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Travel by Tongue in 2021 with These International Cookbooks

The "Tangines & Couscous," "Bottom of the Pot," and "Sababa" book covers.
Ryland Peters & Small/Flatiron Books/Avery

While traveling might not top your plans for the new year, there are other fun ways you can explore the stunning (and tasty) cultures of other countries. Your kitchen is the perfect place to start your journey.

We’ve rounded up some of our favorite international cookbooks. You’ll love digging into the history and diverse culture of these foods, and learning from the authors through their beautiful stories.

Bottom of the Pot: Persian Recipes

Celebrate a faultless combination of cultural history and family recipes through the words of Naz Deravian, author of Bottom of the Pot. You’ll fall in love with the picturesque portrait painted in the pages of this cookbook. Naz effortlessly introduces Persian flavors, while providing insight into her family’s voyage to America after fleeing Iran during the Iranian Revolution. Through her words, you’ll learn about the comfort her family found in adapting familiar meals for an American kitchen.

The Food of Indonesia

Learn to replicate the authentic flavors of Indonesian foods in the comfort of your home with some help from The Food of Indonesia. The diverse cultures of these fascinating islands include a range of exciting meals you’ll love sinking your teeth into. 

Original Flava: Caribbean Recipes from Home

You’ll fall in love with the lively flavors of Jamaican food through the exciting stories of brothers Shaun and Craig McAnuff. The gorgeous and colorful images in Original Flava will have you drooling to try Caribbean flavors you’ve never tasted before. Work your way through these authentic Jamaican recipes and share the joy of delicious food with your loved ones.

The Fire of Peru: Recipes and Stories from My Peruvian Kitchen

The Fire of Peru captures the vibrant essence of Peruvian food and includes delightful traditional dishes, like ceviche and lomo saltado (a classic Peruvian beef stir-fry). Each of the 100 recipes—including cocktails, appetizers, and specialty entrees—was created by Ricardo Zarate, a Los Angeles chef. And they all deliver the piquant, tangy flavors of South America. 

Tagines and Couscous: Delicious Recipes for Moroccan One-Pot Cooking

You’ll relish the fragrant medley of spices featured in some of the most appetizing Moroccan recipes in Tagines and Couscous. This collection of authentic, one-pot meals includes lamb tagine with dates, and chicken tagine with olives and preserved lemon. Each of these Morrocan-style favorites should, of course, be made in the traditional cookware with the warm aromatic flavors of saffron, turmeric, cinnamon, and more.

Indian Instant Pot Cookbook

Jump all over this modern take on Indian cuisine, fit for your favorite kitchen appliance: the Instant Pot. From tikka masala to butter chicken, you’ll love Indian flavors made easy in this one-of-a-kind cookbook. There are tips and tricks specifically for using the Instant Pot with 50 authentic recipes featuring the spicy Indian flavors you love most.

Maangchi's Real Korean Cooking

Learn all about the authentic and tasty dishes from the world’s leading authority in Korean cooking, Maangchi. She takes you through beginner’s dishes, like vegetable soup or scallion pancakes, to famous staples, like kimchi and quick pickles. Each meal in Maangchi’s Real Korean Cooking is specially designed for home cooks. There are also over 800 colorful tutorial images.  You’ll love learning about the famous side dishes and mainstays found on Korean dining tables, all of which will likely find their way to yours.

Mastering the Art of French Cooking

If you’ve never heard of Julia Child, this classic cookbook is a sure way to familiarize yourself with both her famous work and the art of French cuisine. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a beginner, this timeless guide features deep-rooted recipes with techniques that form the backbone of French cooking. Expand your culinary expertise with techniques adapted for the American kitchen. You’ll learn to make French masterpieces, like bouillabaisse and coq au vin.

Julie Taboulie's Lebanese Kitchen

For a little more variety on Middle Eastern cuisine, be sure to read the colorful pages of Julie Taboulie’s Lebanese Kitchen. This book takes you through Mediterranean recipes filled with fresh and seasonal ingredients anyone can appreciate. Pescatarian, vegan, vegetarian—you name it—this cookbook has recipes for every diet. It offers a fantastic opportunity to try your hand at classics like falafel and tabouilie, following Julie’s hands-on approach.

Outlander Kitchen: The Official Outlander Companion Cookbook

Celebrate the flavors of the Scottish Highlands along with memorable references to your favorite Scottish series, Outlander. This well-designed read includes gorgeous imagery and easy-to-follow recipes based on meals the characters eat on the show. Each recipe is based on one from the 18th century, but updated for modern cooks.

Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors from My Isaraeli Kitchen

Develop an admiration for Middle Eastern flavors with this one-of-a-kind, fresh take on Israeli cuisine. Taking inspiration from the street food and local markets in Israel, author Adeena Sussman emphasizes the spicy and bright flavors in each of her well-crafted recipes. From tahini to roasted grape salad, you’ll savor each delectable bite. Discover rich, cultural foods via these thoroughly tested recipes.

Japanese Soul Cooking: Ramen, Tonkatsu, Tempura, and More

Explore the fascinating flavors of Japan via the foods you already love, like ramen and tempura, in your very own kitchen. The exciting recipes included in this cookbook come from the streets and kitchens of Tokyo and beyond. The step-by-step photos and instructions are easy to follow, and give you a foolproof cultural cooking experience you’ll love. What are you waiting for?

Emilee Unterkoefler Emilee Unterkoefler
Emilee Unterkoefler is a freelance food writer, hiking enthusiast, and mama with over ten years of experience working in the food industry. Read Full Bio »

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