Hey hey! I hope that everyone had a great weekend! I was feeling a little under the weather last week so we’ve been taking it easy on the cooking. I do not have a “It Came From the Internet” post for you today seeing as we stuck to a lot of crockpot meals. We’re back with some great cooking posts this week for everyone. I had 4 cooking sessions between Saturday and Tuesday so I needed to be in tip top shape to soak in all of the goodness that was going on.
Since I spent lots of time laying on the couch resting I had plenty of time to pour over some of my favorite cooking blogs. I realized that everyone is releasing a cookbook this fall, I assume to gear up for Christmas gift giving…yay, it’s almost Christmas!!! I absolutely adore cookbooks but I have a pretty strict criteria that I follow before purchasing them. So I actually own very few of them.
- Is the book too specific?- “1000 cookie recipes” or “Chicken Chicken Chicken” are fictional examples of books that I wouldn’t even consider. Of course I love cookies and chicken but I don’t need to know how to make every possible chicken or cookie dish. Ideally I’m going to get knowledgeable enough to come up with combinations that would work with what we have on hand or craving.
- Are the recipes easy to locate on the internet…for free?- Who doesn’t like fried chicken but a quick Google search will provide me with 100’s of recipes.
- Are there large, detailed pictures to go with every recipe?- If not, suck it. I can’t handle not having pictures. Why do I want to spend my time and money making a dish that I think turned out how the recipe states but I don’t have a picture?
- Is the book put out by a specific company (Campbell’s, Kraft, etc)?- We try not to eat too many processed foods and these books are just an elaborate way to make me feel like I need to buy their product.
- Will I ever actually make these dishes?- I adore Julia Child but I do not own any of her cookbooks for exactly this reason. Shirred eggs with black butter sauce and Mousse de saumon (Salmon mousse, whatever that is) will not be hitting my table anytime soon. For every recipe that is actually something that we’d like to make in our house there are about 5 more that we’d never actually make or would even want to eat.
- Is this a beautiful book that I want to own?- With the popularity of Pinterest and the zillion cooking blogs on the internet, it’s much more convenient to run a search than pull out your cookbooks to see if they contain a specific recipe that you’re looking for. I find that I flip through some of my cookbooks about once a week to get inspiration of what to cook for the week but I do not use that as a primary resource. These books need to be lovely on display and make me happy just reading them.
With all of this said I present to you 3 cookbooks that I would happily add to my collection, 1 that I already own, and 1 that breaks many of the above rules but I MUST OWN:
- Thug Kitchen: Official Cookbook: Eat Like You Give a F*ck– This is not for the easily offended. I’ve been following these guys online for awhile and my spirit animal Scott and I are planning on making a few dishes from the cookbook…we’re also not so secretly mad that we didn’t think of creating a site like Thug Kitchen first. It’s pretty much exactly how we speak and what we like to do! If you can look past the “sentence enhancers” Thug Kitchen is full of recipes made with whole ingredients and encourage people to back away from the microwaves and actually cook for themselves. That’s a message I can get on board with and I love “sentence enhancers”.
- The Newlywed Cookbook: Fresh Ideas and Modern Recipes for Cooking With and for Each Other– This is the only cookbook that I actually own on this list. I asked for on our wedding registry. I had been eyeballing this book for so long. It has recipes that range from everyday to impressive, party worthy. I love that it covers so many scenarios and type of recipes all in one book. Bonus points because it is very pretty!!
- Clinton St. Baking Company Cookbook: Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond from New York’s Favorite Neighborhood Restaurant– I bought this cookbook for my brother and his fiance for Christmas last year. I had it on good authority that Santa was bringing them a KitchenAid so when I came across this book I thought it would be perfect. It met all of my qualifications and it seemed like they could use their KitchenAid to make some of these dishes. Brunch is my all time favorite meal and I’d eat brunch foods for every meal for the rest of my life if I could so a book that is dedicated to brunch is almost always a homerun for me. Clinton St. Baking Company is a very popular breakfast joint in New York City. They typically have a few hours wait for Saturday and Sunday brunch but they offer their breakfast menu all day so I’m planning on having some “brinner” there in December when TJ and I are in town next.
- The Can’t Cook Book: Recipes for the Absolutely Terrified! by Jessica Seinfeld– Full disclosure, I first heard that Jerry Seinfeld’s wife wrote a cookbook and I immediately looked into it. If you don’t know me in real life I’m fanatical about all things related to Seinfeld so that is what peaked my interest. Her first book, Deceptively Delicious was very pretty and had what seemed to be well written recipes but all of the dishes were “kid’s food”. I don’t really believe in “kids food”. Kids will eat what the parents are eating if they are not given a bunch of options. (Sidebar-I’m fully aware that as a childless person, you’re thinking that I’m totally talking out my ass but this is definitely something I stand by until proven otherwise.) I was very excited when I recently discovered that Jessica has written another book and it is not geared towards kids or families. It is for people who think that they can’t cook and I am definitely in that boat. Throughout her book she teaches technique along with the recipes and why certain ingredients are necessary for specific dishes. This is so important to me so I can actual learn what the heck I’m doing and why!
- B.O.A.T.S.2# Metime by 2 Chainz– Which is not a cookbook at all, it’s a CD that rapper 2 Chainz released in 2013 that came with a free 2 Chainz cookbook. Unfortunately that may have been a limited time offer because many of the more recent reviews on Amazon claim that their copy did not come with the cookbook. I’ll just share a few of the gems that are in the cookbook. If you can get your hands on this let’s have a reading party. It will be amazing!
- “Put on your Versace apron.”
- “If wearing a four-finger ring, carefully place it on a side table before starting to cook.”
- “KEEP IN MIND, ALL MEASUREMENTS ARE AT THE DISCRETION OF YOUR PALETTE. AS WE ALL KNOW, SOME PEOPLE HAVE A LOT OF FLAVOR, WHILE OTHERS ENJOY THEIR FOOD AND THEIR LIFESTYLE A LITTLE MORE SUBTLE (BORING). ALSO KEEP IN MIND THAT THESE RECIPES ARE INTENDED TO BE MADE AT 70 MPH WHEN YOURE ON A TOUR BUS, SO EXACT MEASUREMENTS CANT ALWAYS BE ACCOMMODATED.”
Do you have any cookbooks that you’ve really enjoyed? Why? Does anybody even still buy cookbooks anymore?