Hello, my name is Rochelle, and I’m a cookbook addict.

I am not sure when my addiction to cookbooks started, but I think it was when I was about 25 years old.  That’s about when I got my first cookbook, which was a gift from my mother-in-law.  It was, “The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook.”  Truth be told, I think the only recipe I have ever made from this cookbook was divinity, but I have turned to this book many times throughout the years.  Why?  Because it is full of really helpful information, and it was the first book I had to provide me with food equivalent amounts (I even have a bookmark on this page).

The reason I did not like this cookbook for the recipes was because it was like a “one size fits all” type of cookbook.  I wanted books that were specific to whatever it was I wanted to cook.  And, with that, I started collecting cookbooks.

I have cookbooks that are specific to baking bread, desserts, cookies, cakes, roasting, pasta sauces, whole grain baking, preserving, chowders, risotto, fruits and vegetables, stews, and tofu.  I also have cook books that are for appliance cooking (crock pots, pressure cookers, blenders, food processors, rice cookers, bread makers, steamers, etc.).

Over time, I realized there are some great general books on cooking.  I have some traditional standards, such as “The Joy of Cooking,” as well as a bunch of others.  Right now, one of my favorites is “The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook.”  That book is full of great information, as well as great recipes.

Then, there are my oddball books, such as “The American History Cookbook,” which is as much a history book as a book of recipes and “The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook,” which is a collection of real-world recipes that are either briefly mentioned or often discussed throughout the Harry Potter series.

We have a built-in bookshelf in our kitchen, and I have so many cookbooks that they fill up every shelf.  With so many cookbooks, I should be an outstanding cook, but I’m not.  I love to read by cookbooks, but have been very bad at actually making recipes.

Part of the appeal for me is that cookbooks allow me to dream about all the things I could make, if I chose to.  Well, it is time for me to put the cookbooks to good use, as I now prepare to actually use them as they are intended: to cook!

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