Here are 7 books that should grace every kitchen and bedside table.
1. The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution, by Alice Waters (2007). Simple recipes to let your exuberantly fresh produce shine.
2. The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, by Michael Pollan (2006). Read this modern classic — which challenges us to think about what we put on the table from an economic, political and moral persepctive — and you’re sure to be on your way to local eating. Or if you’re pressed for time (and who isn’t?) pull up Pollan’s “Unhappy Meals” that ran in The New York Times Magazine on January 28, 2007.
3. Real Food: What to Eat and Why, by Nina Planck (2006). A persuasive follow-up to Pollan.
4. Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, by Deborah Madison (1997). With 700-plus pages of recipes for everything you’ll ever find at a market or in your farm share.
5. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, by Barbara Kingsolver (2007). Travel far enough down the “Eat Local” path and you’ll want to jump off the grid. Kingsolver and family actually did it, and this is their story.
6. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal, by Eric Schlosser (2001).This groundbreaking work by an all-star investigative journalist will make you regret every trip you’ve ever made to the Golden Arches.
7. Mastering the Art of French Cooking, by Simone Beck, Louisette Bertholle and Julia Child (1965). Look here for help with technique, even if you don’t want to make Oeufs en Croustades or Coquelets sur Canapes.