October 1st marked the start of National Cookbook Month. Like many, I am an avid cookbook collector. Online articles, torn out pages from magazines, snapshots on my phone of recipes I find leafing through a magazine at a doctor’s office. I’m drowning in a sea of measurements, ingredients and untested recipes.
Certainly there are many of you that are in the same predicament. The collection continues to grow every time a new book comes out on the market or I make a visit to a thrift shop and spy an oldie but goodie on the shelf. I. Just. Can’t. Stop.
So what do you do when you have oodles of books and recipes, happen to have a business that revolves around food and even a blog to write about food with? Well, you start the Cookbook Chronicles.
Cookbook Chronicles is my way of making use of the shelves and piles of cookbooks collected over the years (and let’s be honest, to validate adding more to the collection).
We’ll test out recipes from various cookbooks, newspaper clippings or online sites and see if they live up to the hype. After all, we’ve all been through the experience of seeing a beautiful photo of a well staged dish only to discover that it doesn’t quite match up to your attempt at the recipe.
Eventually, I hope to make my way through at least one recipe from every book. There will be successes and there will be failures. I’ll share a few of my “go to’s” and take you on my journey of discovering new ones.
Now, I should warn you, not all my books are from this decade. They may not even be from this century. There is a special spot in my cooking library for vintage recipes and books. I love browsing through ingredients and methods of cooking that are no longer in use today.
A few of my favourites include a collection of recipes by Vincent and Mary Price (yes…that Vincent Price!), a 1936 Fannie Farmer Boston School of Cooking (which has a recipe for a “Mock Turtle Soup” that lists 1 calf’s head as the first ingredient) and a first edition Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
The recipes we choose may not be of a “current” palate but nonetheless, they are worth a try! Cooking is an adventure and whether you succeed or fail it’s always fun to try!
As we begin our foray into the Cookbook Chronicles I hope you will join us and share your own recipes and adventures.