Jenn and I are the type of couple who enjoy reading cookbooks. Call us crazy, but we do. As someone who worked as a designer in Manhattan for over twenty years, I’m always checking out vintage and new cookbooks for their typography, book design, and photography. As a writer, I judge the clarity and art of the prose. Of course, as the chef who comes up with the vast majority of our original Reel Chow recipes, Jenn is always putting to test the dishes we find in new additions to our always-growing collection of cookbooks. Jenn is also surprisingly critical of how recipes are presented, and it helps dictate books and dishes she’s drawn to.
Although we read a wide range of cookbooks, there’s one genre we’ve avoided consistently, and that’s the “for Dummies” series of titles. This hasn’t entirely been a conscious decision. It always seems when we’re supporting our local independent booksellers, we’re consistently drawn to more expensively-produced cookbooks, with beautiful design and professional photography.
We partnered with Haystack Mountain for our last wine and cheese pairing (posted in two parts). During our conversations with the folks at Haystack we came in contact with Laurel Miller, one of the coauthors of Cheese for Dummies. Written with Thalassa Skinner, Cheese for Dummies is a great place to start assembling your knowledge on the dairy product humans have been obsessed with for 4000 years.