Not Just Tofu

Not So Useful

In Cookbooks, Recipe, Uncategorized on August 24, 2010 at 2:18 pm

Ok, not every cookbook is going to be helpful.  I have bought over 40 cookbooks over the last 5 years and not all of them are useful.  I have some that I use for inspiration because their dishes are beautful on the page but complicated to execute.  I have some cookbooks that use English (UK) measurements, grams and pounds instead of spoon and cups.  I am own English (UK) written cookbooks that have different names for ingredients that may not be available in my area. I have also bought cookbooks because 1 or 2 of the recipes caught my eye and then when I go through the book again I realize that I can only use 1 or 2 recipes.  These are all examples of what not to do. 

It is great to buy cookbooks and it’s even better if you use them.  I haven’t used all my cookbooks yet, but it is something I am trying to make a practice of.  Meal planning is the best way not to throw away grocery dollars.  By buying a cookbook that is pretty but not practical for your life is throwing away money.  I admit some cookbooks are so affordable but not so pracitical.  For example, I went to Borders bookstore and got caught up in the bargain buys section of the store.  While in bargain buys, I found a vegetarian cookbook “Homestyle Vegetarian” published by Bay Books.  I use this book for inspiration in creating my own original recipes.  This book is not practical for my life because when I come home after a busy day, I am not trying to cook elaborate meals.  I want something quick, healthy and delicious.  “Homestyle Vegetarian” is more for the entertaining, intermediate, experimental cook who is math capable because measurements are in grams and pounds. 

A better cookbook is “Vegetarian Cooking Commonsense Guide” by Bay Books which is still a little experimental but has more approachable recipes that can be executed after a busy day.  I can find most of the ingredients at my grocery store or farmers’ market which is very important to me.  Lastly, it has great pictures which are ideal for beginners because you want to know if you are cooking the recipe correctly.  It not only has pictures of the finished product, it also has step by step pictures which are the best tutorial for new cooks.  Vegetarian Cooking: A Commonsense Guide

The next time you pick a cookbook, give it the NOT JUST TOFU once over:

  • Can I use this cookbook on weekdays or weekends?
  • Do I recognize the ingredients used in the recipes?
  • Are these ingredients available at my grocery store or farmers’ market?
  • How extensive are the recipes?
  • Does the cookbook have pictures?

Don’t throw away money.  Invest in practical cookbooks that will help making a meal easier. 

For my go to cookbooks, please check out my cookbook referrals from July and June.

  1. Another good idea, the library has hundreds of cookbook. It would be a good to take a look at some of their cookbooks.You can check the cookbooks out for at least 2 weeks at a time. If you really like it, go to your local book store to purchase your own copy.

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