My Favorite Cookbooks!

So, one of the questions I get a lot is what my favorite cookbook is. It’s a question that requires a loooonnngggg involved answer, which is one of the reasons I was so delighted when Booklist magazine asked me if I would write an article on this very topic. It involved a long, soul-searching trip through my jam-packed kitchen bookcase, and an agonizing decision about which cookbooks to write about, but at the end of the day there were four favorites that ended up on the top of my my list.

The first was my very first cookbook, THE POOH COOK BOOK. It’s out of print, but trust me when I say it is completely charming. Not especially practical, but adorable.  Next was THE SILVER PALATE COOKBOOK,which contains my favorite pasta recipe of all time, for which you need the following things:

 Pasta with Brie and Tomatoes. Make it as soon as you can!

Next is what I call my “desert island” cookbook…the one I would want if I was stranded on a desert island. This desert island contains a fully decked out kitchen and a great supermarket, just so you know. Anyway, that one is THE NEW BEST RECIPE from Cooks Illustrated, from which I have made this, over and over again…

Cooks Illustrated’s The Best Beef Stew.  Yes it is.

And last but not least, my new favorite, which is THE PIONEER WOMAN COOKS. This gem of a cookbook finally ended my lifelong search for a decent chicken fried steak recipe, and for that the Southern husband will be eternally grateful.

However, for me cookbooks are about SO much more than recipes, and that is why I am so grateful to the Booklist folks for giving me the chance to say my piece about them. If you would like to read about my life-long love affair with these amazing books, click the link below…

My Life Is An Open Cookbook!

And in the meantime, I should let you know that I am already two recipes into the new FAT WITCH BAKERY COOKBOOK…and I think I am hooked again….so stay tuned to this channel!


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  1. Linda in New Mexico says

    Not only will I stay tuned…I will take this break to launder my drool bib that I wear when I read your blog. You have some of the most fun and most interesting recipes. Thanks ever so. The Olde Bagg

  2. Joanne says

    Being a serious addict I completely get what you mean when you say a cookbook is not just the recipes inside. it's your interaction with them, it's the story behind them, it's the whole picture. I can't wait to hear what you think about Fat Witch. I've heard good things.

  3. EcoGrrl says

    if you haven't seen it yet, the Silver Spoon is the Italian version of the Joy of Cooking. 1200 pages and freakin' awesome. never have i bought a cookbook and had every.single.recipe be amazing – and take only a few ingredients!

  4. Tracey says

    Ooooh, I love the Pooh Cook Book. It was my first as well, and I still have it in my collection. Think I'll go make some Popovers for Piglet!

  5. jabreb says

    This has to be the "bestest" blog I've ever read – your article was riveting and represented all of us cookbook collectors who, in addition to cooking, also just love to read them as novels. For your Southern husband, you might want to check out one of my favorite cookbooks, Back To The Table, by Art Smith.

  6. squirrelbread says

    There are barely words to describe how incredible Silver Palate's Pasta with Brie and Tomatoes is. It's a coincidence that I came and read this, because we bought some oozy goat cheese to use in this recipe in place of Brie!

    I was reading the Fat Witch Bakery Cookbook's preview on the other day and saw a recipe for Hermit Bars. I've never heard of anything like them — have you made them yet??


  7. ruthhill74 says

    Oh, thanks for sharing! I wish I could find the Pooh Cookbook. It does sound charming. But I love the Pioneer Woman cookbook! I am not familiar with the Fat Witch Bakery Cookbook, but it ought to be interesting. Blessings!

  8. Kate Morgan Jackson says

    I love it that so many of my blog friends feel the same way I do about cookbooks (and that so many of you love Pooh!!). About the FWB Hermit Bars – not yet but they are definitely on my to-do list!!

  9. Marisa Midori says

    I must have checked the Pooh Cookbook out of my school library for months in a row when I was in elementary school! I hand-copied out all of the recipes.

    And that beef stew looks luscious (which is an adjective that I don't think I've ever used to describe beef stew before)

  10. Lydia says

    Hi katie, nice blog & good post. overall You have beautifully maintained it, you must submit your site for free in this website which really helps to increase your traffic. hope u have a wonderful day & awaiting for more new post. Keep Blogging!


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