Tuesday, May 03, 2005

"New" old cookbooks

I saw some old cookbooks on ebay and decided to purchase the whole lot: 5 cookbooks - 25 pounds of hardcovered material. I actually found them while searching for a cookbook I used to have "The How-To Book of Healthy Cooking" from Reader's Digest.

Sometime in the early 90's I borrowed that book from our Public Library. I liked what I saw, tried a couple of recipes and was very happy with the result. The recipes were easy to make, used everyday ingredients that one usually has in the pantry, and the end result was delicious. Actually, what impressed me the most was that my younger son was interested enough to try his hand at cooking. Many recipes have step by step pictures which makes it easy for beginners.

So, after I returned the book to the Library I decided to purchase my own copy. Some four years ago when my younger son left home he took the book with him, saying he considered it an early inheritance.

Every now and then I thought of looking for another copy but never got around to it. Lately though, I found myself thinking about the book and some of the very useful information it contained. My searches through Amazon.ca, Chapters and even Readers Digest bore no fruit so I believe it must be out of print. That's when I thought of ebay and hit gold.

Besides the book I was looking for, the person was also selling some others and I decided to purchase them all. They were dirt cheap. So here are my "new" cookbooks:

The Complete Illustrated Step by Step Cookbook, by Judith Ferguson - as the name indicates it has ste-by-step photos for every recipe, one recipe per 2-pages, and focus on the cuisine of 8 countries: France, Italy, Germany, Greece, Poland, Spain, China and Mexico. It has some interesting recipes but not the best of the lot.

The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook, by Zoe Coulson, Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute - again it is full of photos and drawings. From page 18 to 77 it has a photo index of if not all the recipes in the book at least a good number of them. This is a nice feature: we can look and drool before we attempt. This is my second book with this feature and I'm looking forward to trying some of its recipes.

The Treasure of Creative Cooking, by the Editors of Consummers Guide. It features award-winnig recipes from entries submitted to contests in country fairs and and produce boards. An interesting book, it is all I can say for now. It is out of print. I could not find it, not even in the second-hand stores that work in tandem with Amazon.ca.

Featuring 4,400 recipes The Culinary Arts Institute Cookbook, is probably the one I am more in awe of. I don't think I'll have the time to try all the recipes in this huge book.

Stay tune...recipes following shortly.


Andrea said...

Wow! You got a bargain then. I love cook books or magazines. I would buy load of them and keep bying and reading and cooking...

Nic said...

I have so many old cookbooks with recipes marked for trying, but I keep getting hung up with the newer ones. Now I'm thinking of setting aside a day (or a week) for some good old fashioned cooking. =)

Ana said...

Dreska and Nic,

I guess we are kindred spirits when it comes to cookbooks. I love looking at the old recipes and find that many of the so-called new recipes are but the old ones with exoctic flavours.

What a good idea to set a day for and olddie. I was thinking of doing it once a week but sometimes I just run out of time. Can't wait to retire.