It's a great time to be a cookbook collector. In the face of a dwindling print industry, publishers have only stepped up their game, producing more beautiful, innovative, and fun cookbooks with each passing year. 2014 has, in particular, been a year of immense variety. Here are the highlights of the year.
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Like many food bloggers, Tim Mazurek of Lottie + Doof has something of a crazy cookbook collection—339 volumes, all stored in his one-bedroom Chicago apartment.
Husk chef Sean Brock is a seed-saver and a book-hoarder, collecting old classics and community cookbooks with the aim, he says, of owning every American cookbook that was printed in 19th century. Here are a few of his favorites.
The year Gabrielle Hamilton opened her restaurant, Prune, on the lower east side of Manhattan, she was approached about doing a cookbook. Finally, after 15 years and the wild success of her acclaimed memoir, Blood, Bones & Butter, Hamilton gives her hungry fans the cookbook they've been waiting for: Prune is a thick anthology of recipes from her restaurant, and it's as autobiographical as her previous literary effort, but in a very different way.
A cookbook changed Kathleen Weber's life. As she writes in Della Fattoria Bread, some friends gave her a copy of The Italian Baker by Carol Field, and Weber "had never seen a baking book like it before." She immediately started making her first biga, a starter commonly used in Italian breads. "From that moment on," she writes, she "baked day and night, reading through The Italian Baker as if it were a novel [she] couldn't put down." Now Weber runs Della Fattoria bakery and café in Sonoma County with her husband and children.
The powerhouse trio behind New York destinations dell'anima, L'Artusi, L'Apicio, and Anfora—beverage director Joe Campanale, chef Gabriel Thompson, and pastry chef Katherine Thompson—have joined forces again to bring their modern take on Italian dining out of lower Manhattan and into your kitchen with their new cookbook. Downtown Italian is filled with recipes that deliver the subtly novel and full-flavored dishes the trio is known for—simple Italian cooking that revels in New York sass.
Perks of Faith Durand's job at The Kitchn include a nonstop flow of new cookbooks to check out—more volumes than most of us can find space for. But how do you cull the keepers from the pack?
Sugar addicts take note: Rose Levy Beranbaum, author of The Baking Bible, shares her list of favorite cookbooks, sweet and savory.
Running a food blog for more than a decade means that Adam Roberts has quite a cookbook collection: he's edited it down to around 150 titles. Here are a few of his favorites.
What cookbook would you give to a kid in college, or to a new cook to celebrate their first kitchen? Here's our picks for the books we'd give to anyone looking to learn the basics.
Y'all know The Homesick Texan. You love her blog, her pinto bean and Frito salad, her gooey, cheesy braised beef enchiladas, and her easy, delicious buttermilk bacon-fat flour tortillas. Lisa Fain just knows how to do comfort food right. So I wasn't surprised that she has a cookbook collection about 250 volumes strong, heavy on the church compilations, the community cookbooks, and old classics.
We chat with 'The Wednesday Chef' Luisa Weiss, author of My Berlin Kitchen, about her most treasured cookbooks and the new dessert book she's writing.
Amy Thielen's fantastic New Midwestern Table celebrates iconic heartland dishes that haven't all gotten the nod of the cool kids—homemade braunschweiger (a soft, smoky pork pâté), beer cheese soup, and the homey chicken hotdish. Here, she shares a few cookbooks that inspire her.
I'm about a month away from turning in my first cookbook, and I can definitely say it's been the biggest project I've taken on in my professional life. What have I learned? For starters: stock up on plastic takeout containers.
"People seem to be hysterical about lots of photos in cookbooks these days," says David Lebovitz, but that's not really what he looks for. Instead, he wants cookbooks to offer a "unique perspective on the topic" at hand. Here are a few of his favorite books and cookbook authors.
Amanda Hesser—mastermind of Food52 and writer of the epic Essential New York Times Cookbook—is something of a cookbook addict. Here are her picks for the best cookbooks for baking, for big dinner parties, and for giving as gifts.
I'm stocking up on butter to get ready for Dorie Greenspan's new baking book. But in the meantime, here are a few of her favorite cookbooks and cookbook authors.
As I planned out the recipe list for my cookbook on Mexico City cuisine, I couldn't leave out pancita, a soup of tripe and chilies. There was just one problem: I can't stand it.
Deb Perelman of Smitten Kitchen owns 144 cookbooks...and that's after pruning them down. We ask about her favorite sources for recipe inspiration and the books that really have stood the test of time.
Molly Wizenberg of Orangette shares her thoughts on cookbooks (and food blogs), plus the favorites she returns to again and again.