Is anyone else out there a complete cookbook junkie? I’ll hold my hands up now and confess. Despite the incredible wealth of recipes online, which I contribute to in my own small way, you just can’t beat a cookbook for inspiration in the kitchen or just to curl up in bed with, and get lost in the pages. I used to bring heaps back from the UK in my suitcase or trust to international post, but there are so many great sources here in Dubai now that it’s only the vintage ones that test my excess baggage allowance.
Here are my regular haunts for cookbooks and few titles on my wish list:
Book World by Kinokunya
For those not able to get to Librairie Gourmande in Paris (the largest cookbook shop in the world), Kinokunya may offer some solace. It’s cookbook heaven by any standards not just the UAE, and the range and diversity of titles including new releases mean that my wish list never goes down. Piles of the latest culinary tomes greet you when you enter the shop and also when you arrive in the cookbook section. Celebrity chef titles line up along the curved shelves of the back wall, from Arzak to Zilli. Different categories of cuisine and ingredients fill the rest of the space. The array of bread and baking books alone covers the same amount of space as the whole of the cookbook collection in many other book retailers. It’s a great resource for recipes from around the world, not just the copious amount of alluring titles dedicated to the Middle Eastern food. The excellent range of vegetarian and vegan books have been on my hit list of late to meet my daughter’s dietary preferences. In contrast there are also shelves paying homage to meat in all its forms from butchery and barbecue to offal.
And who knew there were so many books devoted to chocolate? The long benches are the perfect place to grab a stack and leaf through the pristine pages of edible print. You could lose me there for days given half the chance!
Recommended recent purchases: A Modern Way to Eat by Anna Jones; The Homemade Vegan Pantry by Miyoko Schinner
Once a mecca for all things in culinary print in Dubai, the selection is less capacious as it used to be but nevertheless provides plenty of fodder for the foodie. You can order online from www.magrudy.com but I’d still rather step back in time to the quiet tranquility of their upper floor and contemplate the range in a part of old Jumeirah. Those searching for current health trends will find a lot to peruse from Superfoods to Gluten-free baking. The doyenne of British Baking, Mary Berry, is also well represented and there are many curious titles online such as The Pocket Guide to Field Dressing, Butchering and Cooking Deer. A wealth of inspiration for gift ideas, even for people who are hard to please!
On my wish list: Movida Solera by Frank Camorra and Richard Cornish; Vegan Love Story by Tibits & Hiltl: The Cookbook by Juliette Chretien, Reto Frei, Rolf Hiltl
Feeling lost in the Mall of the Emirates? Some cookbook comfort can be found to the rear of the Virgin store although earplugs are recommended. There’s a surprisingly large range packed into a small space which are mainly best-sellers, Middle Eastern titles and some novelty books such as ‘Burgers’ and ‘Nutella’ in appropriately shaped formats.
On my wish list: Jamie’s Food Revolution by Jamie Oliver; A Modern Way to Cook by Anna Jones
[This story is exclusive to FoodeMag dxb]