Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Cookbooks: Southern Living's Easy Weeknight Favorites

I don't like to cook. I love food, but I just can't get into cooking. Sure, I'll whip up the easy things like pasta and tacos, but spending a long time cooking a meal just doesn't interest me. I don't have the patience, or I'm just too anxious to eat, that something quick is always better. I think a lot of it comes from my mom. She worked all my life, so quick and easy meals were key. Plus, she had to cook for me and my dad, who are probably some of the pickiest eaters out there, so her options were already limited. Also, I hate the grocery store. When you're a busy person and your only time to go to the store is on the weekend, it's just not the most fun activity, you know? All this makes cooking meals just one of those things that has to be done and not fun, which is too bad because I love to eat.

A few years ago, probably around the time I got cable, I got way into the Food Network. I loved Rachael Ray and Giada and all the FN staples. But as simple as they make the dishes look (even you, Sandra Lee) they're never that easy. I have several cookbooks at home - many RR 30-minute meal books, plus a Bride & Groom cookbook with recipes - are you kidding me? - that are next to impossible unless you're on Top Chef. But one cookbook has been top notch for me: Southern Living's Our Best Easy Weeknight Favorites. I didn't even buy it. My aunt gave it to me, and she probably got it free through a subscription or something. But one day, the hubby and I flipped through it and found numerous options to try and we still cook these up several years later: meatloaf (I'm a pro at this meal and have even added my own twist), enchiladas, pizza sandwiches, parmesan chicken and several others.

Now it's your turn: What cookbooks do you swear by?


Charley said...

It's not for everyone, but I like The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook and Vegan With a Vengeance. I also like the Moosewood cookbooks. I also get a lot of my recipes online, from Vegetarian Times, Martha Stewart, and Epicurious.

willikat said...

you know what i love? not so much the books but the magazines: everyday food (done by martha's company) is AMAZING and EASY and super tasty and doesn't require a PhD in food cookery knowledge or multiple trips to specialty stores. and i've never made a recipe from it that i didn't like. also, i like RR and her magazine. easy peasy usually.
i hate the planning of cooking: grocery store, getting the right ingredients, and using them before they go bad. i think i'd like cooking more if i had more free time. but i love to eat and want to eat well, so i'm trying!