shelves at Chapters are great with some very good cookbooks going on sale.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ruthie789

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have Chapters on my list and hopefully will make it there this weekend. Thank you, Ruthie, for pointing the way :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Ruthie789

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I was just there today Ruthie, and saw that book! I was tempted by a Lisa Yockelson, but stayed strong!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                So many cookbooks these days, I could have them up to the rafters if I let myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Uh oh, CL chocolate???

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I know! Won't be able to pick up at the library until Friday.. will report back!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Great, because I WILL buy it if it's good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. I decided I needed to have Suzanne Goin's books, so I bought both Sunday Suppers at Lucques and The A.O.C. for the iPad. The A.O.C. looks great. I wish I'd had it before using up my winter glut of kumquats. Sunday Suppers is a bit of a problem on the iPad, so I can't recommend the book in this format. The table of contents does not list the dishes. It just list the chapter (the season), and then menu 1, menu 2, menu 3, etc. On top of that, there is NO INDEX!!!! So the only way for me to see the dishes included is to scroll through the whole book. Unacceptable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I also ordered a copy of Share based on dkennedy's comments. Just ordered today so it's not here yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Also for the iPad, I ordered A Salad for All Seasons, by Harry Eastwood. An odd thing for me to do since I'm not a big fan of salads, but let's say she has a very broad definition of a salad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I've very interested in the upcoming Diana Henry book, but haven't pre-ordered... yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Would love to hear more about A Salad for All Seasons. Please post, Mel, once you make a salad or two.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Will do.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. just checked out the gramercy tavern cookbook from the library.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              want.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              if all i ever do is play around with the dessert section, it will still be worth the cost! all so beautiful!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Simply New England --
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Chef Daniel Bruce of Meritage at Boston Harbor Hotel & Chef of the Boston Wine Festival dinner series. Interesting recipes that are straightforward in execution.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Pok Pok -
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Andy Ricker chef of Pok Pok restaurant in NY/Portland
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A very interesting read about getting real, truly authentic thai flavors, but requires a lot of special ingredients and many of the recipes are quite a lot of work

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: jody

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  OH now, Simply New England intrigues me. Thanks for mentioning it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jody

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pok Pok is one of those books I read and want to make every single dish. And yet, I haven't made any.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm sure I'd love it if someone else made every single recipe for me, but I get exhausted just thinking about making even one myself (this could have something to do with those 2 1/2 snow days ... and last week my husband was home sick every day).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: jody

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Agree on Pok Pok - I'm having trouble getting myself to try any of the recipes because of the sourcing. I'm not sure everything is available at my local 99 Ranch Market. This site has Pok Pok recommended ingredients and kits:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.templeofthai.com/food/pok-...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Recently, I won a copy of Taste of Treme by Todd-Michael St. Pierre. It's a cookbook consisting of cajun, creole and soul food from NOLA's jazz neighborhood. The recipes seem intriguing enough although I'm not enamored of the cutesy recipe titles (eg. Pride of the Parish Crabmeat au Gratin or Where Y'at? Shredded Pork Gumbo with Black Eyed Peas. One dessert recipe, Your Gay Best Friend's Mardi Gras King Cake Cupcakes with Flamboyant Cinnamon Mascarpone Frosting, initially grabbed my attention. But upon closer perusal of the recipe, I knew I may have to change part of the recipe. The cupcake portion is a doctored up yellow cake mix. My first recipe will probably be the Marais Street Pear and Pecan Muffins.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love deviled eggs but don't really make them. I saw D'list Deviled Eggs at the library and checked it out. Lots of different egg recipes but of course, I still haven't made any since I can easily eat all dozen eggs without blinking an eye.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Lastly, does anyone have the Mast Brothers Chocolate Cookbook? I've been slightly obsessed with it since I have been waiting for my library copy since the beginning of December. I made these glorious chocolate ginger snaps that were as good as the Medrich ginger snap cookies. I did make slight changes by adding candied ginger (per Medrich) and creaming the butter so the cookie would be softer. A lot of the recipes are appealing and the book is beautiful. I thought about buying the book but the Amazon reviews seems to indicate that there are problems with the recipes. Sigh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Here is the cookie recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: beetlebug

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I am a deviled egg fiend, and they are one of my go-to dishes for a potluck. I've made a million different variations, curried, pimiento cheese, etc... but probably the very best is the one from the Southern Foodway's Alliance Community Cookbook. They are just plain, but they are very rich, thanks to a whole lot of butter added to the mix. Just creamy, delicious deviled egg nirvana.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. I just picked up at the library Jane Grigson's Vegetable Book-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        what a wonderful book-lots of good recipes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        only negative no color pictures

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Any Jane Grigson is worth having. Look into her fruit book too. I worship her.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And her Charcuterie and French Pork Cookery

