I love cookbooks and have for a very long time. Why? I have learned how to cook by using cookbooks and still continue to learn through them today.
Learning how to make fudge, chocolate chip cookies and snickerdoodles are some of my earliest memories as a child. We always used recipes – some from packaging and some from family recipe, it was my first exposure to recipes and cookbooks. As I got older I was normally around the kitchen when my Mom was making dinner but never paid much attention to the steps she was doing.
When I was in college and moved out of the dorms I had to learn to cook not just bake for myself, because, honestly you can’t live off of cookies and fudge alone (I wish you could). I found out very quickly that if I had a recipe I was able to follow it fairly well. As soon as I made this realization I started collecting cookbooks. At first I focused on really simple ones and then expanded my collection as I became more comfortable in the kitchen.
Are there recipes I can make off the top of my head for dinner? Now, yes, back in college no. I still find myself looking at recipes on a regular basis to make sure I am getting the measurements correct. As we all know if a measurement is wrong in cooking it sometimes can be okay but in baking it can ruin the entire recipe. Since I love to bake and have been doing it for as long as I can remember I have been hardwired to make sure my measurements are correct so I don’t waste my dish.
By using cookbooks I have been able to expand the dishes and techniques that I can make in the kitchen. Normally I have success with the recipes, but don’t get me wrong off and on I have a terrible mishap in the kitchen, if you cook it is bound to happen. I just don’t let it deter me from trying something new again.
Cookbooks have helped me become the skilled home chef I am today. I have learned how to use my crockpot, how to broil, how to make soup (something I never thought I would do) and how to make some amazing French dishes.
I can’t imagine not being able to open my cookbooks and look for the next recipe to make. Or to go back to that recipe that I loved. You can explore a whole world through cookbooks and I love it.
What are your first memories of using cookbooks or recipes? What’s one thing you have learned from cookbooks?