10 Spring Cookbooks to Put on Your Wish List
Birds are chirping, snow is melting and we’ve sent our puffy coats to the dry cleaner. It’s official: Spring is here. And along with the daffodils, we’re psyched about the great crop of spring cookbooks. Here are ten of our favorites, from farmers'-market-ready vegetarian to New York’s favorite burger joint.
Dinner by Melissa Clark
You may not know Clark by name, but we’re going to bet you’ve already made one (or 20) of her recipes. The New York Times columnist has published nearly 1,000 recipes in the paper and is the author of a mind-boggling 38 cookbooks. Her newest is all about the dreaded weeknight dinner—focusing on basic technique with bold flavors that will drag you out of your Netflix-and-takeout rut.
Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat
NPR once called Nosrat “the next Julia Child.” Based on her first cookbook, we can see why. The Chez Panisse alum uses a simple philosophy: balancing salt, fat, acid and heat (temperature, not spice) to create a perfect finished product. But recipes aside, the illustrations alone are worth the price.
Burma Superstar by Desmond Tan and Kate Leahy
Is Burmese the new Thai food? Plenty of San Franciscans (disciples of the city’s beloved Burma Superstar restaurant) would say yes. The hot spot’s first cookbook illuminates the spicy, savory food of Myanmar, from chili lamb to pork and pumpkin stew to the popular tea leaf salad.
In My Kitchen by Deborah Madison
Calling all vegetarians: If you don’t already know Deborah Madison, the time is now. For over 30 years, she’s been churning out cookbooks full of elegant, dependable and totally meat-free dishes. Her latest has plenty of classics, with updated twists to reflect the modern palate—kale, quinoa, chia seeds and nut butters abound.
Food52 Mighty Salads: 60 New Ways to Turn Salad Into Dinner
We know, we know. No one needs a cookbook to make a salad. That is, until you’ve seen this one. With recipes like roasted duck over spicy greens and featherweight slaw with chicken, the wise chefs of Food52 have seriously upped our greenery game. Plus, there’s expert advice on packing non-soggy lunch salads, keeping avocado from browning and how to save an overdressed salad.
The Haven’s Kitchen Cooking School by Alison Cayne
We’ll admit it: Sometimes we dream about quitting our jobs and heading to culinary school, where we’ll whip up delicate soufflés and buttery sole meunière. And then reality sets in. For a dose of that classical training without the tuition bill, Cayne’s gorgeous textbook (from her own NYC cooking school) is a pretty decent compromise.
Street Food Asia by Luke Nguyen
This Australian chef is the consummate guide to the vibrant street markets of Saigon, Bangkok, Singapore and Jakarta. Follow him from city to city in his new cookbook, then whip up a batch of Malaysian curry puffs and a pot of Vietnamese coffee and pretend you’re off on a globe-trotting adventure, too.
The Lost Kitchen by Erin French
French’s beautiful, rustic Maine restaurant is basically a New England farm-to-table-fantasy (the restaurant is in a restored mill, and you have cross an actual babbling brook to get there). Her food is warm, homey and seasonal: wood-smoked leg of lamb with garlic and mint pesto, fried green tomatoes with buttermilk and chives and sweet parsnip cake with hazelnuts and mascarpone, to name just a few.
Unforgettable: The Bold Flavors of Paula Wolfert’s Renegade Life by Emily Kaiser Thelin
In 2013, Paula Wolfert—a beloved cookbook author nicknamed “the Queen of the Mediterranean”—was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Wanting to preserve her life and legacy, food writer Emily Kaiser Thelin set up a Kickstarter and was overwhelmed with interest. The result is an incredible biography of a culinary legend, sprinkled with 50 of Wolfert’s favorite recipes.
Shake Shack: Recipes and Stories by Randy Garutti and Mark Rosati
Admit it, you’ve been dying for years to know what’s in that utterly addictive shack sauce. The first book about the ultra-popular fast-food chain demystifies the elusive sauce (secret weapon: pickling brine), teaches you how to get the perfect burger crust with a cast-iron pan and gets you summer-ready with an arsenal of creamy milkshakes.