Great Cookbooks as Holiday Gifts

When wondering what to give someone, cookbooks are probably not at the top of most lists but they are an incredible gift. They can be referred to continually and help to make healthy dishes that will be loved by family and friends. I asked our food and nutrition columnists Anouk Booneman and Theresa DeLorenzo for suggestions and have a surprise from Jim Gazzale. As an aside, all of these are great gifts if you are in a pinch because both Amazon and Barnes and Noble will send these to your home in one day.


Anouk Booneman

Anouk on right with cooking partner Danielle Maslowsky

Food rules: An Eater’s Manual by Michael Pollan

Michael’s Pollan’s food philosophy has laid the foundation of the workshops that Danielle Maslowsky and I give: Spring Into Health. In our workshops we follow this plan: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants. This book is one of our favorites. It lays out straightforward rules for eating wisely. And easy and fun read. For those who want to read more about Michael Pollan's food philosophy we also recommend his book The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals (it also comes in a young readers edition for teens). This book will change the way you look at food. 

Saladish by Ilene Rosen with Donna Gelb

This book is the 2019 winner of the James Beard award for the best book of the year in vegetable-focused cooking and rightly so. Not all the ingredients are readily available but in our workshops we tell people to not be slaves of a recipe. Omit or swap with another ingredient. It will definitely inspire you to elevate your daily salads.

The First Mess Cookbook: Vibrant Plant Based Recipes to Eat Well Through the Seasons from Laura Wright. Laura Wright has a blog called First Mess. Check it out first. If you like her seasonal recipes definitely get this book. It will definitely help you cook with seasonal and local vegetables. 

Six Seasons: a New Way with Vegetables by Joshua MC Fadden.

Must have for fresh vegetable lovers and CSA-Community Supported Agriculture members. One of my favorites. Amazing textures and flavor combinations. Recipes are not too difficult to follow.

Anything from Molly Katzen but I especially like her recipe books for kids like "Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes: A Cookbook for Preschoolers and Up" or "Honest Pretzels: and 64 Other Amazing Recipes for Cooks Ages 8 & Up"

Anything from Ottolenghi. Yes you need to have all his books! but maybe start with "Ottolenghi Simple: a Cookbook" with Recipes that Can be Made in 30 Minutes or Less, with Ten or Fewer Ingredients. "

 "Vegetable Butcher: How to Select, Prep, Slice, Dice and Masterfully Cook Vegetables from Artichokes to Zucchini" by Carla Mangini. In beautiful photographs the author shows you how to “butcher” vegetables: how do you break down a butternut squash? How do you chiffonade kale? How to peel a tomato. Amazing recipes as well. This year I will purchase a few as gifts.


Theresa DeLorenzo

                   Theresa with her daughters

Although Theresa has recommended some writers such as Marathon runner Shalane Flanagan for great cookbooks, we would like to highlight the exceptional works Theresa has written, her most recent being Healthy Holiday, which is available as an eBook or in print.  We will preview the first three pages of this superb cookbook available at Nutrition for Optimal Performance where you can explore her works, which all are great for the holiday season or for good, healthy food throughout the year. Her recipes include a note about what nutrients they provide and why they are so healthy.

Click on picture below to see Theresa's other 5 books


And as our last treat, Jim Gazzale, who writes the column Food for Thought has a free cookbook for you if you go to his site! Click on Jim’s picture above.

Bon appétit!


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