Tag Archives: sadly lacking in book shelf space

Our Groaning Cookbook Shelves

Ward and I have run into a major dilemma: we’ve run out of room in our cookbook bookcase.

A few months ago, Ward confiscated shelf space in another bookcase for all the new cookbook additions he received at Christmas. But frankly, there isn’t any more spare shelf space anywhere. So no more shelf space for him to confiscate.

What this really means is, no more shelf space, period. For any kind of book.

We’ve resorted to squeezing books into any reasonably sized gaps we can find. It works, although it does make for somewhat messy looking shelves.

Unfortunately, most cookbooks tend to be on the large size.

Take Nigella Lawson’s Nigellissima.

Nigellissima

Nigellissima is a beautiful book. It is also quite a large book. So large, we haven’t been able to find a gap the right size anywhere on our shelves.

So Nigellissima has been semi-permanently residing on our coffee table. (As a matter of fact, all manner of books have taken up semi-permanent residence on our coffee table, and honestly, there’s not much room for anything else, like coffee cups.)

The good news? I’ve discovered a very temporary solution to our cookbook problem.

The Library

When Candace posted her review of D’Lish Deviled Eggs, by Kathy Casey, I decided to check the Toronto Public Library to see if I could borrow a copy. Turned out I could, and so I did.

Deviled eggs

And I’m very glad I did. In addition to delicious recipes, it turns out this book, while available in hardcover, is small, in terms of its physical dimensions!

Which means it’s on my to-buy list, the next time I engage in a book buying spree. Which we all know I shouldn’t be doing, given the lack of bookshelf space here. But I think we all also know I’m not going to let a thing like lack of space stop me, right?

Ebook Versions

I’ve gotten used to viewing recipes electronically, since we subscribe to a few cooking magazines through Zinio. They look great on Zinio’s iPad app, and the iPad sits nicely on the cookbook stand in the kitchen so no problems there.

So why not ebook versions of cookbooks, I thought?

Well, actually, I didn’t go through this particular thought process. What really happened was this: I was cruising Amazon online, looking for cookbooks to buy Ward for his birthday earlier this month. And I came across Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi, by Yotam Ottolenghi.

Plenty

And as luck would have it, the Kindle version was on sale. I think it was $2.99, although it might have been $3.99.  (Unfortunately, it’s no longer on sale – I just checked, and it’s now $9.80. Still a good deal, though.)

So I decided to get it, sort of as a test case for ebook cookbooks.  And I’m very glad I did. The book reads beautifully on my iPad Kindle app, and the bonus? The recipes in the Table of Contents are hyperlinked to the recipes in the book, so it just takes a tap of your finger and you’re on the right page.

While nothing really beats a print copy of a  beautiful full-colour cookbook, ebook versions do work just as well for the purposes of cooking. With our lack of shelf space, I think this will be an ideal temporary solution.

But in the meantime, I’ve been scoping out various spots around the condo where we might be able to squeeze in another bookcase or two …

I’m participating in Weekend Cooking at Beth Fish Reads with this post. For more delicious food-related posts, hop on over to check out many more wonderful foodie reads!