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Best Cookbooks of All-Time

The Perfect Cookbook for Italian Daughters-in-Law

Courtesy Phaidon Press

Getting a chef to pick a favorite cookbook is like asking a parent to choose her most-loved child. But F&W pressed great cooks around the country to reveal their top picks of all-time.

The Chef: Eric Bechard

The Book: The Silver Spoon by Phaidon Press, 1950

“I liked the idea of this gift that Italian mothers-in-law gave their new daughters-in-law,” Bechard says. “It gives 300 ingredients and has three or four recipes per ingredient. Like lamb: It gives an overview with the cuts, then several recipes on how to use a braising cut, a roasting cut, a grilling cut. Same thing with vegetables—four recipes on how to use eggplant in its various forms. I got it when I was a young cook, and it also helped me think about different approaches to the same ingredient.”

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