I have just received my newest cookbook: How to Cook Everything - 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food by Mark Bittman.
I ordered it because I am on the committee for the RI Food Bank's spring event - Food Matters: An Evening with Mark Bittman. Without any formal training, he has become a highly respected food writer and has cooked with many famous chefs. So basically, he is one of my idols, and if I am going to meet him I should buy his book first right?
It is quite a large book - over 1,000 pages. Mario Batali (excellent Italian chef) has said this is the only cookbook you need, you could throw out your others. Really Mario? You think I should throw out Molto Italiano and The Babbo Cookbook? I doubt I'll go that far, but I can see how this new one will get a lot of use. There are so many recipes - for appetizers, entrees, and desserts...meat and vegetarian...Italian, Asian and all-American...even how to bake bread. I've only skimmed it, but I like that a lot of it is not specific recipes that need to be followed to the letter, but the basics of how to do things so that creativity is encouraged. His basic premise is that fancy food should be left to the restaurants. "Everyday cooking is not about striving for brilliance but about preparing good, wholesome, tasty, varied meals for the ones you love. This is a fundamentally satisfying pleasure." I agree!
There is also information on tools, techniques, food safety and buying the right ingredients. The list price is $35, but I ordered it from Amazon for just over $20.
I can already tell I will be posting a lot of cooking from this book...