Staff Favourites

While the staff of Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks may be lucky to be able to play with hundreds of cookbooks here at the shop, they certainly have their favourite picks. Below is a selection of books that are most often used in Julie-Anne's kitchen at home.
1. Ad Hoc At Home
by Thomas Keller
I fell in love with Ad Hoc Restaurant in Napa Valley the first time I went and just had to take the book home. It is such a pretty book that I expected it to be a souvenir more than an everyday cookbook. It has come off my bookshelf at least once a week since then. From salad dressings and the most simple roasted beets, to lobster rolls and ice cream recipes, this book has every recipe you need to master the classic, comfort food dishes. I refer to it as my Bible and it is the one cookbook that has never let me down. Every recipe always works out beautifully.

2. A Homemade Life
by Molly Winzenberg

If you have read Molly's blog, Orangette, you know what a good writer she is. While blogs can be fun to follow, there's nothing like holding an actual copy of the book in your hands, sitting down and reading it cover to cover. Molly's story is funny and touching at the same time and the recipes scattered throughout her book are as tasty as they are easy to make. It is lovely to go into the kitchen afterwards since every recipe has a story behind it. Molly's second book is in the making and we look forward to reading it.

3. The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook
by Rachel Saunders
For anyone interested in making jam, this is the ultimate book to own. Founder of California's Blue Chair Jam Company, Rachel worked on her craft for ten years before publishing this book. The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook includes a ton of interesting jam flavours and recipes but also helps the reader understand different fruit and learn how to master the jamming process. It's informative, beautiful and inspiring.

4. Plenty
by Yotam Ottolenghi

We can't seem to hold on to this book for more than a few days. Ever since it hit North America, Plenty has been at the top of our best-selling list. It is a vegetarian cookbook made by a famous meatloving restaurant owner from England. Focused on vegetables, rather than vegetarian recipes, this book is all about flavour. Try the leek fritters, they are fantastic.