Here's what to add to the cook in your life's bookshelf.
Edible Selby, by Todd Selby, Chad Robertson, Sally Singer. Abrams, $35
Tartine Bakery’s Chad Robertson delivers the introduction to photographer Todd Selby’s intimate and quirky look at the homes, kitchens, and farms of culinary wonks, including local sea forager Kirk Lombard and Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese Food.
The Blue Bottle Craft of Coffee: Growing, Roasting, and Drinking, with Recipes, by James Freeman, Caitlin Freeman, and Tara Duggan
Ten Speed Press, $25
Whether you’re espresso-obsessed or learning the art of the perfect drip, geek out with Blue Bottle Coffee founder James Freeman in this meticulous guide to a better brew. Wife and pastry chef Caitlin Freeman serves more than 30 recipes for coffee-friendly treats.
Secrets of the Best Chefs: Recipes, Techniques, and Tricks from America’s Greatest Cooks, by Adam Roberts, Artisan, $28
Known for his popular blog The Amateur Gourmet, Adam Roberts interviewed 50 great American chefs, including Bay Area icons (Daniel Patterson of Coi and Gary Danko among them), to curate 150 signature recipes geared for the home cook.
Bouchon Bakery, by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel, Artisan, $50
This 400-pager packs in recipes and drool-worthy pictures of spins on French favorites, including croissants and financiers, as well as some American classics, such as oatmeal raisin cookies.
Vietnamese Home Cooking, by Charles Phan, Ten Speed Press, $35
Charles Phan’s The Slanted Door is legendary, along with its shaking beef. Phan’s first cookbook, though, goes far beyond recipes with invaluable techniques, like how to stir-fry, season a clay pot, and select the best ingredients.
SPQR: Modern Italian Food and Wine, by Shelley Lindgren and Matthew Accarrino, with Kate Leahy, Ten Speed Press, $35
Part travelogue, part cookbook, and part wine guide, this book takes you through central and northern Italian cuisine by following the roads of the Roman Empire. Accarrino’s modern recipes and Lindgren’s deep wine knowledge make for a perfect pairing.
Pure Vanilla: Irresistible Recipes and Essential Techniques, by Shauna Sever
Quirk Books, $23
Move over chocolate: This snappily written homage to the underrated flavor and its many forms and applications will inspire you to whip up such bean-filled treats as vanilla waffles for breakfast, vanilla cream pie for dessert, and crème anglaise for all those moments in between.
This article was published in 7x7's December/January issue. Click here to subscribe.