Sunday, December 2, 2012

Cookbook Challenge Wrap-Up

I joined Cynni's Cookbook Challenge back in October with hopes of cooking out of some never used cookbooks on my own shelves. I challenged myself to prepare one recipe from different cookbooks and ended up preparing eleven recipes in all--one or more from each of the five cookbook. Needless to say this was a very successful challenge for me. Here's a recap of the cookbooks and recipes I prepared over the last few weeks:

Butternut Shotglass Soup
First up was the delightfully artistic cookbook, Autumn by Susan Branch. I was delighted by how many readers who visited my post were already familiar with this author's books. Even more exciting, Susan Branch herself came by and left a lovely comment on the post. This was a huge thrill for me. I made two soup recipes from this cookbook--Butternut Shotglass Soup and Tomato Soup. I've even made the Tomato Soup three times since then.
Tomato Soup
Saffron Pilaf and Moghul Shrimp
in Cream Sauce and other sides
The second cookbook I pulled from my shelves was Indian Regional Cooking by Julie Sahini from which I prepared four recipes. I made Saffron Pilaf [Zaffron Pulao], Moghul Shrimp in Cream Sauce [Moghul Jheenga], Orange-Cinnamon Basmati Pilaf [Naarangi Pulao] and Chicken Korma [Murgh Korma]. All of the recipes were wonderful--I am especially fond of the rice dishes and will definitely make them again. I also plan to try even more recipes from this cookbook.

Pumpkin Cornmeal Griddle Cakes
Next, I grabbed The Pumpkin Cookbook edited by Nicola Hill from which I made Pumpkin-Cornmeal Griddle Cakes and Pumpkin, Chickpea and Banana Curry. The griddle cakes were just okay to my liking, but I loved the authentic Indian flavor of the curry dish. I posted the recipe in the review of the cookbook HERE and highly recommend you give it a try if you like Indian food--with or without the banana.

Apple Puff Pancake 
Over Thanksgiving weekend, I prepared a delicious Apple Puff Pancake from the cookbook Holiday Baking by Sara Perry. I adore this cookbook that includes a diverse collection of traditional and modern recipes for Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, Boxing Day, Kwanzaa and New Year's Eve and Day. I look forward to trying so many more recipes from this cookbook in the future. I highly recommend this one.

Beef Rouladen and Spätzle
Finally, I cooked two recipes from The German Cookery by Elizabeth Schuler. This is an old-fashioned style cookbook with very simple recipe instructions for authentic German dishes. I bought it so I could learn to cook some home style recipes that my German grandmother prepared for so many family meals during my childhood. I made Beef Rouladen [Rinderrouladen] and Spätzle. While the recipes I tried weren't quite like my Oma's, it sure felt comforting to prepare a meal of which I think my Oma would have been proud.

So I met the challenge of the Creative Croissant that required 3-5 recipes and then some! Since I made eleven recipes, I actually finished at the Swedish Chef level!

I hope you've been inspired to pull a rarely used cookbook off your shelves and start cooking from it!

Thanks, Cynni, for a fun and inspiring challenge! :)


  1. You did so good with this challenge! and you kept me getting hungry each time I read one of your reviews! Congrats on finishing the challenge.

  2. You did wonderfully with this challenge. Now I am going to have to pull out one of my lonely cookboks and try a few new recipes. But first I must go check the post with that curry recipe. Thanks

  3. So many nice looking dishes here...I would love the apple pancake and get out of my way for that shrimp dish!!

  4. I think you're awesome to have done the challenge and finished so well! (Though when you wrote Swedish Chef I immediately thought of the Muppets.) Will you continue to use your never/hardly used cookbooks?

    I hope you have a great week!

  5. Thanks, all! It was a fun challenge. :)

    Brandy, Ha! I thought of the Muppets when I wrote that! ;)
    I'm definitely going to continue cooking from some of the cookbooks regularly--the Indian one all year long and the Autumn and Holiday Baking this time of year. The Pumpkin one probably not so much. The German one, maybe just one or two other recipes.

    Hope you have a great week too! :)

  6. Wow! I wish I would have found this before now. It sounds very cool and I love finding "new" recipes in my cookbooks.

  7. Very awesome challenge, Christine! I bet your family was happy as well ;) You should definitively continue on this track :)

  8. Oh my gosh these are all fantastic!!!! I'm so impressed by how much you were able to get done and with the variety of the cookbooks that you used. One of my goals for 2013 will be to use my cookbooks more often--kind of like the appliances where I pick one book a month. Some of them are getting dusty. ;)

    Butternut Shotglass Soup, huh? I have to know if you had more than one!

  9. naysue, It was a fun challenge--I'm very pleased with my productivity. I'm sure there are cookbook challenges out there. Hmm.. I'll click around and see if anyone is hosting one. If not, maybe that'll be a fun project for me to do. I'll have to see..

    Thanks for visiting! :)

    nath, Yeah, my family was happy to reap the rewards of this challenge. ha!

    Trish, Thanks! I surprised myself with this one, that's for sure. I like your goal--I am going to try to do the same. Are you devising a cookbook challenge in 2013?

    If you must know, I had at least three shots of butternut soup. :P


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