4. Regional cooking
I keep Midwestern-related books together on the shelf, followed by other regions, such as Southern or Northwestern. In many cookbook stores, these would fall under the overall category of “American.”
Enough said. Needs a space of its own.
6. General cooking and oversized books
These often tend to be the biggest cookbooks, and I keep mine on the bottom shelf to accommodate their weight and height. 7. Entertaining
Whether it’s appetizers, seasonal menus or holidays, books with recipes intended for company are placed together.
All those books that focus on a particular utensil or method are gathered here: grilling, braising, cast iron pans.
9. Single subject
These are defined by their single ingredient, which I alphabetize. Mine include volumes on butter, lemons, nuts, potatoes, salt and pepper, etc.
This is broken into two subcategories: Those books that are compendiums of world dishes and those by individual countries, which are alphabetized. “The Best Recipes in the World” lands in the first subcategory, Italian books in the second. For some countries, I have my own sub-subsets (Scandinavian books, further delineated into Norwegian, Swedish and the like).
These books overlap with other categories, but there are enough in my collection that keeping them together is helpful.
12. Food history and reference
Whether it’s the history of spice or how to define cooking terms, I keep books on similar subjects together.
13. Food issues