Makiko Itoh has been writing about Japanese food and culture for more than a decade. She runs the popular Japanese food blogs JustHungry.com and JustBento.com, writes a monthly food column for The Japan Times, and is the author of the bestselling Just Bento Cookbook. Born in Shinjuku, Tokyo, she has also lived in the UK, US, and Switzerland. She currently lives in Provence, France.
This is by far my favorite cookbook in English, for standard dishes in the French-American sphere. It has everything from my go-to recipes for Boston Baked Beans to pizza dough to choux pastry and more.
A big, fat volume with nary a picture in it (the only illustrated part is the section on how to build your own brick bread oven). Packed with all kinds of bread recipes. It even has a recipe for dog biscuits.
This book really taught me a lot about baking with whole grain flours. It also contains the instructions for desem, a bread that's proofed with natural yeasts only. It's been an on and off obsession of mine for more than 2 decades.
I have most of James Beard's cookbooks, but this is the one that gets used the most. It's my go-to for just about any kind of classic American dish, if it's not covered by Julia Child's The Way To Cook.
The ultimate community cookbook, from the ultimate multi-ethnic, multi-national American city. It makes me nostalgic for the years I lived in New York. Plus, all the recipes I've tried really work well.
I love the late Katsuyo Kobayashi, who was a marvelous home cook and a great teacher too. I have dozens of her books in Japanese, but this is the only one available in English. It's a great introduction to practical Japanese home cooking.
Originally published in 1962, it's the book I relied on first when I moved to Provence. I don't really use it for the recipes much anymore (although they are quite sound), but I still love to re-read her prose from time to time.
My mother was given a paperback edition of this book by a neighbor when we lived in England when I was a child. I still have that paperback, although it's in two pieces now, plus a couple of other copies of the same, as backups. There are several editions but they all give a fascinating look into British cookery, which has an unfairly bad reputation. Good British cooking is hearty and delicious.