Wednesday, September 29, 2010

New cookbooks for a new kitchen

I expected to jump right back into cooking. Like a hog to mud. After all, I was beyond happy to get a working kitchen back. And maybe some people do. Maybe for them, that backlog of uncooked recipes builds pressure, and they're relieved to finally cook again if only to release some of that pent-up steam.

Not me.

My pantry was bare. My mind was barren of any and all inspiration. I browsed my usual haunts...allrecipes and epicurious and cooking blogs. Nothing. It was as if cooking had become a foreign language.

So, in desperation, I turned to these. New cookbooks. I'd wanted to buy them for some time, but put it off, knowing that a kitchen reno was around the corner. I didn't need anything more to put into storage, thank you. But now, maybe new cookbooks would give exactly the inspiration I needed.

Last night, I devoured Mark Bittman's Kitchen Express, and compiled a very long grocery list. It included some items I'd never bought before. Firm tofu and escarole and anchovies. Nothing expensive. Actually, nothing that exotic. Just things that had, for whatever reason, never made it onto my family's menu before.

I'm relieved to have escaped the cooking doldrums and excited about cooking out of these books. Inspired, even. And maybe...just children will actually eat escarole and anchovies.

P.S. If you're ever in the area, New England Mobile Book Fair in Newton has a phenomenal selection of books, including an extensive cookbook section. I could browse in their remainders section (not just aisle...its own section of an enormous building) for hours. They offer 20% off all hardbacks and paperbacks. More importantly, they give 40% off over 50 current cookbook bestsellers. An excellent deal for your wallet and your kitchen.


  1. i love your blog. the marcella hazan cookbook is my bible. i use her techniques over and over again and my cookbook is spattered and well-loved.

  2. Thanks! I've only had the opportunity to make a couple of recipes so far, but I can't wait to make my copy spattered and well-loved. Do you have a fave recipe to recommend?


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