A Few Current Cookbook Favorites + Giveaway

December 21, 2010(updated on October 3, 2018)

cookbook stack one

Lately, it seems as if every day brings a new gift guide or best cookbooks of the year list from some corner of the internet. I briefly considered putting one or another of my own together, but I did a gift guide last year (and things haven’t changed much in the world of canning since then) and truly, I am not perfectly acquainted with all the new cookbooks that came out this year.

cookbook stack two

Instead, I thought I show you the stack of cookbooks that I’ve been flipping through and using the most lately. Some of these came out this year, but a handful of them are classic books that I’ve loved for years.

How to Feed Your Friends with Relish

How to Feed Your Friends with Relish came out several years ago. However, I only discovered it recently, so it’s happily new to me. It’s just the kind of cookbook I like best, lots of good food and plenty of narrative that allows you to read as if it were a novel. Plus, knowing that it was written by a British author means that when I read it, I can use an English accent in my head, which is a whole other kind of satisfying entertainment.

DIY Delicious

D.I.Y. Delicious by Vanessa Barrington is a book that falls firmly in my wheelhouse and so will certainly appeal to many, many readers of this site. Essentially, she set out to learn how to make a whole world of things we’ve taken to buying at the grocery store. She takes the homemade assignment far further than I do here and shows how to make lovely things like tortillas, worlds of vinaigrettes and sour dough starter.

The Way We Cook

The Way We Cook is a book I first discovered when it first came out in 2003 (in fact, Amazon tells me that I bought it almost exactly seven years ago today) and I love it as much today as I did when it first arrived. In the beginning, it was an aspirational cookbook for me, full of things like seared scallops and many-ingredient stews.

As I became a more confident cook, I grew into it and my copy is now wrinkled and stained. I’ve got good news for you all too. I recently spotted copies at Borders for $4.99, so if it sounds interesting to you, head to your local outpost and see if you can’t score a bargain copy.

Everything Healthy Slow Cooker Cookbook

Written by fellow food blogger Rachel Rappaport, The Everything Healthy Slow Cooker Cookbook is a fantastic book for those of us who love our slow cookers. The thing I like most about this book is that it has helped me expand my understand of what a slow cooker can do (in the past, I’ve use mine primarily for fruit butters, chicken stock and cooking beans). There are a number of recipes I’ve marked that I hope to try soon. After all, what better time of year for a slow cooker than chilly winter?

Almost Meatless

In recent years, I’ve been working hard to buy better meat. For me, this means that it was locally raised and grass-fed. Of course, that choice comes with a heftier price tag and means that the end result is that we end up eating less meat.

Happily, Almost Meatless has been on my shelf since the spring of 2009, helping me make that good meat taste wonderful and stretch further than I ever thought possible. It’s a really great book that also happens to have been I written by two women I know and adore. However, I’d love it even if they were perfect strangers.

Salted

Written by salt expert Mark Bitterman, Salted, is a glorious book. Admittedly, I was a natural audience for it, as I’ve been obsessed with salt for years now (truly, I have more than eight varieties in my kitchen right now). But even if I was a complete salt novice, I would have been quickly converted by its lovely pictures and pure passion. If you get a book store gift card for the holidays this year and find single subject books fascinating, you should consider splurging on this one.

Love Soup

Not to be totally redundant, but I do truly love soup. Be it bean, chicken, beef or vegetable, I welcome it in my kitchen. I first heard about Love Soup when it came out last fall. I spent a year resisting buying it (when I buy a new cookbook, my husband raises an eyebrow and says, “really? Another one?”) before finally succumbing back in October. Since then, it has served as inspiration for many a warming bowl of soup. When my sister gets married someday, I want to give her a copy of this book paired with a sturdy soup pot.

In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite

You’ve probably heard about In the Kitchen with A Good Appetite already. It’s been something of a food blog darling since it came out this fall. I tend to be a little skeptical of books that get so much attention (I can’t help but root for the underdog), but in this case, the people were right. It’s wonderful. I particularly love the fact that there’s a chapter called ‘Things With Cheese.’ There is no way not to love this book.

The Yogurt Bible

I like yogurt. I like it plain, with granola or with a few spoonfuls of jam stirred in. I also like to cook with it (example: this quick bread recipe). I’m loving The Yogurt Bible because it has opened up a wider world of yogurt appreciation than I ever knew possible. Mmm, yogurt.

Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook

I have a well-documented weakness for community cookbooks and have at least 25 in my apartment (a couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to adopt a number from a collection that had belonged to the mother of a friend of a friend). However, The Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook is really a whole different animal from those simple spiral-bound community collections. It’s an expertly curated assortment of classic southern recipes and I love it.

Mixt

I love salads nearly as much as I love soups. In fact, just this evening, we had a chopped salad of crunchy veg, grilled chicken and garbanzo beans, bound together with a pesto-mayonnaise dressing. It was a new salad for me and came to be because I’ve had my copy of Mixt Salads out on the dining room table for the last week, radiating fresh ideas. This is wonderfully helpful since I often find myself treading the same well-traveled path between butter lettuce, arguula and baby spinach. It’s nice to eat something new.

Gifts Cooks Love

As you may have figured out, I’m a sucker for edible gifts. Gifts Cooks Love takes my simple canning and baking and reminds me that it can be elevated it into something special. I realize it doesn’t do you a whole lot of good for this holiday season, but this is the kind of volume that will become a classic that you’ll turn to year after year.

Yikes, writing this post has been something of a marathon. I hope you made it this far! If you did, you’re in luck. I have copies of two of the books on this list to give away. Leave a comment sharing your favorite cookbook to give as a gift by Thursday, December 23 at 11:59 p.m. to enter for a chance to win a copy of either The Yogurt Bible or Gifts Cook Love.

289 responses to “A Few Current Cookbook Favorites + Giveaway”

  1. I love the old church cookbooks where everyone contributes their own best recipes. There’s always some great canning recipe in them. My church just put out a cookbook last year of which I was an editor. I ordered several copies of them to give to my daughters and daughters in law to be.

  2. I’ve never given a cookbook as a gift, but my favourite cookbooks are the New Better Homes And Gardens cookbook to cook from and One Bite Won’t Kill You to read.

  3. My favorite cookbook to give is The Margaret Rudkin Pepperidge Farm Cookbook. I have an original 1963 edition that I found at a garage sale. It not only has recipes, but also the story of Margaret Rudkin’s life and how she started Papperidge Farm.

  4. I think The New Best Recipe is a fabulous gift. The book is huge, but I love how the authors TESTED everything and talk about why they made one decision over another. Fantastic book!

  5. I love the basic, simple, How to Cook Everything. Too many of my friends don’t even know how to start cooking.

    This year, we gave Artisian Bread in 5 Minutes a Day to about a half dozen people. Yum.

  6. My favorite cookbook for folks just starting out in the world is Joy of Cooking. Good recipes, good science, awesome index… perfect!

  7. Really depends on the receiver.. I’ve given Rose’s Pie & Pastry Bible a few times (one of my all-time faves), and Homegrown by Michel Nischan. Giving Good to the Grain to a friend this Christmas. One of my favorite alll-around cookbooks is still The New Basics by Rossi & Lukins; but maybe I’m just stuck in the 90’s. 🙂

  8. I love my ancient, original, 1950’s Betty Crocker Picture Cook Book. Every dessert that has ever come out of it is delicious! And incredibly rich and full of butter and sugar. And offered up in really tiny (i.e. reasonable) portions. Fabulous.

  9. I love Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything and How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. They are straightforward, have tons of recipes, and offer many variations on base recipes, which makes for fun experimentation.

  10. I just added The Yogurt Bible to my list of must have books. I am a complete and total yogurt addict. I can’t go a day without it.

  11. I’m a huge fan of Escoffier. What better cook can there be when this guy created the first! The best part of ‘The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery’ is how flexible the recipes are. They are the base recipes for everything else that exists. If you don’t own it, ask for it!

  12. I LOVE Love Soup! In fact, I am making the Black Bean and Butternut Squash for Christmas. (Make it if you haven’t yet…) It was a treasured gift from my brother-in-law last Christmas and I hope to give one to my sister too, eventually.

  13. I am giving my son the Cook’s Country cookbook and the Betty Crocker cookbook. Betty Crocker has simple recipes just right for his skill level and budget (college student) and Cook’s Country will help him learn about cooking and techniques so that more complicated recipes will be in his future.

