The pride of my cookbook collection.
It's packing days at Casa Murrieta. Asbestos removal for the downstairs remodel starts Monday. My office -- computer, guitar, shotgun, books, Oly keg -- is going into storage.
I packed 74 food books this morning -- cookbooks, wine books, baking books, cake decorating books and one that contains nothing but recipes for dog treats. All the out-dated Zagat guides? They make great kindling.
Some, like "Larousse Gastronomique," I've packed and unpacked from Santa Barbara to Sacramento to San Francisco to Tacoma. Others, like Danny Meyer's "Setting the Table," are publishers' gimmes I thought I'd read and write about but never got around to.
Except for my coveted first edition of "A Treasury of Great Recipes" by Vincent Price and his wife, Mary, I'd trade them all for compact discs faster than you can turn to page 262 of "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." I rarely crack half of the books I own.
Which leads me to a simmering question: Why do we hang onto unread cookbooks?