In my other life, I'm a food blogger, testing recipes in my kitchen and serving them to everyone I love who will eat them. Because of this, I hoard cookbooks instead of fiction. I love a good story, but I'd much rather sink my teeth into a cookbook I can read from cover to cover.
This week I had a message in my inbox asking for my favorite cookbooks...which led me to believe this would make a great blog post. Here it is!
My top cookbooks I love and why.
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I am a huge fan of every Shauna Niequist book, but this is the book she was born to write. It's more like a memoir with recipes than a cookbook. Each chapter will make you wish she was your BFF in real life. She was my boss for a few years and turned into a friend. She mentions many hot spots in Grand Rapids, South Haven, and Chicago. One of my favorite recipes is the Green Well Michigan Salad. It's divine. If you buy one cookbook this year-- this.
I am a follower of Lisa's blog and love her practical approach to feeding her family real food. This book not only includes plenty of information and ideas, but without the shame that sometimes comes along with healthy cooking. You'll learn how to shop, what to prioritize, how to budget, and the most amazing lunch ideas for kids. Caution: this may totally transform how you feed your family. One of my favorite recipes I've made over and over again is her cinnamon raisin bread. My boys love it slathered with cream cheese as a snack or in their lunch box.
I may have collected ALL of Pioneer Woman's cookbooks, but if you're going to start with one, then go with her year of holiday recipes. Her food tends to be rich and she is the queen of holiday menus. If I had to name one cook whose recipes I use the most, it would be PW. I have her Malted Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe memorized, swear by her Perfect Pot Roast, give her homemade Ranch Dressing as gifts, and everyone swoons over her Creamy Mashed Potatoes. The bonus of her cookbooks is that there are step-by-step photographs for every stage of the recipe. Tip: keep plenty of butter stocked in the fridge. :-)
We know Ina can be a little unrealistic. But dang, the woman can entertain. I've collected all of her cookbooks through the years but if I had to choose, I'd say Foolproof is my favorite. Not all of her recipes require unicorns and fairy dust-- just select a few recipes you're willing to try and master them. You'll be glad you did! She's another cook that will require plenty of butter.
I am far from a paleo eater, but this book did open my eyes to new ideas and healthy cooking. I make her Mustard Chicken Thighs regularly and they make the house smell amazing. I highly recommend making a double batch of this chicken, shredding the leftovers, and eating them with eggs for breakfast and topping your salad at lunch.
I don't own Sunday Suppers, but it's on my wishlist for this year. In my best version of my life, I throw open the doors to our house on weekly basis and invite friends over for dinner. Not to be a fancy pants, but just to spend time together around the table. A notion that I learned from Shauna Niequist, and I think would be furthered by this book.
What's on your cookbook wish list?
What am I missing?