Cookbooks from my Kitchen

May of you know that I work for a food magazine. I’m a magazine junkie. I subscribe to numerous magazines and most of them are about food, cooking or gardening. I’m also a cookbook junkie. I read cookbooks like most people would read a novel.

My mother gave me The Joy of Cooking when I was a teenager. It’s now my favorite cookbook, again. It’s been burnt, splashed on, dogeared and read cover to cover. It once was my mother’s cookbook and I hope to pass it on to our daughter one day.

Cookbooks come and go, in and out of fashion and style. Currently I’m reading PIE by Ken Haedrich and all of it’s 640 pages of delicious photos and recipes.

What cookbooks do you love? Do you ever share them? Do you stick to the recipe or improvise? I wanna know and I wanna talk cookbooks with you.


14 thoughts on “Cookbooks from my Kitchen

  1. I read cookbooks like novels too. I rarely cook from one though, unless I’m trying something very unfamiliar. either a food or style. And always baking. I have my grandmother’s handwritten cookbook all falling apart in a bag. She was an extraordinary baker. I had to part with a lot of cookbooks when we moved here. Most went to good friends. I brought quite a few here, including Joy. Mine is new, a dog chewed the old one to useless. I’m sure it tasted good.

    • Thanks for sharing Eli. We should do a cookbook exchange one day or better yet we should cook together one day. We could double a recipe so there is enough for both of our families to share.

      • I did save some of my regional and Junior League cookbooks. Maybe we could have a potluck with all these great commenters. Either an old favorite recipe or be daring a “try something completely different from a cookbook you own.”

  2. While house/dog sitting for you last winter, I have to say it was really exciting to cook in your kitchen! So well-appointed (in a really practical, food-loving kind of way), and comfortable! Wish I could say I read cookbooks… I tend to rely heavily on the Epicurious app on my iPhone. :)

    • Sara.
      I recently unpacked a few cases of cookbooks and rotated them. Like I do with my artwork. Keeps things fresh. My kitchen is not fancy in fact it pretty dated with no bells & whistles but it’s the cook that makes a meal not the kitchen equipment.

      On Sunday, I had the pleasure of supporting PBS Hawaii with a small gathering at a private home in Wailuku Heights. Chef Martin Yan was there and did a cooking demo. I just unpacked two of his cookbooks. Chinese food anyone?

  3. I am always drawn to cookbooks but here’s the kicker, I rarely cook. I like to “read” cookbooks as you do and I think they represent so much possibility and passion to me. Cooking is another form of art. Although I don’t create, I definitely enjoy the creations of others. I am currently perusing “How to Cook Everything, the basics”. “The Sriracha Cookbook” and “Antojitos”. I’m also eyeing Candace Kumai’s recent publication. The cookbooks I cook from the most have been your local, home made, self-bound kine. HGEA’s fundraiser cookbook, my friend Masae’s family’s Christmas gift cookbook and my slow cooker book (whoever invented the slow cooker is a genius). I do find myself though going to the internet more and more and doing my own thing after reading some basic recipes for the ingredients in question. But….I still love looking at cookbooks.

  4. Tania.
    Maybe we should get a bottle of wine and cook together. Make something simple and delicious. Thinking about inviting a few people to Kupu Maui Test Kitchen.

    Hmmm, thinking about the possibilities. Mahalo for sharing.

  5. I am not a “cooker.” I do get wild hairs occasionally and bake, I like baking…but I’m always counting calories now, so kitchen time is minimal. If you can believe it, I have one cookbook–Fannie Farmer, giving to me by mother in law as a wedding gift. Boy, she was optimistic.
    Turns out I have other talents. But I AM a food appreciator, gardener, and lover of all things healthy and delicious.

  6. Dania, I love to read cookbooks for inspiration but rarely follow them unless it’s baking… (specific measurements). My collection includes antique Hawaiian cookbooks, Martha Stewart and I’m currently reading “Baking with Julia” (Julia Child). One of my favorites is the Maui Home Ladies Cookbook a collection of many Maui women. Would love to join you in the test kitchen.

  7. I still like cookbooks too, even though I could probably find equivalent recipes on the net. I enjoy pics and photos and the story behind the recipes. Some cookbooks are almost sinful and decadent, the equivalent of “foodie porn.”

  8. The Lily Wallace New American Cook Book (1946) is my favorite cookbook because it belonged to my mom. In it are cut-out recipes from newspapers, recipe handouts, notes about certain recipes in my mom’s handwriting, and even a recipe in my shaky handwriting that I must have brought home to her, for “Hum Lum”.

    Thanks for jogging my memory about cookbooks, Dania!

  9. I tend to improvise a lot, but like cookbooks. Lately I’ve started using the online versions I readily find on Pinterest! I even improvise, add and subtract things from my dog food cookbook I authored. But then again…. that’s how I was able to write it. I’ve made them all and I’ll come up with new recipes with my substitute ingredients!

  10. You would enjoy reading Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child by Bob Spitz, not a cookbook but a wonderful read of the life of Julia Child and how she wrote an amazing cookbook that changed the way cookbooks where written.

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