C is for Cookbooks


C is for Cookbooks

Following on from yesterday, we’ll expand into cookbooks- in my world they deserve a whole separate letter category.

Out of these shelves you want to know what my favourites are?


Here goes…in no particular order.

1. Adam Liaw

For excellent and authentic tasting Asian, it has to be Adam.

I’m still playing around with the new book, but I adore the hainanese chicken, beef rending and ayam kapitan from the original.


2. Spirit House

What can I say? The 3 most used books in my library.

If I was to ever get married again (naturally to the same man), it would be at Spirit House.


3. My Grossi collection

I’ve been eating at the Cellar Bar on every trip to Melbourne for about the last, wow, ten years…or more.

If when I get a publishing contract, I will be dressing up and opening the wallet to eat at Grossi Florentino.

In the meantime, whenever I feel like Italian, I go to these books first.


4. Annabel

I feel like I know her.

If pressed for a favourite, it would be a toss up between Free Range Cook and Savour The Pacific.


5. More Italian

Here at Chez Tracey, we love regional, everyday Italian. The sort of Italian food prepared simply, using fresh ingredients without a lot of faffing around. I have to confess to reading the Giorgio Locatelli more than I’ve cooked from it. I have other Italian cookbooks, but these are reliably good.


6. Kylie Kwong

For Chinese food that tastes like it should, I can’t go past Kylie Kwong. I love the recipes, I love her philosophy.


The best of the rest


  • If I’m after seafood, I go straight to Rick Stein
  • If I’m after luxuriant decadence, I look towards Nigella
  • If I’m after no nonsense cooking school simplicity, it has to be Delia Smith- or is that Saint Delia?
  • For pasta, pizza and salads, it’s Jamie. I love the integrity, simplicity and accessibility of Jamie. I love that he walks his talk, and I love that Jamie’s Italian, the restaurant, carries this philosophy through. I wrote about it here, and here…but have visited at least a few more times since.
  • For when I want to spend the afternoon in the kitchen making multi course spectaculars, it’s Nick Nairn, Matt Moran or Gordon Ramsay.
  • When I’m avoiding the boombah, but don’t want to compromise on taste, it’s Jane Kennedy, Golden Door, Jill Dupleix, or Gwinganna.
  • For French food, my all time fave is Taste of Provence by Robert Carrier. I bought this in Perth back in 1996. I don’t know whether it’s the purple cover or the lemons that do it for me- or just the amazing recipes within.


Tell me please- what’s your favourite cookbook…and why? 



7 comments on “C is for Cookbooks”
  1. Debbish says:

    I have to admit I’m not a big cookbook kinda person. I just see something online and – if I’m being motivated to try new things – I’ll make it. I get overwhelmed when something has too many ingredients or stuff I wouldn’t normally keep in my poorly-resourced larder. I do have some from my early days on Weight Watchers though and a few GF ones my mother bought… plus a whole series of Women’s Weekly ones from the early 1990s!

    1. Jo says:

      I often go for something I’ve seen online too- a random post or something from SMH’s Good Food, or even the weekly posts from Mind Food. It’s all about trying something new.

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