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Sophie Dahl's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Sophie Dahl recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Sophie Dahl's favorite book recommendations of all time.


Roast Chicken and Other Stories

"Good cooking depends on two things: common sense and good taste."

In England, no food writer's star shines brighter than Simon Hopkinson's. His breakthrough Roast Chicken and Other Stories was voted the most useful cookbook ever by a panel of chefs, food writers, and consumers. At last, American cooks can enjoy endearing stories from the highly acclaimed food writer and his simple yet elegant recipes.

In this richly satisfying culinary narrative, Hopkinson shares his unique philosophy on the limitless possibilities of cooking. With its friendly tone backed by the...
Recommended by Sophie Dahl, and 1 others.

Sophie DahlI love the combination of food and stories. He is very funny, very English and very no nonsense. He was chef at Bibendum and La Tante Claire and has a really extraordinary cooking background, yet he cooks really homely food and describes it in the least snooty way. With this book he has broken it up into ingredients so you have, for instance, garlic, saffron, anchovies, and in each chapter there... (Source)

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The Kitchen Diaries

Classic cookery writing from the award-winning food writer and author of bestselling autobiography, ‘Toast’.

‘The food in “The Kitchen Diaries” is simply what I eat at home. The stuff I make for myself, for friends and family, for Sunday lunch and for snacks. These are meals I make when I am having mates over or when I want to surprise, seduce or show off. This is what I cook when I’m feeling energetic, lazy, hungry or late. This is the food that makes up my life, both the Monday to Friday stuff and that for weekends and special occasions.’

‘Much of it is...
Recommended by Sophie Dahl, and 1 others.

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Note: this is a US edition of this cookbook.

"Cooking is not about just joining the dots, following one recipe slavishly and then moving on to the next," says British food writer Nigella Lawson. "It's about developing an understanding of food, a sense of assurance in the kitchen, about the simple desire to make yourself something to eat." Lawson is not a chef, but "an eater." She writes as if she's conversing with you while beating eggs or mincing garlic in your kitchen. She explains how to make the basics, such as roast chicken, soup stock, various sauces, cake, and ice cream....
Recommended by Sophie Dahl, Nigel Slater, and 2 others.

Sophie DahlIt was her warm self-deprecating lovely tone that really engaged me. I loved the way that she described food. It was just this wonderful, friendly, easy rolling-off-the-page kind of writing. (Source)

Nigel SlaterIf I could keep only one cookbook, this would be it. There’s an intelligence to the way she writes, and she expects a certain intelligence of her readers as well. (Source)

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The Pooh Cook Book

Recommended by Sophie Dahl, and 1 others.

Sophie DahlSo this book was a really big part of the culinary associations of my childhood, as was my paternal grandmother, who I called Gee-Gee. When I was tiny she used to send me letters with recipes which I now have framed in my kitchen. (Source)

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The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook

Toklas's rich mixture of menus and memories of meals shared with such famous friends as Wilder, Picasso, and Hemingway, originally published in 1954.
Recommended by Sophie Dahl, Ruth Reichl, and 2 others.

Sophie DahlThe anecdotal part of it is a dream and each recipe tells a story. (Source)

Ruth ReichlIf you ask most people about the Alice B Toklas cookbook, the recipe that comes immediately to mind is marijuana brownies. It needs to be rescued from that. (Source)

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