  14. cookbook reviews! I love to give Joy of Cooking to new households, and Perfect Recipes for Having People Over to all kinds of folks.

    I stumbled on your blog this summer and made your Tomato Jam recipe, which I’m giving as gifts to lots of people to rave reviews.

    Diana

  15. I love to give the Pioneer Woman Cooks! It is wonderful! It reads like a book with stories and funny thins even in the recipes!!

  16. I like to give Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon for my friends that want to learn more about ‘real’ food. 🙂

  17. How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman – although I want to check out The Essential New York Times Cookbook, which may replace the former!

  18. My go to cookbook is the New Cookbook from Better Homes & Gardens. It’s where I learned the basics of cooking and has some very good recipes from which I have since learned to modify and make my own.

  19. My current favorite cookbook is The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook by Alissa Segersten & Tom Malterre. I have not completely converted but I enjoy incorporating plant based foods into my family’s diet. I have made many of their recipes with rave reviews from my kids, family and friends. I found your blog through their blog and first started canning after making Alissa’s Strawberry- Honey Jam. Now, my pantry is full of local and our garden produce to last all year!

  20. My idea of a perfect cookbook these days is this: Pure simple cooking : effortless meals every day, by Diana Henry; this is what my friends would get!

  21. I have far too many friends who are scared of cooking, and so for them I always give Bittman’s “The Minimalist Cooks Dinner” because it’s full of not-scary recipes that are generally fast, healthy, and delicious.

  22. My favorite book is Bread: A Baker’s Book of Techniques and Recipes by Jeffrey Hamelman. I’ve learned so much from it’s pages and turned out some amazing batches of bread!

  23. Any of Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa cookbooks, the pictures are beautiful and they’re fun books to flip through. Passionate Vegetarian by Crescent Dragonwagon for any of my veg. recipients.

  24. I know it’s cheesy and cliched, but it’s truly my reference guide and starting place for any classic or common food: The Joy of Cooking, although the two most current editions are missing my favorite recipe from my mother’s: Icebox Cookies…so I like to give the vintage editions if I can find them. My grandmother still has her (almost) original copy from the 50s(?).

  25. None of my friends enjoy cooking the way I do so crockpot cookbooks tend to win for gifts! however, I’d LOVE to make yogurt 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 And a cookbook for such a task would be most appreciated!

  26. I love “Love Soup”. And I love soup. Which is perfect. But I would also love some yogurt or food gift inspiration. Yum!

  27. Right now I am working out of Mark Bittman’s Food Matters Cookbook. My nephew is vegan and although I’ll probably never go vegan, I can go more veggies and whole grains and less meat. I am growing veggies I have never eaten before and the recipes are wonderful. It is on my list to give.

  28. Two to recommend! The cookbook that is so worn it’s falling apart on my shelf is Food to Live By by Myra Goodman; she and her husband Drew began Earthbound Organics farm years ago in the Carmel Valley and have made organics more available. The other recommendation is Maya Angelou’s Hallelujah! The Welcome Table; it’s got short autobiographical stories woven in for each grouping of recipes from her childhood and early life traveling – this is the one I go to for harder, really unique dishes. Thanks! Jeanette

  29. America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook 3 ring binder format. It covers, if not all, the basics, including very simple (how to boil or scramble eggs) to more complex dishes. It’s a great reference for basic cooking. For me, the Ultimate (steel-cut) Oatmeal recipe is worth the cost of the book alone. But, if you’re buying for a “plain, American food” eater, ATK’s Cook’s Country is a good also bet. Great recipe for Old fashioned pork roast.

    Quick Kitchen tips, another America’s Test Kitchen publication. Not a cookbook, per se; but it’s a unique and fun book for novice or experienced cooks.

    Barbeque Bible by Steven Raichlan. Mmmm…

    All About Braising by Molly Stevens. Simple, delicious & relaxed cooking. Not just pot roast.

    Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman. Structured like How to Cook Everything. Great basic vegetarian how-to, with lots of room for improvisation.

    Love Soup by Anna Thomas. I just got this one a few months ago. I’ve been using it just about every week. Great variety, organized seasonally. I can’t get enough of the Green soups!

