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Need to Have: Single-Minded Cookbooks

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I have a thing for cookbooks. My shelves run the gamut, from a tattered copy of Peg Bracken’s 1960 I Hate to Cook Book to more recent acquisitions like Yotam Ottolenghi’s PlentyI read them like novels, absorbing each author’s particular voice and idiosyncrasies, and file away recipes as inspiration. 

Now I’ve got my eye on three new additions for my collection. My friend Nick Fauchald recently launched Short Stack Editions, a series of gorgeous, delightfully compact, single-ingredient books. For each of the volumes (first up: Strawberries, Tomatoes, and Eggs), he tapped amazing chefs like Susan Spungen, the founding food editor at Martha Stewart Living, to Ian Knauer, a former Gourmet editor and author of The Farm.

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My Non-Resolution For 2013? Cook Up a Storm: Well-Balanced

You wouldn’t know it from how much we talk about cookies, but Birchbox staffers are a pretty healthy bunch. We love our veggies and mind-clearing workouts, and are always up to try the latest fitness class or nutrition bar. Which is why we have new regular column: Well-Balanced. Check back weekly for our latest wellness obsession.image

This week’s brown bag lunch, adapted from chef Yotam Ottolenghi.

Last year, around this time, I vowed to write a weekly wellness-focused column. Let the record show that I only made it eight posts before Well-Balanced quietly bit the dust. Well, dear readers, it’s a new year and I am back.

And what better time to focus on wellness? This month’s Birchbox theme is Best Year Ever (don’t forget the accompanying fist pump). It’s not about drastic resolutions—we’re more interested in the small changes we can make that add up to major daily happiness. For me, that means refocusing on the things I love, starting with the kitchen. One of my non-resolutions for 2013 is to cook more. Since I tend to gravitate toward colorful, seasonal recipes (more veggies, less meat), it automatically helps me eat more healthfully. I also save money by bringing leftovers to lunch (and really, I can out-salad a veggie bar like Chop’t or Tossed any day). 

The best way I’ve found to stay motivated to cook is to surround myself with delicious inspiration. Click through for three of my favorite new cookbooks (and some must-try recipes!).

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