HI! I am a home cook. I just bought America's Test Kitchen Cookbook 2001-2016. It is a great resource. I just saw that the Cook's Illustrated Cookbook is on sale for $24 and I was wondering if the recipe's overlap? Thoughts on if I need this second book too? How would you rate the Cook's cookbooks?
ATK vs Cooks's Illustrated Cookbooks
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There is quite a bit of overlap between ATK recipes and the CI cookbook. I have the CI cookbook and I've bought or looked at a few ATK subject-specific cookbooks over the past couple of years. I have found many repeat recipes between the various subject-specific cookbooks as well. (Chicken, One-Dish, etc.) I think I have the white chili recipe in 3 different books. It's a great recipe but I don't need it 3 times. Sometimes there are minor tweaks and there are often differences in the product recommendations between books.
What I often do is look at the index of any cookbook I am interested in on the Amazon website to see if there are recipes I would want to cook in it.
I think they are great cookbooks, especially for learning how and why certain techniques or recipes work but the painstaking instructions drive me a little batty. You also need to beware of buying an ingredient you will never, ever use for another dish, just because they have specified that it is the ONLY THING that will give the dish the flavor they think it should have. (I'm looking at you Chinese chili-bean paste, Just couldn't get through that jar in the 2 years it took up space in my refrigerator. Chinese black vinegar is another thing languishing in my cupboard. And, I cook quite a bit of Asian or Asian inspired food and use a lot of vinegars.)
Thank you for your answers! I did get the following reply from ATK:
Thanks for your email. They do, overlap, yes. The TV show pulls a lot of it's material from Cook's Illustrated. I don't know specifically what the overlap percentage is, but there will be some. There will also be recipes and articles in Cook's Illustrated that are not in ATK TV cookbook. I'm sorry I can't be more helpful!