I was making my Christmas baking list, then my menu for Christmas dinner, and it got me thinking what cookbooks have I bought this year, which one's have I actually used, which one's have I loved. While thinking about it and thinking about sharing it with you I began to think about the publications I subscribe to and what I use most from those, and what about online, blogs, websites. Browsing through a cookbook should be inspiring, but not off putting....I would love to eat that, but there is no way I can make it or that looks awesome, but what is with all these absurd ingredients that will send me to 5 different stores to find maybe half of them. As a dairy free house who eats locally/seasonally and my sister in law is gluten free I have a lot of cookbooks for vegans, gluten free, seasonal cooking. I have an addiction to cookbooks. My "save for later" checkout cart at amazon is pages upon pages and I browse through picking up another few every so often (more often than every so). My top 5 may or may not be on NYT must have cookbooks of 2010, they may not have even been released this year, but they have been my go to's this year, giving me extra confidence when I am looking for inspiration they are going to help me out. So here is my list of Top 5 Cooking Resources of 2010.
1. The Divvies Bakery Cookbook
I have loved Divvies products for a few years, regularly ordering 5 lb bags of chocolate chips or festive lollipops for my kid or chocolate bars for s'mores in the summer. When I heard they had a cookbook coming out I could not wait. It was a name I trusted, and the cookbook has not let me down. I have by now made several items from the cookbook and nothing has been short of mouthwatering. I always enjoy people who sneer at dairy free claiming you can taste a difference. I laugh, because trust me, these days you can't and this cookbook proves it. (and this comes from a dairy lover) But not only is it dairy free it is also nut and egg free too. And it is hands down turning into one of my all time favorite baking cookbooks. *Note even if you don't have food allergies you should pick this one up.
2. Gourmet Today
I miss Gourmet magazine. It feels like I lost an old friend. Thankfully I have Gourmet Today to fill some of that void. Sometimes cookbooks feel like they left out that one ingredient that would put the dish into the WOW, but didn't want to share it's secret, well Gourmet Today is sharing the secret. When I'm wondering dinner and looking for inspiration this is my go to book.
3. ChopChop Magazine
Ok this one is a little young to get too excited about, but I have loved what I've seen so far. It's a quarterly magazine that launched in 2010. It is for kids, teaching them about food, choices, and getting them cooking. My 3 year old has loved looking through and we read it together. I hope this magazine sticks around for a while because it's a good one for a kid at any age.
So I changed this one (if you read a little earlier). I was driving around thinking about it and I felt I needed to change it. I know it's broad, but following folks who cook and/or tweet links to blogs or food news, there have been many times this past year where I have a read a tweet and then printed out the recipe or run into the kitchen to make it or just gotten inspiration, advice, or a connection. Twitter has opened up my world to people who have similar interests from the farms that my food comes from, to chefs, to hobby cooks, gardeners, restaurants, etc. So Twitter should definitely be on this list.
5. The Flavor Bible
This is a fantastic resource to have in your library. It is full of awesome flavor profiles: what compliments each other, helps in what to stay away from combining, what is in season, it goes on. I have used this most of all of my cooking resources. Knowing what I have in my kitchen I would look up an ingredient and from there create a dish. Instead of reading a recipe and going to buy the ingredients, this book allows real creation to begin. Love it.