    Food Matters Cookbook by Mark Bittman. It’s is not vegetarian, but emphasizes more plant foods (vegetables, fruits, whole grains, etc.), with smaller amounts of meat, dairy, eggs, etc. A healthy cookbook from someone who cares about how the food looks & tastes. What I’ve tried has been delicious.

  30. what an awesome list of books! my “to read” list just got a lot longer…

    my favorite cookbook to give as a gift is definitely “local flavors” by deborah madison. or really any book by deborah madison.

    love your blog! as a newbie canner, it’s really nice to have a place to turn to for information and encouragement!

  31. My favorite book to gift for a new cook, someone with a new place, or really whoever is Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything”. It is a great encyclopedia style cookbook and I love how he gives options for alternatives for the recipes too. I’ve used this book for exact recipes, ideas for switching out ingredients in recipes, and for just plain old inspiration. I gave the “How to Cook Everything Vegetarian” to my vegetarian friend, and she absolutely adores it. She has thanked me on several occasions for this one.
    I splurged on “Put ‘Em Up” for my birthday and love it. I’d love to gift this one to someone, but no one I know is really into food preservation… 🙁

    Thanks for all your great posts Marisa!! Merry Christmas!!

  32. My favorite cookbooks to give are the Moosewood cookbooks (any of them), because I grew up with them and they’re pretty much all great. Or, for a basic comprehensive reference cookbook, Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone is amazing.

  33. I have a couple of favorites to give as gifts:
    Mark Bittman, “How To Cook Everything” or “Food Matters” (depending on the recipient!)
    Julia Child, “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”
    Rombauer, “Joy of Cooking” (I like to get a vintage copy from the 60s or 70s)

  34. My husband loves soup, so I will have to pick that up. I’m running out of ideas! Gifts Cooks Love looks beautiful too. I’m also running out of ideas for sprucing up my canned gifts….although today I’m picking up some pretty origami paper and cutting snowflakes to adorn them. Hopefully they don’t suck!

  35. ” I <3 Macarons" is a wonderful book. I did a lot of research on techniques of Macarons but this book makes things simple and fun.

  36. I am usually not a cookbook person but more of a “surf the internet for the perfect recipe” person. I have a file in my favorites of recipes I have yet to try. But I did just recently get a cookbook from my Mom for my birthday and I love it! It is called “The Complete Book of Small-Batch Preserving” by Ellie Topp and Margaret Howard. I have canned several recipes already and since I have just recently started canning, this book is like my Bible at the moment (well that and the Blue Ball Book of course!)!

  37. For us cooking novices, I’ve had great success giving America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook 2001-2010. I’ve gotten rave reviews as feedback from every person I’ve given it to.

    • I love all of the America’s Test Kitchen Cookbooks, too. My husband was just lamenting about renting another DVR because the one we have is so full of America’s Test Kitchen episodes! The fact that they explain how/why things work makes it easier to “wing it” on my own recipes. I think it makes me a better cook all around!

  38. Ohhh…I made it that far alright! I LOVE cookbooks and have a small collection myself. And this post has given me a few more to add to my wishlist!! Thank you for taking the time to tell us about them…now I NEED DIY Delicious..lol!

    Um..hmmm…my favorite cookbook to give as a gift…? That’s a tough one…because I give according to the recipient’s interests. But if I had to choose one…Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. I think making your own bread is a good place to start…

    ps….I root for the underdog, too…;)

  39. Honestly, I’m a horrid cook! My hubby says otherwise, but I can recall countless meals where the dog enjoyed it with more gusto than the rest of the family. I’ve been trying to recreate Julia (Child) & have love leafing through her 1st ed of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

  40. My first cookbook was grandma’s collection of of clippings, scaps of paper tucked in a 40’s copy of Betty Crocker. Most loved..

  41. Hi Marisa,

    My favorite books to give are Simply in Season and Extending the Table. Simple, healthful food along with tidbits about the world hunger crisis, food and the ecosystem, etc.

    I made your spinach salad with broiled lemon the other day. Next I’m doing it on Christmas with Meyer lemons.

    Have a great holiday!

    Lauren

  42. How To Cook Everything- By Mark Bittman

    It’s great for the beginner (young newly wed) and it keeps it simple. Simple ingredients, simple recipes, simple. I’m liking that slow cooker book you reviewed!