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sr44

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And Mushroom Feast, and British Cookery, and...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Let's keep these in mind and perhaps a Jane Grigson COTM could happen!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That would be one I would definitely participate in. It has been bruited about before...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I keep trying to convince the cotm crowd, so far no luck...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh pooh pah. If I were to choose a Grigson book which one ought I start with?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pooh Pah can barely type, cause she's almost rolling on the floor in laughter. So best to ask BT & Meatn3--they know more. I just want Grigson for cotm so that i'll know something.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: qianning

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Well you Do know a bunch of somethings... but OK. I'll ask the others you think may be more helpful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yoo Whooo... BT & Meatn3... which Grigson cookbook would you recommend for a Grigson newbie? Hmmmmm?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            From the four I'm familiar with I'd say Jane Grigson's Vegetable Book.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I gave a brief summary of the four I have here:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9631...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The first one should be "Good Things", I'd say, for the variety of topics, then the veg and fruit books. I also love the "Mushroom Feast".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      COTY? (year?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Thrift Store today

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The New James Beard
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              James Beard's New Fish Cookery
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Craig Claiborne New York Times Coookbook
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The Fannie Farmer Cookbook 12th Edition 1980
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The Charlotte Cook Book (Charlotte NC Junior League 1979)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What have I done? I am overwhelmed. I am excited to get into the Beards and always love those non-professional junior-league type cookbooks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nice haul!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sounds as if those were all from one Pearson's library. They seem to go together.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Possibly - definitely the Claiborne and the Beards

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The Charlotte Junior League may be because of date but is a nice, stark contrast - mostly exactly the type of cooking Claiborne and Beard were trying to get away from - all from the same period though so likely

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I am always amazed at thrift stores some of the things people choose not to keep - Mom's cookbooks are likely to be my only inheritance - I will treasure them

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Loving the Canadian auto-correct! <g>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ahahaha especially since I once sat on the great man's knee (class trip, one of classmates' fathers had been his roommate at uni).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I've been picking up some used cookbooks this month. Found a reasonably priced copy of Time Life Foods of the World Creole and Acadian. Decided to get a used copy of the 1997 Joy to compare to my 1975 copy. The Ultimate Cookbook from Bruce Weinstein, since I have a few of his other cookbooks and enjoyed them, and James Villas from the Ground Up, which is recipes using ground meats. Got all of them for less than 20 dollars total.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Creole and Acadian TL book is a delight.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I received the 1997 Joy as a Christmas gift the year it was published. I was so disappointed. I hope that you are not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I've still got my old, original FOW Creole & Acadian, along with the hardbound book that came with it. The recipe for Bananas Foster was my go-to recipe for New Years Eve dessert for years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. The gluttony continues.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I was at Barnes and Noble today and came across two books I'd never heard of and had to have. The first was a fun, hip book called THE MIGHTY GASTROPOLIS OF PORTLAND. It looked really interesting and wasn't very pricey so I snagged it. We plan on vacationing in Portland this summer so I rationalized it as a study guide. Next and more importantly, I picked up A LA MERE DE FAMILLE, the most impressive book I can remember leafing through in - well, forever. It is beautifully bound, loaded with photos, and the recipes are unbelievable. I had to own it. I am not a baker and I rarely think about candy, but still, I had to possess it. I came home, did some research, and ordered a copy on Amazon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Do any of you have any experience with either of these titles? I am wondering how it is I hadn't heard of either of these yet?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A La Mere de Famille is very crave inducing--Amazon has a "look inside" feature on it. It's perfectly lovely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I keep seeing A la Mere de Famille when I look at cookbooks on Amazon. I just can't figure out why they left out the metric weights in the recipes when the book was originally written with them. I would have been so simple to include them along with the American measurements in the US version. I actually looked at it on Amazon UK and it's only a few dollars more and you get the metric.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Drives me nuts when publishers do that to the US edition! Fine to translate, but give us both!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: MelMM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Fine to translate, but do it correctly, too! Reading a magazine of recipes translated from Italian, and it says that one type of yeast is baking powder. Clearly the word "yeast" should have been "leavening"! There are many others like that in this publication...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals) Announces the 2014 Food Writing Finalists:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            http://eater.com/archives/2014/02/18/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The IACP list has some real surprises. I didn't realize that vanity press books were eligible, but one of the three nominees in the restaurant/chef category, Stone Edge Farm Cookbook, is self-published. I see it's nominated in two other categories: someone reeeaaly likes it, or the IACP awards are the bulk of its marketing plan, or both. Or maybe it's totes deserving yet somehow didn't find a publisher.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's more than a little irritating to see Vegetable Literacy shunted to the ghetto of "Health and Special Diet", while Mollie Katzen's Heart of the Plate competes in the General category.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              In an effort to discover what the category 'Global Design' might mean, I looked at last year's IACP awards nominees. It made me realize that the categories change enough year to year to make it pointless to try to pin the judges down. So I'm guessing it's code for "excellent on the coffee table".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I was more than surprised to see that in the International category Balaboosta by Einat Admony (Artisan Books) was listed after all the negative reviews it received. What drives these awards, I wonder? [Tongue firmly planted in cheek.]

