These are my go-to cooking resources for creating fantastic meals.
Nordic Ware Half Baking Sheet – Best baking sheet I have ever owned! Doesn’t warp and get all discolored. Nothing worse than your food cooking unevenly because the baking sheet it’s on is doing gymnastics inside the oven.
Kevin Gillespie’s Fire in my Belly – I really enjoyed watching Kevin compete on Top Chef and was thrilled when he came out with a cookbook! His food philosophy is very similar to mine in that he emphasizes using fresh, seasonal ingredients in his cooking.
Michelle Tam’s Nom Nom Paleo – I came across Michelle’s blog a long time ago and have had great success with many of the recipes on her site. Her book is a perfect extension of her blog content, as it’s packed with new recipes and tons of information about nutrition.
The Lee Brothers’ Charleston Kitchen – I first encountered the Lee Brothers on a food travel show and jotted down several of their recommendations for a road trip to Charleston, South Carolina. We fell madly in love with the city and the great food there (so much so, we uprooted our lives to move there!). This cookbook features lots of farm-fresh recipes with really interesting stories behind each dish. If you are anything like me and read cookbooks like other people read novels, you will love this one.
Barefoot Contessa’s How Easy Is That – I love Ina. In my head, we are best friends. She doesn’t advertise herself as following any particular food philosophy, but her emphasis on using the best ingredients and making them shine means that most of her recipes use only “real” food. This particular book is full of excellent-tasting, super easy recipes with very simple ingredients.
Gwyneth Paltrow’s My Father’s Daughter – Gwyneth’s book is full of pretty standard recipes, but the interesting stories behind them (some involving other celebrities!) and clean layout make this a fantastic book for a novice in the kitchen. I’ve loved each and every thing I have made from this book.