My Favorite Food Books

Happy Monday, everyone! Right now, all of my books are stashed away in storage somewhere in rural Washington until we find an apartment. I’ve been missing them a lot lately, so I thought I would share a few of my favorites with you.

Tell me your favorite food books so I can add to my collection!

1. The Everyday Cookbook

The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters. If I had to choose one book that most closely aligns to my cooking style, this would be it. This no-frills book covers the basics of a well-stocked kitchen, everyday techniques and tips, and simple recipes that rarely include exact measurements. I love that it encourages people to think holistically about cooking, rather than mindlessly following a recipe. Alice Waters at her finest, in my opinion!

2. The Memoir

A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg. There are a lot of crappy memoirs out there about food. This is not one of them. A Homemade Life is a thoughtful, beautifully-written memoir that follows the life of Molly Wizenberg, a food blogger and now restaurant owner. Every food lover will be able to relate to her love of cooking and honest, heartfelt writing. If you are ever in Seattle, you absolutely must try Delancey, the subject of her next book.

3. The Reference

On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee. I got this book for Christmas, and I’m slowly but surely plowing my way through. This book provides fascinating context to the most basic cooking questions (e.g. why does an egg solidify when exposed to heat?) It explains the history and science behind almost every element of food and cooking. On Food and Cooking was originally published the year I was born, and is more relevant than ever in 2012. I am amazed at how much I’ve learned from this book, and I imagine that it’s required reading for every culinary school in America.

4. The Special Occasion Cookbook

Ad Hoc at Home by Thomas Keller. I’m usually not a fan of recipes that have a zillion steps, but I make a special exception for Thomas Keller. Ad Hoc at Home is a very special cookbook, full of intricate recipes, helpful tips, and absolutely beautiful photos. This is the cookbook you bust out when you have people to impress and a whole day to prepare.

5. The Picture Book

Food Rules by Michael Pollan, illustrated by Maira Kalman. If you follow my blog, you probably already know that I’m in love with Maira Kalman’s artwork. Her beautiful work melds so well with Pollan’s short tips and rules about eating sustainably. This short but sweet book makes a great gift or small coffee table book.