One of my favorite Christmas gifts to receive is a cookbook or other food-related tome. (I know it might be hard to think of food after Thanksgiving, but you will want to eat again.) I’m not an outstanding cook and rarely even use my books for recipes, but well-written cookbooks are like good novels (with much better visuals), they can be insightful, entertaining, inspiring, even funny. I am a big fan of Anthony Bourdain, and I hope his cookbook is as salty he is, it is top of my list. Mimi Thorisson, who seems to live the most idyllic life I’ve ever seen in the Medoc region of France and writes about it on her blog, has a second book out, French Country Cooking. Awarding-winning food writer Aleksandra Crapanzano managed to get London’s top chefs, pastry chefs, bartenders and more to divulge favorite recipes for The London Cookbook. Cherry Bombe magazine, which was co-founded by a friend and old Bazaar colleague, Kerry Diamond, is not a cookbook (though there are recipes), but a thoroughly enjoyable niche mag about women and food. A CB subscription would be a great gift for the female foodie in your life. And because I’m always California dreaming (and going to visit my sister there after Christmas), Everything I Want to Eat: Sqirl and the New California Cooking (Sqirl restaurant is also on my “to dine” list) and In the Spirit of Napa (not only an ode to the wine region but also a travel guide so you can plan your next trip) would both get me in a CA state of mind.
If you’re gifting a serious foodie, signed copies of many of the above books and others can be found on Food52. Of course, you could always gift yourself….