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nice to see the Toronto Star Cookbook in the "compilations" section.. I should take that out of the library. I have clipped many great recipes out of the paper..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think I'll buy it (the TO Star one). For old time's sake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I put it on hold at the library..
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    a colleague of mine told me that she helped the author track down a recipe for Tibetan Momo.. Toronto has a big Tibetan community...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rstuart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Very interesting. Let us know before I go nuts on Amazon.ca...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Will do ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm so disappointed Amy Thielen's New Midwestern Table isn't on the list. I hope the Beard Foundation doesn't overlook her...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I made the chocolate cake with broiled-on frosting, and, oh my what old-fashioned deliciousness!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. The Smitten Kitchen cookbook arrived here today and I am totally disappointed in it. I wish I had never bought it. Luckily I got it for just like $14 "used" for a brand new copy. I will hang onto it in case it becomes COTM here but I really don't see myself making much out of it at this point.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Explain? It's on my radar but not on my wishlist. Why don't you like it?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Siegal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Almost half of the recipes are desserts and, honestly, nothing really jumped out at me as something that I. MUST. MAKE. There are a few things that I will probably try eventually, but this is the kind of book that probably won't be worth the limited real estate that I have in the kitchen for cookbooks. I would suggest borrowing it from the library before purchasing it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        :: Almost half of the recipes are desserts ... nothing really jumped out at me... ::

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is why whenever possible I take a look at the recipe listings in a cookbook I'm considering buying at Eat Your Books.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Do you have a different response to the blog? That is, there've been must-make recipes? Or less dessert focus?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ellabee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I have been interested in far more of the recipes I've seen on the blog than in the book. I believe the author said that something like 80% of the recipes in the book were new and never-published on her site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks. I'll try to look at index

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Interesting. I have Smitten Kitchen out from the library and though I am not far into it, I am finding it to be an enjoyable read. I've never really explored the blog but the book appears to be well written. Will report back after I spend more time with it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: dkennedy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          OK, so I just finished leafing through Smitten Kitchen (always thought the blog was called Smitten Kitten, btw) and I have to say, I would buy this book. It appears to be a really good compilation of do-able weeknight and weekend recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Nothing to hooty toytie, but good solid recipes. Balsamic and beer braised short ribs (p. 179); pistachio masala lamb chops with cucumber mint raita (p. 189 - these are going on the menu for next week); peach sour cream pancakes (p.5); baked ranchero eggs (p. 37); honey and harissa farro salad (p. 79); corn risotto stuffed poblanos (p. 134); and though I am not a baker, almost all of her cookies sounded worth trying. I will acknowledge there are a lot of bread based dished (pastas, breakfast breads, cakes, homemade challah variations) but I think those are the kinds of dishes most people want, (not me,I'm not allowed) but most people.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also, the pictures really helped me like this book. Lots of pictures. Nichicaa, a gentle nudge. Do you ever report on the Cookbook a Week Thread? It is a thread devoted to giving one of your cookbooks you are thinking of discarding a week to convince you of its worth. I encourage you to test out some of SK recipes and see if you still feel the same way. Would love to hear what you end up deciding.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I took it out of the library last year after it got so much press and did very well in the Piglet. I didn't make a single recipe and have never regretted not buying it. I do make recipes from her website sometimes, usually fairly successfully, but the book was just not the right set of recipes for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I got Smitten Kitchen for Christmas in 2012 and was lukewarm at first. It has really grown on me, though. The granola recipe was my gateway, and has become a staple in this house (with modifications to nuts and fruit as desired). The inclusion of egg white and wheat germ makes it clump better than any granola I've ever made and I find the sweet to salty ratio perfect for me. I have served this granola to many guests and given as post-baby gifts and people almost always ask for the recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Her leisurely pizza dough recipe has also won me over (in fact just made it last night). I haven't made as many of her main dishes, but for those 2 recipes alone, the book earned it's place on my shelf. It's not as inspiring a cookbook as some, but it has solid, doable recipes which taste good to us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Balaboosta is going back to Amazon along with a couple of other duds; actually it is staying behind for a week or so for the final evaluation but I do not think it will stay for good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The New Persian Kitchen is on its way to replace Balaboosta and along with it comes longed for what seems forever Pok Pok... can't wait to receive both and anxious about being disappointed as has been the case lately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            21 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: herby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm totally interested in The New Persian Kitchen. Isabel's Cantina arrived yesterday. Only got a chance to look through the starters section so far, but I have a feeling this book and I are going to be good friends.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Persian cuisine is something that I would like to try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think I've cooked enough from Isabel's Cantina now to say that I think you will really like it. When I first looked through it, I thought it was too simple, but once I started cooking, I realized that even the simplest recipe in there is more than it seems. The recipes deliver a high return for minimal investment.