Tuesday, March 20, 2012

5 cookbooks fresh from the Internet

List by Danielle

“The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude.”
~ Julia Child

I love how the internet has transformed recipe collections. Not only do you get to dive into a whole heap of new, creative and repurposed recipes, you can often see how other cooks have used and altered them, with the initial recipe becoming a jump-off point for experiments, handy advice and twists that cater to personal tastes for more or less of this-and-that. All of us cooks can collaborate and add to the pool of knowledge - it's like a big, ongoing and enthusiastic conversation about food. Food blogs often add an immense visual appeal to the mix; there are some truly gorgeous food photographers out there, as well as some quirky and highly entertaining writers. Now you can have a flip through some of the tie-in books from our collection, and maybe find some new sites to try out, too.

Honourable mention
Tweet treats : 140 characters, 140 celebrities, recipes for every occasion / compiled & edited by Jane Travers.
Chocolate & zucchini : daily adventures in a Parisian kitchen / by Clotilde Dusoulier
Amma's cookbook : From Indian village to internet
Vegan yum yum : decadent (but doable) animal-free recipes for entertaining & everyday / Lauren Ulm
Julie and Julia : 365 days, 524 recipes, 1 tiny apartment kitchen : how one girl risked her marriage, her job, and her sanity to master the art of living / Julie Powell.


They draw & cook : 107 recipes illustrated by artists from around the world / Nate Padavick & Salli Swindell

They Draw and Cook blog
After starting their blog in February of 2010, Nate and Salli received hundreds of illustrated recipes from artists all over the world, which they decided to turn into a book. This book contains a sample of 107 of those illustrations that range in style from cute to goofy to absolutely gorgeous. The illustration styles range from elegant to cheeky, the recipes from drinks to desserts and everyday to extraordinary. You’ll find hilarious fare like Beetrooty-Yogurty-Thingummyji, Starving Artist Goo-lash, and Top Model Salad; international cuisine such as Moroccan Orange & Date Salad and Moules Frites; and tantalizing tastes like Marmalade Flapjacks and Chicken in Love.

Beautiful to flip through, though I have to admit the colourful art overwhelmed the recipes for me - I tended to forget there were actual recipes involved. The kids loved the humour and whimsy in many of the illustrations. Lots of fun and a great idea to hook up food and art like this.

OMG pancakes! : 75 cool creations your kids will love to eat / Jim Belosic

When Belosic started making pancakes in unusual designs, he was just trying to earn some cool cred with his daughter, Allie. Little did he know how happy he'd make her--and the millions of fans who eagerly await his latest creations on the Internet.

These architectural constructions need to be seen to be believed, and they all spring from a couple of basic techniques: making and colouring the batter, and funnelling it into a hot pan via some type of squeeze bottle, like a tomato sauce bottle. Funny, impressive and possibly even capable of duplication by the average breakfast cook (with a bit of patience)!

My daddy cooks : 100 fresh new recipes for the whole family / Nick Coffer

My Daddy Cooks video blog
How to cook delicious and easy family meals, in the tiniest kitchen, even with the chaotic and messy intervention of a toddler Stay-at-home dad Nick Coffer and his toddler Archie captured hearts and captivated taste buds around the world when they launched their video blog MyDaddyCooks.com from their tiny kitchen. In his first book, passionate food-lover Nick shares more than 100 tried and tested recipes for deliciously simple but innovative home-cooked dishes. From straightforward suppers and one-pot dishes such as Oven-baked Risotto and Mexican Lasagne, to sweet treats and indulgent desserts including Peanut Butter and Chocolate Brownies and Frozen Eton Mess Ice Cream, this is a book cooks will use time and again. Whether the reader is a dad or a mom looking for inspiration, or just someone who loves good food, this collection will liven up mealtimes without anyone having to spend hours in the kitchen.

'Foolproof and toddlerproof' recipes, says the introduction. Great idea, we have both in our household. The pics of Nick and his son Archie are gorgeous, and the recipes are both practical and offer a surprising range of tastes. He has some great money-saving suggestions, too, and an encouraging reminder that shopping and cooking with a pre-schooler can be fun (no, really!) if you put some thought into planning.

Cake pops : tips, tricks, and recipes for more than 40 irresistible mini treats / by Bakerella ; by Angie Dudley

The Bakerella blog The cake pops section
What's cuter than a cupcake? A cake pop, of course! Wildly popular blogger Bakerella (aka Angie Dudley) has turned cake pops into an international sensation! Cute little cakes on a stick from decorated balls to more ambitious shapes such as baby chicks, ice cream cones, and even cupcakes these adorable creations are the perfect alternative to cake at any party or get-together. Martha Stewart loved the cupcake pops so much she had Bakerella appear on her show to demonstrate making them. Now Angie makes it easy (use boxed cake mix Bakerella does!) and fun to recreate these amazing treats right at home with clear step-by-step instructions and photos of more than 40 featured projects, as well as clever tips for presentation, decorating, dipping, coloring and melting chocolate, and much more.

Tiny, tiny oh-so-cute cakes. On sticks. PERFECTION. Check out the Cake Pops section on the Bakerella blog to find Lorax pops, Muppet pops and loads more. Forget 'how do you make them', how can you bear to eat them?!

The just bento cookbook : everyday lunches to go / Makiko Itoh ; photographs by Makiko Doi

The Just Bento blog
Bento fever has recently swept across the West, fueled not just by an interest in cute, decorative food, but by the desire for an economical, healthy approach to eating in these times of recession. A leading light in the popularization of bento has been Makiko Itoh, whose blog, Just Bento, boasts hundreds of thousands of subscribers, all of whom love her delicious recipes and practical bento-making tips. Now, for the first time, Itoh's expertise has been packaged in book form. The Just Bento Cookbook contains twenty-five attractive bento menus and more than 150 recipes, all of which have been especially created for this book and are divided into two main sections, Japanese and Not-so-Japanese... This is the perfect book for the bento beginner, but will also provide a wealth of new bento recipe ideas and tips for bento aficionados.

I love bento! And any ideas for tarting up boring packed work lunches sound good to me. It looks straightforward enough for a cook without a great deal of precision or time (read: me), and it is aimed at people who may have trouble sourcing some of the more hard-to-find Japanese ingredients. Cute (bunny sandwich bento!) and practical at the same time.

1 comment:

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