Rainy day cookbooks

I've got them.  You've got them.  Pretty much anybody with over 100 cookbooks has a couple.  That's right - those books that we set aside for a rainy day, or a day when the kids have a field trip, or when we've already finished all the knitting projects.

This year seems to have brought a whole bunch of them, with their "it's so easy" allure.  I know I should just say no, but somehow every time my hand is hovering over the "Give Away" pile, a magnetic force drags it back over to the "Maybe" or even the "Library" pile.  If I had a "Someday" pile, it would be taller than our house.

The thing they all seem to have in common is that they're not foods you can make a meal of, quite.  I mean, it's true that I've made a meal of salami on a couple of occasions - but you're not supposed to.  So in addition to the unfamiliarity of the techniques and the time it may take to master them, you have the added downer of having to *still* make dinner after.

Nevertheless, I'm planning to give it a go with this book of Crackers & Dips.  I know, I know, I said that last month about the doughnuts, which I stil l haven't tackled.  But there's this recipe for Japanese rice crackers...

What are your "someday" books?  Maybe we should have a Month of Somedays where we all scale the heights of our most long-delayed cooking projects...

12 Comments

  • Jane  on  9/3/2013 at 2:47 PM

    Not having any spare time (thanks EYB!) I don't get into projects like charcuterie. But my indulgence when I have the time is special desserts - making them for Thanksgiving or entertaining (mine or my friends).

  • Christine  on  9/3/2013 at 3:23 PM

    I am very guilty of this myself! Some subjects I keep thinking I will explore are pasta-making, homemade dairy, preserving, and chocolate/candy making, not to mention the various "DIY" books that cover a wide range of cooking projects -- I have tried only a handful of chocolate recipes and keep thinking I will get around to the others, but it hasn't happened yet!

  • sisterspat  on  9/3/2013 at 5:05 PM

    The India cookbook, had good intentions, even purchased some pots and spices. I just lost interest getting all set up to start learning a new way of cooking. Hopefully this fall I will get the bug and give it a try. I have all the "stuff" just need the inspiration.

  • ellabee  on  9/3/2013 at 6:10 PM

    Crackers and flatbreads are the two things I've repeatedly convinced myself I'm going to do, but repeatedly don't. Want very much to hear how things go with the rice crackers!

  • wester  on  9/4/2013 at 1:51 AM

    I was surprised to find that I don't really have project cookbooks. But I do definitely have projects-for-someday. It used to be baking my own bread and making my own pasta, but now I've gone low-carb those have gone out the window. Most of the projects I have now are ingredient-based. Either I see something that I want to cook sometimes (a whole rabbit, brains, ...), or I get the idea that I should find a certain ingredient to cook with (caul fat, yuzu juice, ...). And I have to find a butcher that has interesting pig breeds, etc.

  • Lindsay  on  9/4/2013 at 11:05 AM

    Have become very interested recently in making seasoned salt mixtures - figure they're healthy (you can use them to avoid adding too much fat to things) and despite the hundreds of premixed, none seem to be worth the cost.

  • sir_ken_g  on  9/4/2013 at 11:44 AM

    I have a few books like that but am almost never tempted. David Thompson's Thai Food comes to mind. Curry paste from scratch? Even the Thai house wives don't do that anymore. Get a life! It's a great reference though.

  • Susan_F  on  9/4/2013 at 12:11 PM

    My 'one day' cookbook is Bouchon Bakery. It is my most beautiful cookery book and I love looking at it - but I have to admit it really scares me!! So, one day when I'm a more confident baker I will try some of the recipes. But until then I'll stick to looking at the photographs :-)

  • rivergait  on  9/4/2013 at 1:53 PM

    When my rainy-day books began sprouting so many skinny Post-It tabs they began to look like wheat stalks swaying on the prairie wind, I found an EYB way to make better notes of good stuff. I have a bookmark called "unique foods", so I can find uses for farro that looked intersting, for the chicken thighs and legs on sale, desmembered and frozen by me, and the scads of apricots, blackberries, zucchini, and pomegrantes that overwhelm my kitchen kitchen while in season. That "rainy day" may be one which is 110 degrees in the summer, because hunkering down does not necessarily have to be on a wet day.

  • doconnor  on  9/9/2013 at 10:05 AM

    I cook with a friend. Our motto is that together we will try something neither of us has the guts to do by ourselves. She is a vegetarian, so that helps me get beyond my usual recipes. I also have found out over the years that things that once seemed impossible -- such as making pasta from scratch -- are now just a matter of course, once I got the hang of it. Like most things in life, after you do something difficult a couple of times, it seems easy.

  • debkellie  on  9/9/2013 at 10:12 PM

    I'm with you doconnor - branch out try some new things! We did a cheese making course 2 years ago - interest waned post course but this months feast magazine makes me want to try making haloumi!!!

  • tsusan  on  9/10/2013 at 9:23 AM

    Fantastic reading about everybody else's Someday foods! Of course, I *still* haven't got to the rice crackers (my eldest battling mystery pneumonia all last week/weekend). Maybe you can tell the difference between Someday foods and Right Now foods by whether they can still get made-and eaten!-amid the everyday crises that crop up in people's lives... On the other hand, I did make ghee for the first time this week.

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