Barbara's Reviews > The Joy of Cooking

The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer
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Jan 23, 11

bookshelves: cooking-baking
I own a copy, read count: innumerable

I don't know why it took so long for me to include this very worthy book to my Goodreads Library. This is my second copy. The first, a paperback, became so tattered and worn that my son presented this valued edition as a gift. I have been cooking for more than forty years, but continue to return to this book for ideas, information and special recipes. On many occasions I search for new ways to prepare foods and will find the ideal formula for preparation. Frequently I will "tweak" the recipe in order to please the palates of my diners, but JOY has rarely failed to please me.

It is important to note here that this is far more than a recipe book. It is possible to sit down and read this hefty tome for information and sheer enjoyment. Aside from the wealth of sections for appetizers, through to a huge array of desserts, there are sections describing a multitude of food facts. One can learn about different grains, exotic fruits and vegetables and the preparation and significance of many ethnic foods. Historical and geograpical factors are also included.

I would recommend this above all other cookbooks for both novice and experienced food preparers! A perfect engagement gift!
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Comments (showing 1-44 of 44) (44 new)

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message 1: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia "A perfect engagement gift!"

As long as you give it just to the groom. hehehehehehehe

This is one cookbook I don't have :(.


Barbara Actually, I gave this to one of my sons. He was abachelor for a long time and loved to cook. By the way he is an excellent, inventive cook!


message 3: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Barbara wrote: "Actually, I gave this to one of my sons. He was abachelor for a long time and loved to cook. By the way he is an excellent, inventive cook!"

I've got the inventive part down. I wish I could reach the excellent component.


Barbara I often don't have the patience to be excellent these days!!


message 5: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Oddly the older I get the less I eat just because it seems like too much trouble to put something together :(.


Barbara I often feel that way, but I also cook for my husband who is a good guy, but helpless at the stove!


message 7: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Maybe we should get seeing eye cats who also double as cooks. Forget about breeding cats with no dander and get busy on this project scientists!


Barbara I love it!


message 9: by Merilee (new)

Merilee I agree with you on this, Barb. I don't know why for so long I had pictured it as old and stodgy, but I realized maybe 15 years ago that's a really good cookbook. There's also a new vegetarian version which thrilled my daughter at Xmas.


Barbara I continue to learn little nuggets about preparation and stories of unfamiliar foods!


message 11: by Merilee (new)

Merilee yes! My mother always referred to it as Rombauer.


message 12: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek I also got the new edition when my 1953 edition got too messy. I completely lost scrambled eggs with crabmeat--the page wore out. How to turn a quarter pound of crabmeat into a dinner for four, just add a salad. I also have some cookbooks that belonged to my grandmother, Fruit and Flower Mission Cookbook, published in Seattle in 1930, Duncan Hines" Adventures in Good Cooking, published in 1943, the first printing of the Sunset Cook Book of Favorite Recipes, 1949. The only other cookbook I've bought twice is Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything--my first copy was paper and fell apart, but I saved recipes that aren't in the new edition.


message 13: by K.D. (new)

K.D. Absolutely I know this book! I should get me a copy and try cooking again! My wife and daughter love my cooking!


message 14: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek There's nothing as sexy as a man in the kitchen.


message 15: by Merilee (new)

Merilee I love the Sunset books. I have a Chicken and Turkey paperback that has gotten really grungy. I've tried to replace it and buy it as a gift for friends, but it seems to be out of print.


message 16: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joan wrote: "I also got the new edition when my 1953 edition got too messy. I completely lost scrambled eggs with crabmeat--the page wore out. How to turn a quarter pound of crabmeat into a dinner for four, jus..."

Joan don't you love the grandma recipes? My grandma was a great cook. I still remember her german potato salad and chicken and dumplings. To die for. And her gravy!!! I wish I'd paid attention to how she did it. Why did plain bread and butter taste so much better at her house? And what was with those heavy iron pots she had. She was only 4'10" and not big. I'm not sure how she lifted those pots.

My mom didn't like to cook so I was kind of on my own when I left home....ok even before since I took over the cooking at about age 14.

c


message 17: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joan wrote: "There's nothing as sexy as a man in the kitchen."

Amen.


message 18: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Merilee wrote: "I love the Sunset books. I have a Chicken and Turkey paperback that has gotten really grungy. I've tried to replace it and buy it as a gift for friends, but it seems to be out of print."

Sunset books? As in the retirement mag?


message 19: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek Cynthia--I just checked your profile, thinking you must be from Nova Scotia to not know about Sunset magazine and Sunset books. You live in Glendale!


message 20: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Joan wrote: "Cynthia--I just checked your profile, thinking you must be from Nova Scotia to not know about Sunset magazine and Sunset books. You live in Glendale!"

