Beyond Literary Landscapes—Global Cookbooks

From my early beginnings as a young introvert, the public library has always been a bit of a refuge.  Years later, not much has changed, albeit with an additional affinity for endless hours spent scouring second-hand bookstores to add to my ever-growing “to-read” pile.

From one bookworm to another, this column will be underscoring and outlining various literary genres, authors, and recent reads and can serve as an introduction for those unfamiliar with these works, as a refresher for long-time aficionados, and maybe as an inspiration for readers to share their own suggested topics.  Do you have a topic that you would like covered in this column?  Feel free to contact me for an interview and a feature in an upcoming column.


This week’s column is a bit different from what readers may be used to.  Instead of focusing on a genre, theme, or author, we take a look at some bestselling cookbooks of recent years.

In particular, we consider a wide variety of cuisines by authors from around the globe.


Some examples of contemporary, bestselling cookbooks include My Mexico City Kitchen: Recipes and Convictions by Gabriela Cámara and Malena Watrous, Asian Dumplings: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More by Andrea Nguyen, and Made in India: Recipes from an Indian Family Kitchen by Meera Sodha.

Additional popular cookbooks include Salt Fat Acid Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking by Samin Nosrat, Koreaworld by Deuki Hong and Matt Rodbard, and Yawd: Modern Afro-Caribbean Recipes by Adrian Forte.


These cookbooks feature recipes from a wide variety of global cuisines and countries, including Mexico, Vietnam, China, India, South Korea, the Caribbean region, and the United States.


Although these cookbooks are contemporary, they are quickly becoming classic stapes in kitchens across the world.


On the most basic level, cookbooks may be of interest to AU who enjoy experimenting in the kitchen.  However, these particular cookbooks may also be appealing to students who would like to learn more about the historical contexts of their favourite dishes.


AU’s wide range of diverse courses make it easy to study this topic in depth.  Courses related to cookbooks are available in a variety of disciplines, including one’s that may fit into your Degree Works.  (Always check with an AU counsellor to see if these particular courses fulfill your personal graduation requirements!)

AU students interested in learning more about this topic may enroll in NUTR 330: Introductory Nutrition, a senior-level, three-credit course, which “is a survey course that provides the scientific fundamentals of the current understanding of nutrition.”  (Although no prerequisites are required, senior-level high school chemistry and biology courses are recommended).  Happy reading!