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Savoring the Top 100 Cookbooks: A Sleepy Culinary Countdown

In the latest episode of Sleep Lists, "A Culinary Countdown to Sleep: Drifting Off with the Top 100 Cookbooks," we embark on a delightful list that I found curated by Shortform. I’m not really sure how they came up with the list. It seems to have been pulled strongly from Amazon based on their sales information and adorned with a few recommendations from a select group of experts that they chose. As you’ll learn I might have come up with some different additions for the list, but it is solid enough that I wanted to share it with our listeners.


Cookbooks from Mom's Kitchen

As we immerse ourselves in the culinary wonders of the Top 100 Cookbooks, it's heartening for me to spot familiar titles that once graced my mother's kitchen. Classics like "Joy of Cooking" and the ever-charming Julia Child's work bring a nostalgic flavor to the list for me. I was pleased to see that, my beloved grandmother's "Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook" has earned its place, though the updated version you buy today won’t be as good because it doesn’t come complete with her handwritten notes. Nor will have the recipes she lovingly taped in to the book which she had cut out from the local newspaper. Surprisingly, to me at least the classic Betty Crocker cookbook, while a staple in my collection, didn't make the cut of this fine list.


Multiple Appearances

Some remarkable women have left an indelible mark, with their work appearing more than once on the list. Let's give credit to the culinary mavens who've made significant contributions—authors like Julia Child, Ina Garten, and of course Martha Stewart who is still influencing our homes today. In a surprising twist, at least to me, Jamie Oliver has managed to carve out a significant space on the list, with four titles. As someone who remembers well the radical, cheeky and frankly titillating nature of his ‘The Naked Chef’ show, I am happy to see he has found significant success over the decades. Good on him. I also noticed Yotam Ottolenghi made several appearances and I had to practice his name several times. You can hear that on my out takes reel exclusively for Patreon supporters.


Diverse Flavors and Cultures

The Top 100 Cookbooks list offers a delectable mix of flavors, spanning different times, tones, and cultures. From traditional favorites to contemporary delights, it provides a feast for the senses. From jailhouse meals to posh banquets – this list has it covered. However, it's important to note that while diverse, the list is not be globally comprehensive. There is plenty of room for the list to expand into more cuisines of culture from around the world and I for one would welcome that shift!


I hope you will join me for episode 3 of season 3. We will savor the richness this wonderful list has to offer. Hoping that not only would these books fill our kitchens but also and more importantly make for perfect bedtime listening. Together we will relax, and let the ideas of delicious dreams drift you off to sleep. Sweet dreams, Sleeplisters! 🌙✨

Signing off with lots of love,



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