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Interesting and informative culinary books

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hello my lovely kitchen family, 

       I am looking for a list of great books to check out, in particular ones that are informative as well as interesting if possible. No topic in particular, just have this desire to expand my knowledge in the kitchen on a consistent and regular basis. I have two my most recent awesome blossom sous chef advised me to check out they are the flavor bible, and salt A world history. Thanks fam :)

post #2 of 7

Dear Gypsy0714,


Very happy to know you've discovered our book The Flavor Bible.  In our book Becoming a Chef (1995; 1st ed), we interviewed 60+ of America's leading chefs (e.g., Rick Bayless, Daniel Boulud, Emeril Lagasse, Patrick O'Connell, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Alice Waters, et al) on the Top 20 books they recommended to aspiring chefs.  Here's their Top 10 list of recommended reading:

- Escoffier's Le Guide Culinaire


- Larousse Gastronomique


- Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking


- Joy of Cooking


- Elizabeth David Classics


- James Beard's American Cookery


- Alice Waters' Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook.


- Paula Wolfert's books


- Richard Olney's Simple French Food


- Craig Claiborne's New York Times Cookbook


Delicious wishes,
Karen & Andrew

post #3 of 7

Karen and Andrew make some great recommendations there are a few more I would add to that list. 


- The whole beast by Fergus Henderson


- On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee


- The French Laundry by Thomas Keller


- Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn


- The Professional Chef by the CIA


hope this helps

post #4 of 7
Karen and Andrew are great. Great list additions by chefnites!

I'll add;
post #5 of 7

Some really good books suggested here! In my humble opinion, if you were to choose just one, go with McGee; On Food And Cooking. The latest version. That book got me into my first Michelin Star restaurant, 11 years ago. It changed my life, and I should think it would do the same for anyone else that read it too!

post #6 of 7

So many great suggestions here. Flavor Bible, Ratio, On Food and Cooking, Joy of Cooking are my building block books. But, I'm a home cook, not a chef.


Along the lines of Paula Wolfert, who takes an anthropological approach to cuisines around the Mediterranean, there are Diana Kennedy's books on Mexican cuisines, Marcella Hazan's books on Italian cooking, Madhur Jaffrey's books on Indian food, & Claudia Rodin's New Book of Middle Eastern Food.I have a longer list of these authors who take that approach, but those are the authors I refer to most for ethnic cuisines.


For books on basic techniques, I like James Peterson's books and Anne Willan's La Varenne Practique.


For pure reading pleasure on the many ways food nourishes us and brings us joy, M.F.K. Fisher's The Art of Eating is a compilation of her food writing. I am devastated that she seems to have gone out of fashion.


The next one on my acquisition list is Judy Rodgers' Zuni Cafe Cookbook.

post #7 of 7

I Hear America Cooking by Betty Fussell is a great book that is broken into regional cuisines.  

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