Yes I live in Glendale, CA....right outside LA. So what are sunset books. Stop torturing me.


message 21: by Merilee (new)

Merilee http://www.sunset.com/magazine/

It's not a retirement mag. I'm sure you've seen this on the newsstands and they also have great cookbooks and gardening books and travel books.


message 22: by Teresa (last edited Jan 24, 2011 09:12PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Teresa Cynthia wrote: "So what are sunset books. Stop torturing me. "

I don't know what they are either, C, never heard of them.

My grandma had those iron pots too, C. She gave me a set of Magnalites for a wedding present back in 1981, and I'm never giving them up.


message 23: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek Follow Merilee's thread,1652517 http://www.sunset.com/magazine/.
I like Lodge cast iron skillets, am also fortunate to have several Le Creuset pots and pans.


message 24: by Merilee (new)

Merilee I love Le Creuset but I am finding them a bit heavy in my "dottage", especially since they're stored down below and in the back...I have a wonderful tajine/braiser
that Jamie got me last birthday:
http://www.emilehenryusa.com/Flame-To...

It's great for just about anything, including browning, and it's heavy, but not as heavy as Le Creuset. It can also go in the microwave, but mine's too big. I might invest in a smaller one as well. I use it for almost everything except for huge batches of soups or stews.


message 25: by Barbara (last edited Jan 25, 2011 10:17AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Barbara I seem to have started something here! Good! There are to many tidbits here to reply to each, so I'll just ramble.

I never heard of Sunset either!

I have a cookbook from my 6th grade cooking class. It was old then, by the way. It's all splotched and gray. It is The Science and Art of Homemaking , published in 1945 ! Some of it is almost humorous, but most contains good common sense, such as " It is absolutely essential to cook and select only fresh fish, as serious and often fatal sickness results from eating fish that has been kept too long...". There are even a couple of recipes that I continue to use- and always a complete success, esp. brownies and cranberry sauce.

My grandmother was a "ho-hum" cook!


message 26: by Merilee (new)

Merilee I have my 7th Grade Home Ec Betty Crocker cookbook (3-ring binder). I still make popovers out of it, and my dd made some breads out of it. It is very very splotched. Did any of you ever make the dreadful eggs ala goldenrod in Home Ec? We had a horrible Home Ec teacher and I think it was the only course I ever got a C in, despite having grown into a much better than average cook and dressmaker (if I may say so myself;-) The food we made was so awful and the blouse we made looked like one of those 50s maternity blouses, with our initials done in chainstich on the pocket. I'm sure nobody ever wore hers...


Barbara We had to make bib type aprons to wear. Mine was particularly strange looking- even though I later made most of my own clothes, etc. We had a terrible, mean teacher who used to criticize in a cruel, uncionstructive manner. Yes, our food was pretty bad too, except for the whole berry cranberry sauce, which we made for our family's Thanksgiving!


message 28: by Merilee (new)

Merilee We made stupid aprons which were just a rectangle of cloth on a plastic waist-thingie that you threaded through a channel you made in the fabric.


Barbara That probably would have been a more appropriate thing for me to make then!


message 30: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia I never took home ec. I was able to get out of it because I was in orchestra....consequently you don't want to eat anything I make.


message 31: by Merilee (new)

Merilee Barb and I'll do the cooking and you provide the musical entertainment!!


message 32: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia lol


Barbara C, home ec did not provide the skills to educate a cook, or a monkey!


message 34: by Merilee (new)

Merilee Barb and I learned on our own! (with some help from mother, in my case.)


Barbara Ditto!


message 36: by Merilee (new)

Merilee Cooking's easy, if you're willing to take risks and experiment! I often cook dishes for the first time when I have company and I've had very few disasters....


message 37: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek I've had some big disasters--e.g., the cold lasagna. But that was over 40 years ago.
This evening I made a mixed antipasto (recipe on epicurious.com) for my book club's meeting tomorrow. OMG: it came out huge. So I'll take only half, and I've emailed the hostess that we will need plates and forks--or lots of napkins if it's supposed to be finger food. This was a first time--we'll see how it comes out.


message 38: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia I love, love, love antipasto.


message 39: by Merilee (new)

Merilee I love epicurious, but don't believe the banner ad that says Eat more, weigh less;-)

Let us know how the antipasti turn out! And you'll be able to enjoy the other half.

Speaking of disasters, there was the time the BBQ ran out of propane when the leg of lamb was only 10% done and the guests were here and we didn't yet have a microwave...


message 40: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia dang...........

Was your oven working though I know that would take a long time for some hungry folks.


message 41: by Merilee (new)

Merilee Yup, I had to use the oven, and it was a hot hot day...I now use the same natural gas as for my stove to my BBQ (horrible syntax there) so we never run out.


Barbara I am so surprised (and pleased) that this entry has stimulated so much (scholarly) discussion! :)


message 43: by Merilee (new)

Merilee ever so scholarly and intellectual;-)


message 44: by Joan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joan Winnek Mixed antipasto from epicurious.com is delicious, and easily makes enough for 10 or 12.


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