  43. Preserving by Oded Scwartz… a book for thought for sure… amazing photos…. I am not sure I have ever used one of his recipes, but constantly pull this book out for ideas

  44. My friends either are cookbook people (and have their own collections) or not, so I don’t usually give trade cookbooks as gifts. If I give a cookbook, it’s one I made myself. Growing up, my sister and used to call each other “chowderhead”. So a few years ago, I made her a “Chowderhead of the Month” cookbook, with twelve “featured” chowder recipes, a handful of “bonus” recipes, and some history on the term “chowder”. A couple of years ago, I gave my then-fiance a portobella mushroom growing kit. He ended up with pounds and pounds of mushrooms, so it seemed only right to make him a Portobella cookbook. Even after he dumped the box out in the sideyard after the first year, the mushrooms still come back (3 years running now), so it’s a good thing he’s still got the cookbook!

  45. Everyone purchases cookbooks as gifts for me, but to be honest, I never do the same. My favorite & most treasured gift cookbook was one that my mother made for me from recipes that I remember so well from my youth. I loved all of the effort that went into it & the wisdom that came with it (like how essential it is to use the same cup to measure flour, water, & lard for her tortillas).

    Now I put together handwritten cookbooks for every wedding that I go to. We aren’t born knowing how to cook after all. I hand write out foolproof recipes for everything from pie crust to salad dressing & I include many blank pages for the new bride to fill up herself.

    The best part is, many of those ladies have told me that they liked the gift so much that they do the same for brides that they know!

  46. I know I am not the first one to say it, but I love gifting Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything.” We reference it constantly in my house, and the fact that many recipes come with a handful of suggested variations means that the possibilities are endless. It’s the kind of cookbook no home cook should be without. And there is something in it for cooks at every skill level!

  47. my favorite “cookbook” to give isn’t really a cookbook, per se – it’s a subscription to cooks illustrated. i’ve found so many good recipes there and know that they’re always great and describe the process – and it changes all the time. I’ve seen people converted with that magazine!

  48. I am a huge fan of The Pioneer Woman website. She invites us in to her world and it is an exciting and busy place to be. Ree Drummond (The PW), has a cookbook, “The Pioneer Woman Cooks”, which I love. She is a wonderful cook (among many other things) and illustrates the recipes with beautiful photos. Her sense of humor cracks me up. Check her out!

  49. For my kids when they moved out–I gave them each an old Betty Crocker cookbook. the essential how-to for basic cooking with many pictures of how stuff is supposed to look and even some finished products. I also copy my own collection of family favorites from my own collection and give that in a binder.

  50. My favorite cookbook of the moment reads like a novel and really makes you think about cooking and eating and growing food etc. Jam Today by Tod Davies. In the intro she says that this is less a cookbook and more an answer to the queen in Alice Through the Looking Glass, Jam Tomorrow, Jam Yesterday, never Jam Today. Ms. Davies says, Yes, Jam today, always always jam today.

    I make the green soup in Soup Love at least once a month. So good!

  51. I like to give the American Country Inn Bed & Breakfast cookbook. It’s a standby for beyond-the-pale waffles, especially.

  52. Anything by Deborah Madison is usually a winner, as are most Ina Garten books. Hoping someone will give me Ina’s new one… :-p

  53. Oooh. Either of those sounds really, really good!

    When giving a cookbook as a gift, it depends entirely upon who is getting it and their interests/abilities. Since most of us have everything (and then some! we will ever NEED, I do sometimes pick up local cookbooks when traveling for gift giving.

  54. I love to give ANYTHING “America’s Test Kitchen” – Those seem to be my “google” of the cook book world. I look in my ATK baking book and family cook book for everything from cinnamon rolls to pea soup!

  55. I think Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything” is a great gift for beginner cooks (and those of us with little time) because he simplifies difficult recipes while leaving in all the flavor.

  56. I love, love, love my subscription to Cooks Illustrated. Not only is it chock full of great information, the writing is so amazingly good. I read each issue cover to cover.

  57. PS. On a related note, The America’s Test Kitchen books are also awesome! I bought one for my husband before we got married and now it is one of our favorite cookbooks. Blueberry muffins to die for.

