Tuesday, April 16, 2013

When the Cookbooks Almost Took Over the Kitchen

For years turning into decades, I have studiously kept my cookbook shopping to a minimum.  If I bought a new cookbook, I would donate an old one that I didn't cook from that often.  I don't know why I felt I should keep the cookbook clutter to a such a minimum.  I mean, cooking is one of my favorite hobbies.  I have no problem hoarding beads or fabric or art books, but cookbooks I thought I should keep in check.  I allowed myself 2 shelves next to our stove and that was it. 

But something snapped in me at the end of last year and I started going cookbook crazy.  I discovered the Jerusalem born chef Yotam Ottolenghi for a start.  I also acquired some cookbooks as gifts and I started buying Heidi Swanson's cookbooks (of the 101 Cookbooks blog) after following her recipes online for several years.  The cookbooks started over taking the kitchen island. 

Simultaneously, I was losing space on my counter.  The one major flaw of our kitchen is that there is no proper pantry, so I have to tuck food away into nooks and crannies.  I finally realized I could move the cookbooks out of the way and clear the space at the same time.

Ikea to the rescue!  Now, I actually did not want to shop at Ikea.  I tried to shop local.  I tried to find interesting modern furniture from new and used shops near my home and came up with absolutely nothing.  A few stained, wobbly shelves at a couple of different "antique" (read: junk) stores and country kitchen yech at the couple of local house boutiques.  So I compromised and went to Ikea.  

And I have already filled up my new bookshelf!  I thought I would have a ton of space to fill in a few more cookbooks.  

The counter looks great now and the oatmeal and extra spices are up off the counter as they should be.

Now this time, I really mean it, no more cookbooks than what I can store in this shelf.  Let's see if I can stick to this for another 10 years.


  1. Looks good! And such a nice surface to stack more cookbooks on...

  2. And I swear Vinnie has lost some weight!

  3. Ha! I think Vinnie's new diet is finally starting to work. (barely)