Culinate

Cookbooks for celebrating

It’s gifting time

By
December 6, 2012

‘Tis the season for food writers to suggest cookbook gifts, drawn from the year’s publications. Here’s a roundup.

Sweet treats for the holidays.

On Epicurious, Esther Sung offered a top-10 list for 2012’s crop of cookery tomes, including Diane Morgan’s Roots and Mindy Fox’s Salads: Beyond the Bowl. Blogger Cheryl Sternman Rule plumped for Lynne Sampson Curry’s Pure Beef and Marisa McClellan’s Food in Jars, among others.

Leite's Culinaria picked books by the well-known likes of Michael Ruhlman, Jim Lahey, and Alice Medrich, while Serious Eats championed Andrea Nguyen, Deb Perelman, and Naomi Duguid.

On National Public Radio's website, T. Susan Chang advocated for books by Yotam Ottolenghi, Tom Douglas, and the Canal House team of Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer. (On her own blog, meanwhile, Chang included a list of other books to buy by category, such as Martha Holmberg’s Crêpes just for its basic crêpes recipe.)

The Washington Post put together a cookbook slideshow, including books by Maricel Presilla, Nancy Baggett, Ina Garten, Nick Malgieri, and Kim O'Donnel.

Is this book on your gift list?

And in the New York Times, former restaurant critic William Grimes offered not one but two lists of his faves from the year nearly ended: a short list and a longer one, including Julie Richardson’s Vintage Cakes.

Nobody so far, alas, has mentioned the parody cookbook Fifty Shades of Chicken, with its cover featuring a tightly trussed chicken shot in perfect Gourmet magazine style.

But as Grimes noted, “If the recipe names in Richardson’s book — like ‘maple pecan chiffon cake with brown butter icing’ — seem seductive, the photographs are downright pornographic. Forget ‘Fifty Shades of Grey.’ This is the year’s sexiest book.”