Authentic recipes, rich historical and cultural context, clear and concise directions, and beautiful photos make these titles well used cooking resources.
By Sharon Hudgins • Photographs Courtesy Sharon Hudgins
Every year thousands of new cookbooks are published in America and abroad. Many of them are big and glitzy, with color photos printed on slick paper. Some emphasize their “quick and easy” recipes. Others focus on the latest food fads. But most of the cookbooks I love—and keep going back to—are books published many years ago, whose recipes are authentic to the place and time they come from, and whose text provides the historical and cultural context of those recipes.
My personal library at home has approximately 2,000 cookbooks from around the world, in many languages, including more than 150 from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Alsace. Most of those are in German, a few are in English, and the Alsatian ones are in French (some with the Germanic-Alsatian dialect included). Even with this richness of information at my fingertips, there are certain books that I always consult when researching food articles for German Life—the same books that I recommend when people ask me to name my favorite Germanic cookbooks in English.