Home-cooked meals, baked goods, and snacks save money, allow greater control over ingredients, reduce food waste, and eliminate the need for take-out packaging. Make cooking easier and more fun with the gift of a cookbook - for a loved one or for yourself! Here are some of my favorites.
This is my latest cookbook find and I am really enjoying it. The premise is that today's home cook needs to be able to put a meal on the table quickly using whatever is in the fridge (and without making a special trip to the grocery store for the one or two ingredients you forgot or ran out of). The book is essentially a set of cooking techniques and formulas (for soups, stews, sauteed meat, stir-fries, egg dishes, and so on) that you can easily memorize and customize using whatever protein, starch, or produce you have on hand. Instead of generating a shopping list to go with your meal plan, you can create meals each week using whatever looks good at the farmer's market.
Six O'Clock Scramble Cookbooks
The Six O'Clock Scramble cookbooks by Aviva Goldfarb are full of family-friendly, fairly simple, fast and forgiving recipes made with ingredients that are easy to find. They also include a fair share of meatless recipes. Many of Six O'Clock Scramble's recipes have entered my regular rotation. Read my full reviews of these two cookbooks (including sample recipes) here and here.
Cook's Illustrated/ America's Test Kitchen junkie. I have found their recipes to be highly reliable. If you are only going to own one of their cookbooks, the Family Cookbook is the one to get. I also really like The Best 30-Minute Recipe.
Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day
For the bread lover in your life, consider this cookbook which makes homemade bread doable for even the busiest of folks. I often have dough in my fridge which can quickly be made into a boule, baguette, pizza crust or naan. Three other great cookbooks in the same vein: Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day: 100 New Recipes Featuring Whole Grains, Fruits, Vegetables, and Gluten-Free Ingredients (when my GF sister lived with me, I regularly baked gluten-free bread for her using the recipe in this book); Peter Reinhart's Artisan Bread Every Day; and My Bread: The Revolutionary No-Work, No-Knead Method.
The Joy of Cooking
A cookbook classic. An indispensible reference guide as well as source of hundreds of traditional and contemporary recipes.
Click here to read the complete Green Holidays series.