Dust off your cookbooks and get ready for the baking season
Yes, I learned all that from a cookbook. That cookbook taught me how to plan meals, frost a cake with flair, sear a roast beef, substitute for ingredients not on hand, find nutrition information for the foods we ate, and get creative in the kitchen.
Cookbooks aren't boring. Cookbooks are fun and I love to collect cookbooks. Just look inside my kitchen bookshelf and you'll only see the half of it. There are cookbooks for most any occasion. All-purpose cookbooks. Beverage guides. Bread baking recipes. Vegetarian dishes. And more.
What Makes a Cookbook Worth Having?
A good cookbook is any cookbook that helps you prepare delicious and nutritious meals that you can reasonably re-create in your kitchen. Here are a few guidelines to help you choose a cookbook that is right for you.
- Does the cookbook appeal to you? Choose a cookbook that serves up recipes that you and your family will enjoy eating.
- Are the recipe instructions easy to follow? Read a few of the recipes. Directions that are split into numbered steps are easier to follow than directions that are grouped into paragraphs.
- Is the cookbook organized so that recipes are easy to find? Most cookbooks are organized into sections whether it be by type of food (meat, fish, poultry), cooking method (baking, broiling, boiling), or by the dish (breakfast, lunch, dinner).
- Is the cookbook easy to work with in the kitchen? Does it lay flat? If it doesn't, buy a cookbook holder that not only keeps the book open but also keeps food from splattering on the book pages.
- Did the cookbook teach you any new tricks? Look for cookbooks that share a few tricks of the cooking trade. A cookbook should make cooking an adventure that is enjoyed and savored.
My Favorite All Purpose Cookbook
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The Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book has been updated consistently since 1930. I have the 10th Edition and the 16th Edition was just published in September, 2014. Inside this cookbook you'll find:
- Over 1200 recipes and 1000 color photos.
- Suggestions on how to make the same dish in different ways.
- Chapters on holiday meals and home canning.
- A fruit and vegetable guide with photos.
A Cookbook That Makes Me Feel Good
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Why does this book make me smile? Kelsey Nixon's sunny personality just shines off the pages. Learning new things is so much easier when you have a friendly person standing by your side. I absolutely adore this book and you can read more about my ravings in my book review, Food Makes the Love Go Round.
What Are Your Favorite Cookbooks?
There's no right or wrong when it comes to cookbooks. I have a shelf full of recipes and other foodie concoctions. Even though many of these books are only opened on rare occasions, each of my cookbooks has a special purpose in my kitchen.
Tell me about your favorite cookbook in the comments below. And, if you don't have a favorite, take a look at my selections and add some spice to your cooking routine.
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