A publishing throwdown is set to unfold during the holiday months as e-books go up against old-fashioned hard copies during one of the busiest cookbook-selling seasons of the year.
According to Gourmand-Magazine, more than one-third of yearly cookbook sales takes place in November and December in time for the holiday gift-giving season. With the rising popularity of e-books like Amazons Kindle and tablets like the iPad, pundits, publishers and foodie readers alike have all but declared the print form dead, proclaiming that the future of cookbooks belongs to the digital format.
In recent months, for instance, publishers released an e-book version of Julia Childs Mastering the Art of French Cooking, a 752-page tome. Chef Grant Achatz chose to publish his Paris 1906 menu -- comprised of recipes from his pop-up concept restaurant Next -- as an e-book for the iPad which was released this week.
And chef David Changs quarterly food magazine Lucky Peach is also available on iPad.
According to the latest numbers from Publishers Weekly, overall e-book sales rose 117 percent in August to $88.8 million, compared to August 2010.
With the ability to show video tutorials and cooking demos, digital cookbooks also offer more multi-media possibilities, a feature entrepreneurs have been pushing forward with the development of accessories like the Chef Sleeve to protect tablets from messy kitchen splatters.