Hi, I'm Rachel.

A few years ago I could barely boil water.

True story.

Determined to be a kick ass wife, I developed a love for football and learned to cook in my tiny Jersey City kitchen. I spend my days working in Manhattan, my nights and weekends chasing after a rambunctious toddler, and the hours in between cooking with my husband and feeding my TV habit...oh, and I blog about it all! 

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« Pork Tenderloin with Apple Chutney | Main | The Giants Win! + Eating Roast Beef Sandwiches in Brooklyn »

Cookbook Challenge

I have a pretty extensive collection of cookbooks. I'd estimate that I own at least 15-20 cookbooks, not to mention a giant binder of magazine recipes and I subscribe to 3 magazines which contain recipes.


So yeah. It's a lot of recipe sourcing.

I also read like 100 blogs (actually) and I'm on Pinterest. The amount of recipe options is out of control.

I often turn to the good old worldwide web, rather than check out my cookbooks for recipes or while meal planning. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, but I hate that I have this extensive collection that just doesn't get as much use as it should!

I'm going to change that.

I've decided to make it a challenge. I'm going to pick a recipe from a different cookbook each week and get busy in the kitchen. I'm ashamed to admit that I have some gorgeous cookbooks in which I haven't made a single recipe! While others, I have made numerous recipes (Rocco, I'm looking at you!).

The challenge is actually two-fold in that I plan to choose recipes that are slightly out of my comfort zone...ones that use new ingredients (to me), new flavors. This doesn't mean that they have to be particularly difficult, but I think it will be fun to simply try some new things in the kitchen.

Right now, I have two recipes in the hopper for this week. Why two? Because I planned to make one of them last week and didn't do it. I know...not a good way to start off the challenge! And so this week, I plan to make two dishes. From my Williams-Sonoma Food + Wine cookbook, I plan to make a pork loin with apple chutney, and from my Better Homes and Gardens book, I plan to make a kalamata olive & lemon chicken. I can't wait to try these out and let you know how it all goes!

So that's my self-imposed culinary challenge. Who's with me? If you want to join the cookbook challenge and you have a blog, we could set up a link up day or something for our cookbook recipe posts! If you're not a blogger, I'd love to see some photos that you take of your goods and can share them here on the blog or on the Facebook page! Let me know!

Questions of the Day:

Do you use cookbooks?

Or do you scour the Internet for recipes?

Reader Comments (13)

fun challenge! i'm the same way - i almost always get my recipes from online even though i have tons of cookbooks. i need to try cracking some of them open more often. can't wait to hear how the challenge goes for you!

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteramy @ fearless homemaker

Oh dear God, me and my husband are the same way! I've got shelves of cookbooks, stacks of Food & Wine and Bon Appetite, files and files of recipes on my computer and 2 3-inch binders bursting at the seams. I guarantee that I have only actually used maybe 5% of the recipes. I think I may have to copycat you a bit in this endeavor!

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternicole

I also have a very good collection of cookbooks - that I never use! I am also so overloaded with recipes from magazines, blogs I follow, and pinterest. I should follow your lead and try to cook from one of my cookbooks once a week.

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErin

I so need to do that!! When I'm meal planning I should pick one recipe from a cookbook - good idea!
Pinterest has been great for online recipes - I find that I actually make them as I look through the board when I'm planning my meals.

I ususally check out anyone of Ina Garten's cookbooks - I always find her recipes to be winners. Then I'll go on Food Network and scan those recipes. I still refer to my Mom's favorite Good Housekeeping (red checked cover) cookbook - especially if making an old favorite - of course I adapt the recipes 9 times out of 10 - good Lord they REALLY ate unhealthy back in the day.

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMona

This is really sad - but I never have time to cook anymore unless it is super quick and easy - I don't even think I've made a stir-fry in ages!

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaura @ LauraLivesLife

This looks awesome and from books, to blogs, pinterest, random emails I get with recipes...so many recipes, most of which get lost in the shuffle or never made. You are on the right track with this idea!

Do I have cookbooks!! LOL!! Waaaay more than I should have, that's for sure.
I also have some cooking magazines that are delivered to my house.
I just LOVE this stuff, there's always something I never seen or heard of.

I also follow some blogs and I make those recipes. Really great ideas out there and seeing that I happen to like food a little....LOL....it's all right up my alley. :-)

I will say that I do make recipes from my cookbooks quite often.
My favorites so far have been the TASTE OF HOME books and magazines, SOUTHERN LIVING cookbooks and TYLER FLORENCE'S FAMILY MEAL cookbook.

I think it's great that you're going to do this challenge....YAY you!!
More power to you!

Have a great evening!

February 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDalila G.

ah, i'm putting myself to a similar sort of cookbook test - i have so many of them filled with what i assume to be delicious recipes, and really need to try more things from my books rather than blogs. good luck on your quest! :)

February 8, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersofia

i tend to do both. It depends on what kind of recipe I am looking for. If its a classic then old cookbooks it is and if I am looking for a twist on the old i go to the internet!

February 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKitchen Belleicious

Cool idea! Maybe do the whole mr linky, grab a button routine? Maybe shoot for the first of each month. Or for every Saturday? Don't ask me how all that is done. I'm like a 2 month old blogger. It's like a two month old baby cause I can hold my head up but I don't know how to crawl yet! Lol!

February 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLibby

I love that you're doing this!! I have about 30 cookbooks that I don't look at near as often as I should! It's shameful!

March 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKristin

I love Ina Garten and follow her blindly. Every recipe of her's that I have tried has been awesome! And then I have my very own hand written book with loads of recipes from my mom , mother in law , friends and other relatives.

April 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAsmita

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