some good books

There are so many cookbooks available currently in book stores that I hesitate to recommend that you seek the ones listed here for your own use. Indeed, I own, or have owned enough to fill a goodly sized bookshelf, if I were to still have all of them and wanted access. But most of them just don’t fit my taste, dietary guidelines, and concept of dining. The few listed here are ones that significantly helped me develop my own desires, tastes, and style. I present them as a examples of the sources that have contributed to my culinary makeup. Since I started collecting them a long time ago, some are long out of print. Luckily, many can be found for sale via an internet search, should you be of such a mind as to surf for them.


If you are really serious about cooking the classics, you must own the following seminal works.

  • Carnacina, Luigi, Great Italian Cooking, Abradale Press Publishers, NY.
  • Child, Julia, Bertholde, Louisette, and Beck, Simone, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Alfred A. Knopf, NY, 1983.
  • Hanna, Elaine and Anderson, Jean, The New Doubleday Cookbook, Doubleday & Company, 1975, NY.
  • Montagné, Prosper. Larousse Gastronomique: The Encyclopedia of Food, Wine, and Cookery. Edited by Charlotte Turgeon and Nina Froud. New York : Crown, 1961.
  • Rombauer, Irma and Rombauer, Marion Becker, The Joy of Cooking, Bobbs-Merrill Company, Indianapolis and NY, 1961.


  • Allen, Ida Bailey, Gastronomique, Doubleday & Company, Garden City, NY, 1958.
  • Bayou Cuisine: Its Tradition and Transition, Published by St. Stephens’s Episcopal Church, Indianola, MS, 6th printing, 1979.
  • Clairborne, Craig, An Herb and Spice Cook Book, Harper and Rowe, New York, 1963.
  • Cranwell, John Philips, Fast and Fancy Cookery, Doubleday & Company, Garden City, NY, 1959.
  • Farmer, Fannie Merritt, The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book. Boston : Little, Brown, 1918 (still in print and online here).
  • Ranhofer, Charles, The Epicurean. A Complete Treatise of Analytical and Practical Studies on the Culinary Art Including Table and Wine Service, How to Prepare and Cook Dishes, an Index for Marketing, a Great Variety of Bills of Fare for Breakfasts, Luncheons, Dinners, Suppers, Ambigus, Buffets, etc., and a Selection of Interesting Bills of Fare of Delmonico’s, from 1862 to 1894, Making a Franco-American Culinary Encyclopedia, New York, Charles Ranhofer, Publisher, 682 West End Avenue, 1894. (Still available online here).
  • Wood, Morrison, With a Jug of Wine, Farrar, Straus, and Company, New York, 1949. Also More Recipes With a Jug of Wine (1956) and Through Europe With a Jug of Wine (1964).


  • Coulson, Zoe (editor), The Good Housekeeping Cookbook, Good Housekeeping Books, NY, 1973.