30 Days of Gratitude: Day 11 - Cookbooks & Recipes

Cookbooks have been around for quite a while, true. For some painful examples, check out Awful Library Books' "You Ate What?" category. I'm not one to whom cooking comes naturally. I have to have look stuff up, measure it carefully, time everything. Sometimes it doesn't work out, but I love the ability to go to a library and figure stuff out.

My staple and what got me through my first year of cooking for myself was definitely Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook. This has a whole slew of simple recipes, staples, tips, an illustrated glossary, easy to use charts and a fine index. I'd recommend this (particularly the binder version, if they still have those) to any first time cook.

Another book that tells you incredible amounts of information about food is Harold McGee's On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen. Goodness. It's the best. I don't normally buy books, but this is one that every cooking household should have on hand. It tells you how to tell if an egg is still good or not. How hot meat should be. It explains why certain things happen to certain foods at certain temperatures. This blathering paragraph gives this book absolutely no justice. Check it out for yourself and discover a huge world of food science. McGee was the first to put it all together and his book still reigns. I also recommend this NPR interview with Howard McGee. I'd love to hang out with this guy.

I've been trying to track cookbooks that I like on the ole Great Cookbooks Pinterest board.

I am grateful for not only cookbooks, but excellent recipe websites, like Epicurious, Foodnetwork.com, Taste of Home and Allrecipes.com. Plus, there are some great food blogs out there, like 365 Days of Slow Cooking, e is for eat and Get Dinner on the Table. It's great to have so many resources for so many different types of food.

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