  58. When I was 19 my very first cookbook was “The Vegetarian Epicure”. The very first recipe I cooked from it was Minestrone alla Milanese. It’s still in my top 5 favorite soups today. And now Anna Thomas has “Love Soup”. That has got to go on the wish list! But when I give cookbooks it’s usually to the children of family and friends who are leaving the nest and I choose of all things the “Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook”. It’s full of solid, basic, well-tested, down to earth recipes in all categories that will get a person cooking for him/herself for the first time off and running. I’ve had few reports from recipients of failures and the need to phone out for pizza.

  59. I gave my daughter a Betty Crocker cookbook, which is a classic that I have, and my mother had as well. I also like to give the Martha Stewart Baking Handbook. There’s so much good info there for those of us who love to bake.

  60. I love cookbooks from groups of everyday people, recipes that have been handed down from loving relatives. One of my favorites to give is “Cooking is a LARC”. The “LARC” group aids in fund raising for children and adults with special needs. They do a wonderful job and have recipes that are asked about whenever I take a dish somewhere.

  61. Blue Ribbon Preserves, by Linda Amendt, accompanied by a couple of jars of goodies is my favorite. Then, a cook’s bible, the King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook is a close second.

  62. The cookbook that has been my bible for the past three years is “Vegetarian Classics” by Jeanne Lemlin, so I love to give it to people with comments in the margins about recipes that I love and any adjustments I usually make. Her recipes for granola, black bean dip, bulgur and greens, frittata, whole-grain waffles, miso soup, vinaigrette and butternut squash soup are all amazing, and that’s just scratching the surface.

  63. Although it’s in my top faves (especially when I was first starting out) it’s not my favorite of my collection, but one of my favorites to gift. I’ve given Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything to several people who were also just starting to delve into the world of cooking and they loved it, including my little brother.

  64. This year everyone is getting Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day!I love bread. And I want everyone I know to love bread! I love my copy to pieces and I have tried a ton of the recipes with great success!

  65. Great list! My favorite gift book is the Moosewood Daily Special. It’s soups, salads and a few breads. We use it several times a week and have yet to encounter a dud.

  66. I pick up any copy I find of Tassajara Cooking to give as gifts. It’s not just a how-to, it’s a great why-to’ that reminds me why I love to cook and how to approach it.

  67. There’s only one cookbook that I’ve gifted more than once, and that’s Food Network’s “How to Boil Water” (both times to some of the men in my life who were a bit kitchen-shy). I do think that special consideration needs to go into who the recipient will be before gifting a cookbook – that’s why I really like your Love Soup + soup pot wedding gift idea. But, narrowing it down to three cookbooks that I would happily give: Simply in Season (organized by season and produce availability), Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, and Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.

  68. I like giving food memoirs as gifts, either old Elizabeth David and MFK Fisher from the used book store, or newer ones like Jam Today and A Homemade Life

  69. An old roommate had this cookbook and it had EVERYTHING you could want from it. It would be an ultimate gift from me to someone who is learning or loves to cook, because it covers so many bases : The American Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. It’s in a binder, so you can remove pages, it’s sturdy… As I swoon over it, I lament and wonder why I don’t own it.

  70. *love soup* is so great! i was stunned at how much i like it, as i am a little bored by soup sometimes. but so worth it.

  71. The last cookbook I gave as a gift was Not Your Mother’s Slow Cooker. I too am a little obsessed with the slow cooker. 🙂

  72. Merry Christmas!
    My favorite go to party cookbook is “Charleston Party Receipts”, a compilation of the best party recipes from the Charleston Junior League. I just love party food!

  73. I like to give people whole grain cookbooks because too many people have only eaten white bread or maybe tried whole wheat but there’s so much more then wheat out there to eat!!

  74. Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving or Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (the plaid one) or The Joy of Cooking (which I think everyone should have).

  75. Boy, I’d love either of these! I like to give an interesting, older (50’s I think originally) cookbook called The Encyclopedia of American Cooking. It was put together by Home Ec teachers and is(was?) sold by The Southwestern Company. They are the kids selling educational books door to door (not magazines) that work in the summer. The cookbook is organized alphabetically by ingredient and is huge. Lots of the recipes are very old school, but there are some gems in there and who doesn’t love having like 120 recipes for chicken? Seriously it is great when I get a glut of something and have no idea what else to do with it…the EAC will have an idea!

    Heather

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