Monday, July 5, 2010

Mish Mash Monday - Cookbooks

First of all -- whatever Mr. Chewy says, I DO NOT have too many cookbooks. Ok, maybe a few too many. But I have thinned the herd over the past few years. (Sorry to my sister's husband, as they ended up at her house!)I like to read them, and yes, try some of the recipes too. Over the past few years, I'm more likely to check a cookbook out from the library, and decide if it's worth the purchase after perusing it for awhile - often I'm able to then find it at half-price books, or I do realize that there are now millions of millions of recipes available on the web - but there is just something about that book, whether it's looking at others cookbooks and knowing where the best recipes are by where the book opens to (or where the pages are stuck together!)

So, here are my top picks for cookbooks that get used over and over again here,(in no particular order) maybe they are home to a favorite recipe, a great reference, or just an entertaining read (doesn't everybody read cookbooks?).

Better Homes and Gardens - When I need something basic like a sauce, or looking for cooking times/temps. This is the one that comes out. I know I can count on "the red book" to have a variety of recipes that have been tested over and over again, directions that are easy to understand, and will please most. Also good nutrition information that allows me to create meals as healthy (or unhealthy) as I would like. I have mine, and my grandmas - very different, but both great resources.

Pampered Chef Recipes from the Heart - Not one I use a lot - but it has some great party and brunch recipes. Although the page it opens too is for chocolate pudding cake. It's a great quick recipe that I pretty much always have the ingredients on hand for, so if I need a dessert on the fly - it often gets made. It's the one with the blue cover sold by fundraising groups. A close 2nd from the Pampered Chef collection would probably be the Stoneware collection cookbook (which has a great baked french toast recipe!).

More with Less This is another one that has been around for awhile - about 25 years. This compilation of recipes from Mennonite kitchens around the world focuses on feeding ourselves and the world by examining what we eat and working to eliminate excess calories, meat, and packaging - all the while saving money that can be better spent to help others. Definitely a great timeless choice for chewy families.

Grandma's church cookbook I'm pretty sure there are more recipes in this book than there are people that live in the town, but it's a good one. For awhile I would call my parents and ask questions like: "I'm going to make banana bread, and I have recipes by these three women, which one should I make?" It contains recipes for everything from homemade playdoh to window cleaner to countless cookies and bars, and some pretty good "grown up" slush recipes as well!

Walt Disney World Cookbooks including the one at left have a special place in my collection. One of the highlights of our trips is the unique and varied dining experiences available. It's always fun and a bit of vacation anytime to try to recreate some of our favorites at home. I also have a few of the Food and Wine festival cookbooks. Whether it's Walt Disney World or other travels, a cookbook has become a favorite souvenir. Food is always such a big part of travel - so why not bring it home?

So those are just a few of the cookbooks on my shelves that get repeated use/readings. What are your "go-to" cookbooks?

1 comment:

  1. of course everyone reads cookbooks!! we surely aren't strange!! i have grandma's maryhill cookbook- it's a big fav-all my many church cookbooks are great- another fav is a southern bell telephone employee one that has tons of great recipes from people in georgia & s carolina mmmm good old southern cooking!! better homes and gardens , of course- & i really like all their "specialized" cookbooks- ground meat, fish & seafood, casseroles, cookies & candies....