Way back when I did love and utilize cookbooks, I'd frequently read them cover to cover and then internalize general principles. Except for cakes, I'd very rarely follow a recipe exactly. Besides eliminating or seriously reducing the amount of salt and other seasonings, it was usually impossible to find all of the ingredients in my pantry/kitchen. I became a "housewife" in late June,1970, and two months later we docked in Israel. Post-tzenna* Israel had plenty of food, but not all of the the ingredients in the American recipes.
My mother bought/sent me not only cookbooks, but lots of books about natural health, dieting, pregnancy and child-raising. I added many books and health/vegetarian magazines to the collection. But it has been a very long time, decades, since any of them have been opened and read. When I need a recipe, instead of taking down a few books, going through the index, putting small pieces of paper to mark the pages and then reading and comparing, I just check with Chef Google. Isn't that what almost everyone does?
So, as I've planned and envisioned my new kitchen, the bookshelves** will morph into my coffee corner. Gd willing in a few months, maybe by my next birthday, we'll be seeing my percolator, French Presses and coffee mugs on those shelves.
I've already given away more than half of the actual cookbooks. If anyone is interested in any of the remaining books, please come and get them.
*צנע tzenna or zenna, was the term for the austerity days of great financial difficulties and hardships in the early years of the State of Israel. The population grew dramatically, as Jews from all over the world hurried to our Historic Homeland. Basic food items were rationed, and families/citizens were given coupons to try to make it possible to share the limited supplies.
** That wall closet is to be re-doored with new formica to match the new cabinets on the other walls.