Williams Sonoma is one of my favorite stores for kitchen and housewares. However, I have to limit my escapades to this California-based store because it’s – to put it bluntly- so damn expensive!
One thing I love about the store – aside from their awesome European servingware collection – is their cookbook series. They’ve got cookbooks for just about anything gourmet – from appetizers to desserts, and from pasta and fish to chicken. They also have books about cooking essentials, like roasting, grilling, and one-pot meals. My husband and I have several of these books, including the Chicken and the Soups and Pasta from the Food Made Fast series. We love them and use them quite a bit throughout the year. And, not only are the recipes fantastic and easy to follow, the pictures are extremely appetizing!
Beyond the basics, Williams Sonoma goes cultural with it’s Foods Around the World series. In this series, you can learn about French, Asian, Mediterranean, and Latin cooking, etc. The series also branches into specific cities and the gastronomic standards associated with these areas, including Paris, Florence, and Rome. They even have an exclusive Taste of the World cookbook that includes 225 recipes from Europe, Asia, the Americas, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East.
So many cookbooks, so little money!! Obviously, if I bought the entire collection, I would be dropping close to $1,000 – who has that kind of money to spend on cookbooks, even if they are French? And that brings me to my final point about these great books – they don’t have to cost you a dime to use! No, they don’t publish the recipes online (but how cool would that be?). However, many times you can find the books at your local public library. My library has more than half of the Williams Sonoma cookbook collection. Plus, if there is one that my library does not carry, I can request it from another library for free, or ask the library to order it – again, for free! This has saved me an enormous amount of money and has left me with a fantastic collection of fancy recipes. And there’s no shame in being frugal and fancy at the same time!