Readers share their picks.
Growing up in Florida and Georgia caused me to appreciate the local and regional food and recipes. However, growing up male when and where and how I did precluded me from ever having to select, prepare, or cook those foods and dishes. The women did that. Along came the women's movement and other enlightening forces, and now I find that if I want a hoe cake or a pecan pie or pilau, it's up to me. I turn to Cross Creek Cookery by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (1942). Even though she was a Northerner and an immigrant to Florida, she gathered the information about the kind of fare I grew up on, devised recipes, and compiled them into a wonderful book. – Bob Fulford, Tallahassee, Fla.
After looking at inns for years, last July, my husband, Don, and I decided to retire from our jobs in Washington, D.C., and head up to Vermont. We bought a small, six-room bed and breakfast just outside Burlington. A parting gift from a dear friend was a copy of Morning Food: Breakfasts, Brunches, and More for Savoring the Best Part of the Day by Margaret S. Fox and John B. Bear (1990). Not a morning has gone by that I have not made something delectable from that book, be it cinnamon rolls, goat cheese frittata, or, my latest favorite that utilizes fresh rhubarb from my back garden: strawberry and rhubarb crisp. Thanks to "Morning Food," I have felt brave enough to venture into the breakfast/brunch area of foods and experiment with crepes filled with local goat cheeses or serve homemade mint ice cream with fresh local blueberries. What a treasure!– Elisabeth Huber, Jericho, Vt.
Healthy Cooking for Two (or just you) by Frances Price (1995). Simple, easy recipes, unfailingly delicious, with occasional notes by Ms. Price and suggestions about what else to serve. I wish she would publish another!
– Kathy Gallagher, St. James, Mo.
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