Recipes I Can't Live Without

The problem with the world we live in now is that there are over 3,210,000,000 results when you look for "recipes".


I don't even keep a lot of cookbooks around because I know that I just don't use them that often. While I rely heavily on rhythms around cooking to keep meal planning simple, I also keep a few around that I continue to go back to again and again for inspiration.


Since a lot of you come looking for more ideas around healthy meals, I thought I would share some of the recipe resources I can't live without. Since I don't do much fancy cooking anymore, I rely on simple family-style meals that I typically add a vegetable and side dish to boost the nutrition.


While most of us just pull a recipe up on our phone, I find it satisfying to have a few grease-spattered cookbooks with my notes in it as a record of all the times we've made and shared over the years.



My Top 6 Recipe Sources

1. ALLLL this...and I mean all my cooking and my catering which turned into a career is in the hands of a cookbook called The Frog Commissary, which introduced me to international recipes and taste-good foods that I still cook to this day like the Peanut Satay sauce and Deep Dish Pizza. It still has an assortment of some of the best crowd pleasing recipes that I have found.


2.The Joy of Cooking : it is an encyclopedia of all the basic recipes for cooking that a beginner cook would need as well as the technical approach to things that matter like when you make a caramel sauce that actually sets (here's looking at you Pinterest recipes)


3. Love Real Food by Kathryn Taylor of Cookie + Kate : I adore her vegetarian dishes like my favorite Better Broccoli Casserole and more recently her Arugula and Wild Rice Salad.


4. Bon Appetit Healthyish edition-- some of my favorites each year from this magazine I keep coming back to like the Toasted Garlic Beef Stock that I use for ramen bowls.


5. My newest favorite has been the surprising southern flavors in this cookbook by Vivian Howard in her cookbook Deep Run Roots. It's organized by ingredient so you have to be in a "peach" mode to find the recipes that correspond but one of my top favorite dishes is her Charred Spring Vegetable with Creamy Scallion Dressing and Hush Puppy Croutons.


7. For all things Asian (and I love all Vietnamese Thai and Singapore style dishes) I use this authentic guide Terrific Pacific. Caution: this will make you go to depths of the Asian markets that you've never seen before but the outcomes especially from the homemade green curry paste is worth it)


Bonus: I know I've come along way from this but I have to say that my kids still love using these two cookbooks themselves and so we find some of these simple recipes still on repeat: KidsCooking: A Slightly Messy Manual-- by Klutz and Muffins and Quick Breads. These are the very first two cookbooks I was ever given and I still love eating some of the recipes!


If you want more ideas for recipes visit my Pinterest page where I have some more favorites saved.

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©2020 Nora Shank, Virginia | United States