Cookbooks and food memoirs that will take your taste buds away
Mouthwatering edibles fill the pages, and yet I can never seem to cook every recipe in the book. This is the plight of a food book lover, who has no energy to be a chef. I admit that I buy cookbooks more for the pretty pictures than the actual recipes themselves, but I do have a few favorites recipes and authors I turn to over and over again.
Ellie Krieger’s cookbooks are a regular in my house. I make one of her healthy and satisfying concoctions at least once a week. She does amazing things with flank steak and fish, not to mention vegetables as well. She even got kids to eat polenta!
A number of food bloggers have also come up with cookbooks and food memoirs (another passion of mine) over the past decade. Deb Perelman released her The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, which holds several of her top recipes, although not all the ones I love from her site. While pregnant with my oldest I had her goat cheese with zucchini and squash pizza every week. I made her Blueberry Boy Bait for my office regularly (they never complained), and during a winter with one bad snowstorm here in Seattle I dove into her grandmother’s apple cake recipe. Her site and book deserve more of my time, but I get stuck on my favorites and just make them over and over again.
Chef David Lebovitz fulfilled my dream of French foods late at night through The Sweet Life in Paris, a memoir of his move to Paris along with a few favorite recipes. I’d stay up late at night reading in bed, simply salivating over his words that seemed to spring to life in my stomach more often than in my head. He most recently published My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories, a large format book that will look beautiful on my coffee table, and holds many delicious recipes I will try… one day.
My travels have also brought new cookbooks to my shelves. After five glorious days at Ranco La Puerta, I bought Cooking with the Seasons at Rancho La Puerta and The Mexican Slow Cooker, both written by La Cocina que Canta guest chef Deborah Schneider. My boys love meat, rice and beans, making these two books a natural addition to my cookbook shelf. I am trying to curb my sweet tooth and eat more healthy snacks between meals, which the Rancho book is sure to help with as well.
Enough about a few of my favorite cookbooks and delicious memoirs, here is a big list I compiled with a few food-loving friends.
What are your must-have cookbooks?
Our favorite cookbooks
- Ellie Krieger
- Giada’s Feel Good Food: My Healthy Recipes and Secrets by Giada De Laurentiis
- The Blender Girl: Super-Easy, Super-Healthy Meals, Snacks, Desserts, and Drinks–100 Gluten-Free, Vegan Recipes! By Tess Masters
- The Healthy Kitchen by Andrew Weil Md and Rosie Daley
- True Food: Seasonal, Sustainable, Simple, Pure by Andrew Weil, Sam Fox and Michael Stebner
- Cooking with the Seasons at Rancho La Puerta: Recipes from the World-Famous Spa by Deborah Szekely, Deborah Schneider and Robert Holmes
- The Mexican Slow Cooker: Recipes for Mole, Enchiladas, Carnitas, Chile Verde Pork, and More Favorites by Deborah Schneider
- My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories by David Lebovitz
- The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman
- Moosewood Restaurant Favorites: The 250 Most-Requested, Naturally Delicious Recipes from One of America’s Best-Loved by Moosewood Collective
- The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food from My Frontier by Ree Drummond
- Jamie Oliver’s Meals in Minutes: A Revolutionary Approach to Cooking Good Food Fast by Jamie Oliver
- Jamie Oliver’s Food Escapes: Over 100 Recipes from the Great Food Regions of the World by Jamie Oliver
- The Hamptons: Food, Family, and History by Ricky Lauren
- Everyday Food: Great Food Fast by Martha Stewart Living Magazine
- In Season: Culinary Adventures of a Pacific Northwest Chef by Greg Atkinson
Food essays and memoirs
- The Sweet Life in Paris by David Lebovitz
- A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table by Molly Wizenberg
- Delancey: A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage by Molly Wizenberg
- My Life in France by Julia Child
- Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain
- A Cook’s Tour: In Search of the Perfect Meal by Anthony Bourdain
- Hungry Monkey: A Food-Loving Father’s Quest to Raise an Adventurous Eater by Matthew Amster-Burton
- Dinner: A Love Story: It all begins at the family table by Jenny Rosenstrach
- Pretty Good Number One: An American Family Eats Tokyo by Matthew Amster-Burton
- A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle
- Only in Spain: A Foot-Stomping, Firecracker of a Memoir about Food, Flamenco, and Falling in Love by Nellie Bennett
- French Kids Eat Everything: How Our Family Moved to France, Cured Picky Eating, Banned Snacking, and Discovered 10 Simple Rules for Raising Happy, Healthy Eaters by Karen Le Billon
- Living in a Foreign Language: A Memoir of Food, Wine, and Love in Italy By Michael Tucker
- Harlot’s Sauce: A Memoir of Food, Family, Love, Loss, and Greece by Patricia Volonakis Davis
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