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Sunday, August 20, 2006
Chili Prawn linguine and vintage cookbooks

This summer, it seems that I cook more than I can reasonably eat and write about.
But this matter fact has shown me something: food and cooking hold a major place in my life.
I can't spend a day without:
1) cooking
2) thinking of interesting food / combination / recipe
3) buying things related to food (read: cookbooks, plates, placemats...)

However something quite strange is happening. I am literally bored of cookbooks. It seems I can't find one that really stands out.
For example, I love the design of Apples for Jam, but do I really need another recipe for beef pasta? I know I'll end buying this book because Tessa Kiros is such a great writer and inspiration, but what a strange feeling!
I tend to lean towards pastry chef cookbooks – such as my new favourite PH10.

Though, when I cook for myself I like to keep it simple and fresh. I love clean Asian flavours: lemongrass, soy sauce, coriander are high among my everyday favourites.
This was the simple comfort dish that I made at least once - if not twice - a week during the last few weeks.
It's pretty straightforward (as most of Bill Granger's recipes) but has that wow-factor that makes everyone sited at the table go wild.
I like to replace the linguine by egg-noodles, which adds a nice touch.

Anyway, I'd love to hear how you feel about recent cookbooks? What are your favourites and why?
Just a little parenthèse [parenthesis]: I'd like to buy some vintage cookbooks but I don't know where to start. So any suggestions would be appreciated!

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13 sweets:
Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

It's not vintage but I highly recommend "The Cooks Book", it's the best cookbook I have bought in years and totally modern and classic all at the same time.

20 August, 2006 23:35 

Blogger Zarah Maria said something sweet:

I so know what you're saying Fanny! I bought Apples for Jam, knowing that the recipes might not jump out at me, but I just love her writing, so I couldn't help myself. Regarding new cookbooks: I keep adding to my Amazon wishlist, but none of the ones that I add has had me yearning to actually buy them, and buy them NOW. That said, I've been looking at cookbooks on specific cuisines lately, because a lot of the books I already have a more of the: this is what I'd cook for dinner in a flash-sort. I need more classics in my library - something on Thai, Indian, Mexican... No specific titles, but just throwing some inspiration your way!:-)

21 August, 2006 01:28 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

Morrocan Modern, by Hassan M'souli, is a treat. I just picked up a second hand copy of Mustards, a Napa Valley Grill, and made a delicious succotash in that, with white corn, haricots verts, fava beans and some other nibbles thrown in. I agree, great ones are few and far between, and many of them more art books than recipe books, but that's ok too.

Terrific photos; I'm curious, what camera do you use?

21 August, 2006 05:00 

Blogger Alhya said something sweet:

je ne peux te conseiller de merveilleux livres de cuisine, n'en ayant pas moi même, mais je tenais à te dire que je passe régulièrement sur ton blog et que j'aime beaucoup les associations que tu réalises: ici, ce plat de linguine me donne l'eau à la bouche, pourtant il est encore tôt!!

21 August, 2006 09:33 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

Very nice dish Fanny! Love the simplicty of fresh ingredients that make the best meals!
Yes the cookbooks dilemna. I bought a new one yesterday, but have to say that what attracts me a lot these days in cookbooks is pictures. I have so many "general cooking" cookbooks. I love Vurdock collection with titles such as Bowl Food. Great ideas for simple nice meals, and the format of the book is great! Just an idea....

21 August, 2006 15:39 

Blogger Dianka said something sweet:

Yum, this dish looks excellent! I know what you mean about getting rather bored with cookbooks, I've been looking for a new one too!

21 August, 2006 21:51 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

This looks like something i will get hooked on from the very first bite. I love the ingredients put together! The prawns looks succulent. I needn't say this but the photos are stunning!!! Clean, fresh, and delicious to look at.

Falling Cloudberries has all that vintage look and feel for me. I love it and would highly recommend it. It's written as a food memoire by Tessa Kiros. I've only tried making a pistachio ice cream from it which just reminds me, i have bookmarked quite a few other recipes which i should start making soon :)

22 August, 2006 12:27 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

I've just browsed through your cookbook collection and saw Falling Cloudberries already on it - doh! :)

I must get that one with cupcakes on the cover!

22 August, 2006 12:31 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

some essential vintage books to own:
anything by MFK Fisher, Andries de Groot or Bert Greene are essentials.

if you want to learn more about American cooking, Clementine Paddleford's How America Eats.

for variety, Maxime de la Falaiss'e Food In Vogue.

The Perfect Hostess Cookbook by Mildred O. Knopf is a wonderful glimpse back in time as is To The Queen's Taste by Hellen Train Hilles.

I collect vintage cookbooks and also write an occasional editorial feature on them on my blog, so feel free to contact me directly if you have any further questions or need recommendations as to where to shop for them

22 August, 2006 17:55 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

Just two cookbooks I haven't seen on your list and are absolutely great: 1) Nigel Slater's The Kitchen Diaries, 2) Silver Spoon.

22 August, 2006 20:28 

Blogger Deb said something sweet:

One of my absolutely favorite cookbooks is Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. Dinner tonight: Pan-broiled thin beef steaks with tomatoes & olives. YUM!!!!! simple & few are the ingredients, ALWAYS delish!

Love your blog!

23 August, 2006 04:00 

Anonymous Anonymous said something sweet:

Fanny, I could eat this pasta every day :)

23 August, 2006 18:51 

Blogger *fanny* said something sweet:

Thanks to all of you for the great suggestions. I all wrote it down on my Moleskine and will have a look in Borders or Foyle tomorrow.

26 August, 2006 16:53 

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