I’ve spent much of 2016 putting pen to paper and getting plans in motion to begin working on a second cookbook. I signed on with a literary agent back in January, and together we’ve passed out a proposal, spoke with publishers and finalized a deal on a new book. So it was with great enthusiasm – for both of us – that we were able to share the news of my new book earlier this week.
‘Oven to Table: More Than 100 One-Pan Recipes to Cook, Bake & Share’ will be published by Penguin Random House in February 2019. I know it seems like such a long way off, but in the cookbook writing business, two years is about how long it takes to put a book together. My manuscript needs to be submitted to my editor in September (2017), and then we’ll spend about a year or so editing it and making it as good as it can possibly be. There’s a lot of work to be done in the next nine months, and from experience I can tell you it’s the hardest work a food writer can do, but it’s also the most rewarding. And I count my lucky stars every day that it’s work I get to do.
On the topic of cookbooks, I thought it was high time I share my favourite picks from the past year. If you’re the lucky recipient of an Indigo or Amazon gift card this holiday season, you might be inclined to choose one of these titles to add to your cookbook collection. Or, if you’re looking to find new cooking inspiration for 2017, I think you’ll find something here to consider. I’ve sorted my selections by topic, and have listed them in no particular order because, quite frankly, I loved them all.
These four all-purpose cookbooks are some of my favourite books, and I’ve cooked from all of them several times this year.
- Small Victories by Julia Turshen
- Cooking for Jeffrey by Ina Garten
- Dinner Made Simple by The Editors of Real Simple Magazine
- A New Way to Dinner by Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs
Home bakers will love all of these books. One is an all-purpose baking book, one is an extensive collection of cookies you need in your life, and the other is a guide on how to bake pretty much everything.
- The Vanilla Bean Baking Book by Sarah Kieffer
- Dorie’s Cookies by Dorie Greenspan
- How to Bake Everything by Mark Bittman
These books should be on the shelves of every enthusiastic home cook. Each is different, with a unique point of view, but the recipes work and make getting meals – both the everyday and special occasion ones – on the table doable.
- How to Celebrate Everything by Jenny Rosenstrach
- Mad Hungry Family by Lucinda Scala Quinn
- Make it Easy by Stacie Billis
- Best of Bridge The Family Slow Cooker Cookbook by Elizabeth Chorney-Booth, Sue Duncan and Julie Van Rosendaal
This book hasn’t left my sight for the past two months, and I’ve made many, many of the recipes found inside. While it is definitely a Christmas cookbook, there are a lot of recipes that will fare well in the winter months as well, and I have a feeling I’ll be cooking from it a lot in the coming weeks. I just adore it, and flip through it almost daily.
- Jamie Oliver’s Christmas by Jamie Oliver
I don’t often pick up single subject cookbooks, but these two books convinced me it would be worth doing so. Allison’s recipe for pumpkin spice London fog lattes alone is worth the price of the book.
Celebrity cookbooks often fall into the category of “all that glitters is not gold” but I have to say, I’m kind of smitten with these two titles. Everything I’ve made out of them is exactly as the recipe headnote describes it to be, and Chrissy Teigen’s Cobb Salad has been a staple around our dining table this year.
For The Kids:
I don’t buy a lot of “cooking for kids” cookbook, but this one is really sweet and has given me plenty of inspiring ideas when it comes to making meals for Matthew.
- Forest Feast for Kids by Erin Gleeson
On My Personal Wish List:
Believe it or not, I didn’t actually buy or receive all of the cookbooks that interested me this year, so I do have a few titles on my personal wish list. They include:
Wishing you all a delicious end to 2016. Be well, eat well and I’ll see you next year!