Jerusalem is by far my favorite cookbook. I never tire of reading Ottolenghi and Tamimi’s descriptions of Jerusalem or perusing the delightful photos that really bring the city to life. Their recipe for shashuka has become a staple in our house, as has the recipe for chocolate babka. I sometimes find ethnic cookbooks tiresome, because they are full of ingredients that are difficult to find and poorly explained techniques that are nearly impossible to master. Not the case with this gem. If I could only keep one cookbook, this would be it!
Who doesn’t love Deb Perelman? Her recipes never fail, her stories always entertain, and the woman love delicious food. Several recipes in the Smitten Kitchen Cookbook quickly made it into our weekly repertoire. Most notable, the roasted eggplants with chickpeas. Her recipe for roasted butternut squash gallette is also a crowd pleaser, and perfect for potlucks or brunch!
When I was in college at the University of Washington, my roommate and I used to go down past the ave, to this little literally hole in the wall (it was only a walk-up window) gluten-free and vegan bakery called the Flying Apron. We would stand in the narrow window, drooling over all of the treats like berry corn muffins, gingerbread men, and cupcakes. They have since moved to a beautiful location in Freemont, where you can enjoy their delicious treats inside. As you might imagine, when they published Flying Apron’s Gluten-free and Vegan Baking Book, I was among the first in line to buy it. A great mix of sweet and savory recipes using alternative flours and fats. I love the recipe for the berry corn muffins, flying apron scones, and tahini cookies. Also, this cookbook has the best recipe for gluten free chocolate chip cookies that I have ever tried.
If you think “the discovery that revolutionizes home baking” is a bit extreme, you obviously do not own this book. If you love the idea of fresh bread, but sigh at the thought of kneading dough for hours just to have your work gobbled up by your hungry family, check out Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. In addition to scores of recipes for yummy baked goods, the authors describe how to mix up a huge batch of bread dough (no kneading required) that you can bake off at your leisure!
Canal House Cooks Every Day is the perfect gift for your favorite cook. The photos immediately transport you to the Canal House Table, and the recipes range from the very simple to the a little complex. Almost everything can be incorporated into a menu that is sure to delight any dinner guest. I especially enjoy the photo spread of homemade pasta.
If you enjoy Aran Goyoaga’s recipes and delicious food photography on her site Cannelle et Vanille , you will love her beautiful cookbook Small Plates and Sweet Treats. Even though I am not gluten-free, I love the way she incorporates a different types of flours to create not simply passable gluten-free desserts, but treats that are sure to wow even the most skeptical eaters.
Gluten-Free Girl Every Day is another great cookbook from one of my favorite Pacific Northwest based bloggers. Gluten-Free Girl Every Day is filled with scrumptious and wholesome recipes and a few yummy gluten-free alternatives for old favorites.
David Lebovitz is my favorite blogger/cookbook author/ice cream king. There. I said it. I find his posts about life in Paris and his travelogues endlessly entertaining, and I know I can count on him for straight forward recipes that work. The Perfect Scoop is no different. Pick your flavor, avocado, anise, chocolate, vanilla, blackberry swirl, cheese cake, cinnamon, eggnog. After reading The Perfect Scoop you will be inspired to make all sorts of flavors, but will also have a solid understanding of ice cream making allowing you to develop your own recipe for anything you can think of.
Vegetable Literacy is a beautiful book. I can’t decide whether I should keep in with the cookbooks or on the coffee table. Divided by botanical family, Madison describes each family in detail and explores the relationship between vegetables, herbs, and edible flowers, and uses this insight to suggest solid flavor combinations. Plus, in detail and provides yummy ideas on how to cook them. Try the pearl onions braised in cider with apples, rosemary, and juniper.
Tender is a beautiful cookbook by well known British food writer Nigel Slater, that focuses on making the most of seasonal vegetables. Flipping through this book never fails to inspire me with a new flavor combination.
Somehow, Heidi Swanson’s (from 101 Cookbooks) has way of photographing food that seems inviting, yet pensive. Super Natural Every Day is full of thoughtful recipes with real ingredients. The simple flavors of her recipes are the perfect base for whatever herbs and spices you’re in the mood for.