i have a lot of cook books floating around here. i like to have a variety of recipes to choose from. who doesn’t?
one of my all time favorites is the fanny farmer cook book. there are so many helpful tips and information in addition to the recipes. it’s quite a hefty little cook book! the pages are covered with splatters from a sloppy cook. i like how each type of meat is broken down with diagrams of cuts and descriptions of the cuts, along with the best way to prepare them. the same is done for fruits and vegetables too. it’s a cook book i highly recommend to anyone wanting to cook from scratch!
the nourishing traditions cook book is another great book that talks about preparing foods in the ancient tradition, soaking foods and keeping them alive (as opposed to just baking them such as granola which is supposed to be a no-no…we love it here so i make it anyway!). in addition to recipes, the columns are filled with customs of tribes around the world on food preparation and statistics of their health.
the sunburst family cook book is a hippy style cook book that offers alternatives to cooking with sugar and refined flour. recipes usually use honey and whole grain flour as well as other types of flours and sweeteners. it is vegetarian based.
putting it by with honey is excellent for jelly and jam recipes using honey instead of sugar. they generally turn out a bit runny but around here, sweet is sweet.
those four preside within easy reach for reference. the rest of my varied stash hang out on a higher shelf, some being rotated during the season they are needed the most:
dry it, you’ll like it! is about dehydrating just about anything, including meat.
wild fermentation is useful during harvest season to make krauts, pickles and such.
solar cooking gives me ideas during the summer on how to use my solar oven.
in addition to those perennial favorites, i have another assortment that sits even higher:
the vegetarian epicure
the vegetarian epicure, book 2
fields of greens
moosewood cook book
moosewood restaurant cooks at home
the barefoot contessa
the naked chef
the little house cook book
cooking by moonlight
that is the short list! there are plenty more hidden around the house as well. the problem with that is i use maybe 1-2 recipes out of the majority of the cook books and so they sit around collecting dust and getting in my way, thus the reason they are up high on shelves.
to solve that problem, i have compiled my own cook book of sorts for my household binder. i type the recipes on a page created in word, including the source book and page number for easy reference and then print the pages out and keep them in my binder. i have 4 sections: entrees, sweets, breads, misc (sourdough, kefir, kombucha, etc). when i try out a new recipe, i’ll add it to my word document and print the page once it’s full and add it to my binder. that way, i’ve always got my tried and true recipes within reach without trying to remember which cook book i found a particular recipe in and spend half the day trying to find it. and even though i love my fanny farmer cook book, having all the recipes i truly enjoy all in my binder saves me from trying to remember the name of the recipe. i still use my fanny farmer book weekly but if there’s a specific recipe i want, i go straight to my binder. the bonus is, when i travel, i generally take my binder along since it always has travel information in it as well. so, if i’m staying away from home, i still have an arsonal of recipes at my disposal any time i feel like whipping something up. and yes, even when camping, i use it!
now that i’m organized, who’s got some more cook book suggestions for me??? what is/are your favorite cook book(s)?