Thursday, May 3, 2012

This 'n That Thursdays: My First Cookbooks

From the BookMine

Recently I read an article on the NPR website about overnight breakfast foods by T. Susan Chang.  I followed a link to her blog, Eat Your Cookbooks, and ended up reading a post about "First-love cookbooks", those very first cookbooks purchased by budding cooks.  At the end of the post, Ms. Chang asks, "What cookbooks first led you down the primrose path?  And do you have them still?"  What a great question!  My first cookbook was an oldie from 1942 called Granddaughter's Inglenook Cookbook that I "inherited" from my mother, i.e., she never used it so I took it to college with me and it has been mine ever since!  Although I rarely used the recipes, I still enjoy leafing through it (I never get rid of cookbooks).  My first cookbook purchase was as a freshman in college, and the book was the hardcover version of Betty Crocker's Cookbook (1974).  It became my go-to source for recipes, especially when I cooked for others.  The recipes are easy to follow and I love the retro-look photos (which were the height of fashion at the time).  After my freshman year I moved into a studio apartment, and since I was on my own I decided to buy a cookbook called The Singles' First Menu Cookbook (1975).  The recipes made single servings and sounded pretty tasty as well.  Apparently the dog I owned at the time thought so too, as she chewed the corners of the book one day when I was on campus.  Those dog-eared corners now remind me of youthful times, and my beloved first dog.  I have purchased an embarrassing number of cookbooks since then, and have kept almost all of them, but these first three will always be special for the memories they evoke.

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