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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:47 am 
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Banned from Vegan Freaks.

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 4:09 pm
Posts: 368
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, ON Canada
I LOVE menus and I am always so happy to see them included in cookbooks. Not many books do that, unfortunately.

I do not like recipes that are heavy on commercial fake meats and cheezes. This is something I really appreciate about Isa's, Bryanna's, and Jo's recipes.

I LOVE cookbooks that tell a story. One of my very favourite books is Cooking Jewish: 532 Great Recipes from the Rabinowitz Family. This book is over 600 pages of food and history - generations of photos and family stories. It's awesome!


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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 7:09 pm 
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Hearts James Cromwell
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Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:42 pm
Posts: 48
I positively HATE books that rely heavily on commercial product substitutions. Tell me to use the faux mayonnaise made with another recipe from the book and I'm happy. Tell me to use 'Nayonaise' or whatever and I'm annoyed (unless the book is supposed to promote that branded product ..) Tell me to use 'vegan substitute for mayonnaise' and I'm actively unhappy.

I photocopy recipes out of my cookbooks for kitchen use, so shiny paper or text printed on top of photos are a drag.

If pictures are in the book, great, if not I don't really miss 'em.

Books with a strong theme are more appealing than general catch-alls.

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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 1:55 am 
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Waited in a line late at night for some stuff
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Location: Louisville(J-town), KY
I like variety in the recipes--four-hour deals versus five minute quickies, exotic ingredients versus stuff that you always have, easy versus "I need backup in here in case I have a nervous breakdown." I'm still learning the basics in cooking, so the variety means I can keep learning even if I'm broke or don't have a lot of time, and I don't like getting frustrated because I can't use a cookbook at all due to these constraints.

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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 5:59 am 
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Attended Chelsea Clinton's Wedding

Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:28 am
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I would really prefer it if my cookbooks had more pictures. Since I buy most cookbooks online I actually do not know beforehand and it's not like I would return it. But I like browsing through the books many times before actually making something so photos are much better to have.

I am with Dave on the substitute issue, especially since I am in Germany and cannot get certain North American specialty items like faux bacon etc. I usually just leave them out then.

Medium sized and paperback is good. Hardcover is prettier but I have a lot of cookbooks and it's cheaper as a paperback.

I like themes.

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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:39 am 
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Lactose Intolerant...Literally
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 6:39 pm
Posts: 691
I love pictures, it's not absolutely necessary, but a nice addition.

I'm with the others who mentioned a really good index including ingredients. It's happened to me several times where I know that a particular book has a recipe with an ingredient I have, but it's not listed in the index so I have to flip through the whole book to find it. A good index is also necessary for books which do not follow the standard recipe categories (soups, appetizers, mains...), but follow for example a seasonal theme.

I prefer books that use whole foods. I don't like recipes that use packaged/processed/vegan sub foods as an ingredient for a couple of reasons. They can be hard to find if you don't live in the US, or if you live in small towns, they can be expensive, and I personally view these products as less healthy and would not normally buy them.

I'm not the most imaginative cook so I love books where the author offers tips such as alternative ingredients you can use if you don't have such and such on hand.


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 Post subject: Re: So, what do you look for in a cookbook??
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 10:58 am 
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Saggy Butt
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:17 pm
Posts: 1188
Location: Alberta, Canada
I like medium sized books that can stay open on their own (a real pet peeve of mine).
Although it's nice to have pictures with each recipe, I'm fine with having a few pictures thrown into each chapter. I really don't like it when there aren't any pictures at all and I also think that having one recipe per page is best. I hate it when the page has a recipe listed but then you have to go refer to 3 other recipes, I can understand referring to one recipe, but more then that and it gets excessive.
And yes, good indexing is very important to me. If I have zuchinni, I'd like to know which recipes I can use it in.

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