Joy of Cooking Launches Gadgets and Cookbook

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The 75th anniversary edition of The Joy of Cooking cookbook will be released on Monday. The new edition is "a sort of greatest hits of home cooking" according to The New York Times Magazine.

The magazine provided a preview of two recipes re-issued in the new Joy: tamale pie and a spice cake made with tomato soup. The cake's already caused quiet a stir about cooking with off beat ingredients (sauerkraut in a coconut cake, anyone?) on the rec.food newsgroup.

Along with the newest version of the cookbook, Joy of Cooking also launched a new line of red and white kitchen tools which were designed here in New York City by Prime Studio. The Joy of Cooking gadgets are available online at Target.com. Considering their price point of about $5 each, the spatula, spoons, and measuring cups I tried work well. They feel solid and are easy to clean. Do you like colorful kitchen tools like these, or do you generally stick to metal and basic black?

On Sunday, I tested the Joy tools while I made the tamale pie. It was the first time I'd cooked with a Joy recipe. The tamale was quick to throw together, a little bit casserole throw-back, a little bit fun. Next time, I'll dial up the spices and add some hot peppers. Anyone have old favorite recipes from past versions of Joy that we should look for in the new edition?

The arrival of this newest version of the Joy of Cooking book comes on the heels of encyclopedic cookbooks from Gourmet, Silver Spoon, and most recently Bon Appetit. Weighing in at about 1,000 pages a piece, how many of these big books do you own? What's the best way to pick and choose between them?