I've had food on my mind a lot lately (LATELY? Please. It starts on my mind and ends up on my hips...). I'm about to be a librarian, officially, and one of the things I notice in our non-fiction section is the number of cookbooks that have a cover photo of the chef/celebrity cook grinning as they play with utensils or for that matter, just posing next to their car (Guy Fieri) or bent over a pile of vegetables on the counter, looking not the slightest bit engaged in what they're doing (or supposed to be doing). It's gotten to the point where I start judging the inside of the cookbook by the percentage of cover art devoted to the food as opposed to the writer of the cookbook or featured celebrity cook/chef.
Am I crazy?
One of my favorite cookbooks of recent vintage is My Indian Kitchen by Nayak and Turkel (Tuttle, 2011). VERY few pics of the author (I don't have my copy handy to be sure) but there is no doubt that the food is the star here. Stunning photographs of the food and its ingredients. THIS is a cookbook for anyone who wants to prepare Indian food in their home.
Shy away from cookbooks that spend more time fawning over the author than the food.
*--from On the Town; music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, 1944.