I am a rather compulsive collector of cookbooks. As Phaidon is one of my favourite publishers when it comes to food and the life, I was intrigued by one of their more recent releases, What to Cook and How to Cook It. Written by food writer and cook Jane Hornby, What to Cook… is filled with recipes for old favourites – such as simple potpies, curries, omlettes and cookies – which are aimed specifically at inexperienced and amateur cooks.
But let’s be frank: who buys a cookbook for the recipes only? Not me. The design and photography must also be appealing and truly showcase the food. Fortunately, What to Cook… is an aesthetic delight with photography that breaks down the ingredients and steps in the process of preparing each meal. It’s slightly reminiscent of Carl Kleiner’s photography for Ikea’s Homemade is Best and is beautiful in its functional simplicity.