Cookbooks Galore

How many cookbooks does it take to look up a recipe on the Internet? That is not a cunning riddle or a crafty logic problem. The simple and undeniable answer is “zero.”

And yet…

We are in the middle of a move. Although we are going only a short distance geographically, each item we own still needs to be boxed or bagged, toted, and unpacked. This presents a wonderful opportunity for downsizing. An obvious target are the shelves of cookbooks in my kitchen. After careful consideration and decisive deliberation, I discarded a grand total of – one – cookbook.

Thirteen years ago, in a frenzy of tidying, I asked the following question in a Susan’s Musing:

In my zeal to give away or throw out superfluous items I have been asking myself, “If we were to move, would we pay money to store or ship this?”

I now know the answer to this question when it comes to cookbooks, and it is ‘yes.’ Although I turn to the Internet when faced with a mysterious cut of meat or an unfamiliar vegetable, looking at shelves of cookbooks makes me smile, even when I don’t open them. Some women collect salt shakers or items in the shape of cows. I collect books—even cookbooks that haven’t been skimmed through in years. The boxes filled with them are heavy; the shelf space is at a premium. Nonetheless, my cookbooks and I are still together after all these years.

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