If you have friends who consider themselves foodies, they love everything about food. Here are some food books that can ornament any foodie coffee table and you can get a great recipe or two!
On Cooking by Sarah R. Labensky etc, really breaks down basic and some not so basic cooking techniques. I found an older edition during my clinical rotation at School Food-I spent the boring days learning tips from these pages. Easy to follow and comprehensive!
Mexico: The Cookbook by Margarita Carrillo Arronte- We recently had the pleasure of meeting Chef Margarita Carrillo Arronte (Read our interview here!) and she was a gracious and charming as you can imagine. She has spent a lifetime researching and cooking Mexican cuisine and bringing it to the rest of the world in this book.
Di Palo's Guide to the Essential Foods of Italy: 100 Years of Wisdom and Stories from Behind the Counter. We spent the day in the Di Palo store and Lou taught me to be a snob about Fior di Latte- and not to compare it to Mozzarella di Bufula which is its own entity. We ate, we drank, we made this video (Watch video here!). This store tells the story of their family and their expertise speaks of their love of Italian food.
Saveur: The New Classics Cookbook by Editors of Saveur Magazine- over 1000 recipes and editor favorites to celebrate their 20 year Anniversary, A smorgasbord of recipes for every occasion and the story behind the meal. Love stories.
Historic Heston by Heston Blumenthal delves into historical gastronomy with Medeival to Late Victorian British cuisine, full of beautiful photography and some surprises about English food namely that it doesn't have to be boring. Gorgeous binding.