Thursday, January 20, 2011

Confessions of a Cook Book Junkie part II

Well it Thursday Thirteen time again! Yay.

I am cook book obsessed. I can not stop collecting them! Even if I never use them (Nigella Fresh). I never buy them new but score them at used book stores, yard sales, flea markets, given to me, and once in an abandoned barn. That one is my favorite and my main go to when I must find out how to do something. So, these are 13 of my random favorite book books .

1) Recipes from the Trustees House Daily Fare - We Make You Kindly Welcome! With a name like that it better be good. This is the thin little cook book that could that I wrote about yesterday from Shakertown, as us locals call Shaker Village at Pleasant Hill. Filled with the most simple basic food stuff that is out of this world. Of course they have the advantage of growing most the vegetables on the land outside the Side Porch Dining Room! Some additional favorites are the Peanut Butter cookies (I can make these in my sleep! They are so good and so easy) and candied baby carrots.

2) The Complete Book of Oriental Cooking by Myra Waldo. I bought this cookbook when I was playing house a long long time ago. I had no idea how to cook but I knew I loved Chinese food. This is one of those little paperbacks that cost $1.75. That is how long ago and how old this little beauty truly is. I have made the fried rice recipe forever since discovering it among the different ethnic culinary chapters. When Bridget was a child and would bring home her school age friends they would beg me to whip this up for them! Imagine that!

3) What's Cooking In Kentucky - This is one of those spiral cookbooks that is put out yearly by the Ladies in the "group". Be it a church or a Junior League, the pages are filled with family secret recipes by Mrs. Ralph Moonglow (I'm richer than you) and Miss Edwina Cooter (old maid) and many other ladies who's identities are always attached to their husband or lack of one. This particular book was given to me by the family of a guy I was dating way back when. I will be the first to admit I knew nothing about cooking. My Mom was a scholar not interested in spending much time in the kitchen. Her culinary skills were limited to the Home Economics class she took during the 1940's. I have an idea she struggled with that elective. I used the banana bread recipe in this book for years and years. It took a long time to find a better one.

4) To Market To Market - The Junior League of Owensboro, Ky Inc. I love the graphics of this cook book! I can't remember if I have actually used a recipe from this collection of family favorites, but I always enjoy the looking at the little piggies.

5) The Green Thumb Preserving Guide - Another jewel from the 1970's when I dove head first into teaching myself how to cook. For some reason I fancied myself as some sort of live off the land hippie back then. I really thought I would grow a garden and can my own food. What a joke! But the book is jam packed with marvelous recipes.

6) Union Square Cafe Cook Book - I believe I found this book on the shelves of the Goodwill on Ft. Campbell Blvd. I was lucky to nab this fantastic culinary masterpiece! The Ribollia Soup??? To die for! I made it, after spending about $100 on the ingredients, because everything was required to be FRESH, and almost ate the entire huge pot at one sitting! Joe even said "Hmmmm pretty good."

7) Keep it Simple - Ruth Brent 1972. Another Goodwill find that I picked up because I could not resist the picture of Ms. Brent and her beehive hair do on the back cover.

8) Farm Journal County Cookbook - The banana bread in this book is made with a cup of crushed up bran flakes. OMG. It was so delicious and dark that it blew my mind.

9) Our Daily Bread - Stella Standard - I taught myself how to make pancakes from this cook book along with yet another banana bread recipe! The cinnamon yeast rolls I tried for the first time, once again this is a 1970's attempt at domesticating myself, were good. I have never been successful at getting dough to rise. This is a common topic of conversation I have with anyone who tells me they bake bread. Even my BIL is good at making dough rise! Putting a pan of hot water in the oven under the bowl. I suck at this.

10) The Whole Earth Cook Book - I have a large collection from the 1970's - lol.

11) Farmhouse Cook Book - Susan Herman Loomis - This is one of those floppy big paper backs that has a primitive American painting theme on the front cover. I am a sucker for this type of marketing ploy. This lady traveled the US in search of the best family farm recipes. She found them by pulling up at some town square rolling down the window and asking those old codgers sitting on the Court House benches "who is the best cook in town?". It's a wonderful cook book filled with scrumptious ingredients and mouth watering concoctions. Some of my fav's have been the Herbed Summer Veggies - who knew a mess of fresh vegetables all mixed up together could be THE BOMB. Oh yea, fresh scrape off the cob corn put it over the top. Winner winner chicken dinner. And the granola recipe? Oh baby.

12) Lunch Upon a Time - Simple favorites from the Strawberry Patch. The Strawberry Patch was a restaurant once upon a time in fair Louisville. This little bitty home made book with its red cover and green binding complete with staples has a simple but satisfying Hot Brown tutorial that no one can mess up. Not even me. We licked the plates if I remember correctly. Then I could do it from memory!

13) Prudence Penny -Binding of the American Woman Cook Book San Francisco -
This is the Mac Daddy of my collection. This is the one that I found in an abandoned barn on a piece of property we were renting long ago in a far away land in another life time. Everything I have actually learned about cooking and preparing meals is in this book, spelled out for the dumbest of the culinary challenged. Want to know how to cook corn on the cob? It's in there. Want to know how to chop up a whole chicken? It's in there? The perfect pie crust? It's in there. This cook book even takes the time to tell you the do's and dont's, the why's and why not' other words, you will have to remove this old green cracked and aged 1954 cook book out of my clenched hands if you ever try to even borrow it! It's my TOP SECRET to success as a cook. Some may argue that point, some may not. That is if they know what's good for them.

Thank you Thursday 13 for anther hour whiled away and pleasantly happy doing so.


Pearl said...

ah, cookbooks are fun. I weeded my collection down a few years ago but they creep back. my favorite odd one is made from an RV park in Florida in the 70s.

Xakara said...

We looked up all our recipes online for year but I finally gave in and bought my first cookbooks this past holiday. They were all on clearnace sale and quite lovely places to start.

My personal favorite is the Betty Crocker Baking for Today. We also got Dinner on a Dime, Ingrid Hoffman's Simply Delicisoso, Betty Crocker's 4 ingrediant dinners and 2008 Southern Living Annual Recipes. If these work out I'm sure an obsession is on it's way. :)

Happy TT,

13 Comforts