My family knows me well. They have generously given me many cookbooks as presents. I love it! Last year Monica gave me a copy of the beautiful fundraiser cookbook that she complied and edited. She knows how much hard work goes into putting one of these together. She saw me do the very same thing with our church cookbook when she was a very young girl. (And when I was domestic!) But she has done a much better job and used a publishing house with hers.
Michael Ruhlman, author of "Charcuterie" (now in its 5th printing!) has made his suggestions for holiday cookbook gifts on his blog: http://ruhlman.typepad.com/
(I am sadly blogger challenged but if you can Google, you will find his wonderfully written food blog.)
I'd like to share a list of my own cookbook gift suggestions:
There's a brand new edition of Joy of Cooking. If yours looks like mine, the spine is bent and the pages are stained.
Anything by Julia Child. My favorite is Baking With Julia, with some excellent recipes for croissants and brioche.
Anything by Lidia Bastianich. That woman is the sweetest and friendliest chef I have ever met.
I missed Ina Garten when she was out here in Southern California recently, but any of her cookbooks would do nicely. They are beautifully photographed, the food looks spectacular.
King Arthur Flour has a new whole grain baking book.
"Baking from My Home to Yours" by Dorie Greenspan is another new book on my list. She is one of my favorite writers, author of the Pierre Herme pastry books.
The Bread Baker's Apprentice, Beard on Bread, The Bread Bible, The Italian Baker, are perfect for your serious bread baking friends.
Diana Kennedy has written some of the best cookbooks on Mexican food and its history.
And I will add a shameless promotion here with a personal recommendation for any of Chef Robert Wemischner's books, you can find them on Amazon.
I could go on forever, but you get the idea. Have fun shopping for the foodies in your life!