Sure, an old cookbook is a great way to feel nostalgic about those old recipes your grandmother or mother loved to make for Thanksgiving. But have you ever stopped to think about why using an old cookbook as you prepare this year’s Thanksgiving feast might be a great idea, even apart from the nostalgia it evokes? When you buy a cookbook that is from the late 1970s or earlier, there are a variety of advantages.
- 1. Healthier Ingredients. Older cookbooks actually feature real food ingredients! Instead of the quick and easy convenience foods that have taken over the kitchen in recent years, an old cookbook will stick to the basics. Instead of pre-packaged mixes and syrups, an old cookbook will let you cook with classic kitchen staples, such as butter, flour, sugar, and healthy herbs and spices that you are likely to have on hand already. So serve your family real food this Thanksgiving by trying out some recipes from an old cookbook. And who knows, you might enjoy the experiment so much you decide to eliminate pre-packaged convenience ingredients that are loaded up with GMOs and artificial additives from your family’s diet for good.
- 2. Skip the Gadgets and Stick to the Basics. As hard as this may be to believe in today’s gadget heavy kitchen, people actually cooked full meals before the advent of electricity. Before we outfitted our kitchens with microwave ovens, electric mixers, multi-speed blenders, and high-tech food processors, people mixed, chopped, and blended by hand. Return to your pre-gadget roots this Thanksgiving with recipes that use only “old-fashioned” tools, like knives, spoons, and hand whisks. Consider skipping the microwave as well and returning to more basic cooking methods. Best of all, once you master the art of cooking without electric gadgets, you’ll be able to whip up a great meal even if the electricity goes out.
- 3. Add Variety to Your Kitchen Repertoire. Newer cookbooks are heavy on photographs but light on content. In an older cookbook, however, you will be more likely to find variations on recipes as well as recipes that feature fewer overall ingredients. You will also find more from scratch recipes in an older cookbook. Show off your cooking prowess with a variety of “new” recipes from an old cookbook this Thanksgiving.
- 4. Save Some Money. A new cookbook will cost at least $20, but you can find an old cookbook in a thrift store or used book shop for under a dollar. Use the money you save on your cookbook to add something special to your Thanksgiving dinner menu this year.