Christmas is a time for over-indulgence, be it fresh seafood, antipasti or lashings of cheese. And so, to celebrate all things food, this year we’re stuffing our stockings with the best cookbooks of 2018, to inspire your next kitchen cook off. From the beginner baker to the cook who’s comfortable in the kitchen, these cookbooks are sure to satisfy anyone’s appetite…
At My Table: A Celebration of Home Cooking by Nigella Lawson
“Life is complicated; cooking doesn’t have to be,” says the celebrity chef in her eleventh cookbook – and we couldn’t agree more! After this inspiring intro, Lawson dishes up more than 100 recipes. Flick through the pages, and you’ll spot all-veggie delights like sweet potato tacos sitting pretty next to chilli mint lamb culets and meatballs with orzo. For dessert, we bet your friend will have a beady eye on the sticky toffee pudding.
Cravings: Hungry for More by Chrissy Tiegen
If you follow the world’s wittiest woman, you’ll remember when she asked the Twittersphere for ripe bananas to make banana bread with. Well, the mum-of-two knows a thing or two about cravings, and she’s included the recipe for that in her new cookbook – which is a celebration of food and the happiness it brings. The theme is comfort food: think pad Thai carbonara, and a Hawaiian-inspired bacon pull-a-part.
Avocaderia: Avocado Recipes for a Healthier, Happier Life by Alessandro Biggi, Francesco Brachetti and Alberto Gramigni
The avo obsession isn’t going anywhere. This cookbook is an ode to the creamy fruit. By the guys who run Avocaderia, the world’s first all-avocado bar, it goes beyond smashed avo to offer 100 recipes that star the superfood. It draws inspo from Mexico to Morocco and Italy, and moves smoothly from breakfast, lunch and dinner to dessert. The avo burger is a must-try, as is the avo-lime cheesecake.
Cook Like A Pro: Recipes & Tips for Home Cooks by Ina Garten
In this cookbook, the much-loved host of The Barefoot Contessaguides you through cooking like a pro in your not-so-professional kitchen. Garten offers tips on picking ingredients, plating up meals, and knowing when your roasts are ready. Then there are the recipes. From red wine-braised short ribs to vanilla brioche bread pudding, your mouth will be watering.
Mastering Pizza: The Art and Practice of Handmade Pizza, Focaccia, and Calzone by Marc Vetri and David Joachim
Pizza is one of life’s simplest pleasures, and this cookbook teaches you how to nail it at home. Written by a chef, Marc Vetri, and food writer, David Joachim, it takes your tastebuds on a trip through the different types of dough from Naples’ soft bases to Rome’s thin, crispy ones, before diving into pizza toppings.
Vegan 100: Over 100 Recipes from the Avant-Garde Vegan by Gaz Oakley
With more than 500,000 subscribers, Oakley is a YouTube sensation who’s on a mission to prove that plant-based diets aren’t boring. And this cookbook offers 100+ reasons why. Perfect for fully-fledged vegans or those who dabble in Meatless Mondays, the rainbow recipes include maple pumpkin pie pancakes, baked coconut and vanilla ‘cheesecake’ and ‘steak’ wellington.
Season: Big Flavors, Beautiful Food by Nik Sharma
This is a cookbook, but the photography is so beautiful that it could easily sit in that section of the bookstore. The Indian-born cook made a splash on the culinary scene with the bold flavours on his blog, A Brown Table. His debut cookbook continues that theme, taking you on an edible journey from Mumbai to his current home in California. The result is 270 incredible recipes, like steak with orange peel, chat masala-grilled pork chops and spiced chocolate-chip cookies.
Healthyish: A Cookbook with Seriously Satisfying, Truly Simple, Good-For-You (but not too Good-For-You) Recipes for Real Life by Lindsay Maitland Hunt
This cookbook is all about balance. Hunt is a recipe developer who set out to make healthy eating as delicious as it is nutritious, with a touch of decadence. Her guilt-free recipes are simple, and use easily accessible ingredients. We suggest starting with the peanut butter granola spiced chicken and chickpea flatbread with cucumber-dill tzatziki…
Rose’s Baking Basics by Rose Levy Beranbaum
Buying for a baker? They’ll love this book, which is the latest from the legend who wrote The Cake Bible and The Pie and Pastry Bible. Her attention to detail is insane. Along with step-by-step instructional photos, every recipe has a “mise en place” section with tips of the trade, like taking the butter out of the fridge 30 minutes before you start baking. There are 600 recipes in total, from brownies and birthday cakes to homemade bread.
Let's Eat France! by Francois-Regis Gaudy
Gift-hunting for the Francophile in your life? The search ends now! This beast of a book – it weighs 2.7 kg – is jam-packed with everything you’ve ever wanted to know about French food. Recipes aside, it’s sprinkled with maps, details of the traditional cheeses, breads and knives (yep, really!) of each province, plus personality profiles of top French chefs. Gaudy’s a food critic, journalist and radio host, so it’s safe to say he knows what he’s talking about.