I love cooking in winter. I enjoy being in the kitchen on colder days, far more than I do in the heat of summer. I’ve got five cookbooks that I have on rotate in cooler weather.
My all-time favourite is A Soup for Every Day by the team at New Covent Garden Food Co. If you’ve ever lived in London, you’ll know the brand. They sell ready-made soups, and I practically survived on them when I lived there.
As the name, suggests, there are 365 recipes in the book, all laid out seasonally (as we’re in the southern hemisphere, I just jump forward 6 months to get the correct season). The recipes are easy to follow and fail safe, and range from thick, hearty stew-like ones, to cold ones and even sweet ones you could serve for dessert!
Currently on sale for R60 from Reader’s Warehouse.
I love watching the Hemsley sister’s cooking show, and their book Hemsley & Hemsley Good + Simple is packed full of no-nonsense super healthy recipes that may not always be the quickest to prepare (although there are some super quick ones), but they always, always deliver on flavour. The Supercharged Store Cupboard soup has been made more times than any other.
R415 from Takealot.
Deliciously Ella Every Day by Ella Woodward is a plant based recipe book, and they are so delicious that if there were a book to turn you vegan, this would be it. Her chickpea, quinoa and turmeric curry is the stuff of dreams.
R353 from Loot.
My Low Carb Kitchen by Vickie de Beer is by my dear ex-colleague from Rooi Rose. When her son, Lucca was diagnosed with Type-1 diabetes, food editor, Vickie set about creating a programme to manage Luca’s blood glucose. But reducing your ‘bad’ (refined, processed) carb intake, you can boost your energy and reduce inflammation. It has handy weekly meal plans as well as shopping lists. I haven’t tried a recipe from the book that I didn’t like, and Vickie’s recipes are easy to follow and are packed full of flavour. The Quick Meals section is a godsend on busy days.
R275 from Exclusive Books.
The Middle Eastern Kitchen by Rukmini Iyer is a must have for anyone who loves Middle Eastern food as much as I do. The flavour combinations are completely mind-blowing. The Moroccan Chicken with Rice would be my death-row last meal (along with Chef Brad Ball’s beef tataki). It would be followed by the Roast Figs with Honey and Thyme.
It’s currently on sale for R60 from Loot.
And a sneaky extra (as it’s technically not a ‘cook’ book), is The Bartender’s Guide to Gin. Obviously this is a book for all seasons, but I love trying out the classic and modern cocktails from this book. The Singapore Sling is probably my favourite, but there are so many great recipes in here. If you love gin, and want to experiment with it, get your hands on a copy of this.
R96 from Makro.
What are your favourite winter cookbooks?