Top Chef contestant and The Chew’s host Carla Hall pulls from her shelf her 3 indispensable cookbooks. In April, Atria will publish Carla's Comfort Foods: Favorite Dishes from Around the World.

Cookwise: The Secrets of Cooking Revealed by Shirley O. Corriher

When I first started cooking, I was very much an intuitive cook when it came to taste, but that didn't mean I didn't want to know why some things worked and why others did not. My interest took me to culinary school. Shirley has the ability to make scientific explanations approachable for the home cook as well as the professional. She teaches techniques while sharing delicious recipes. The result is consistently delicious.

It's All American Food by David Rosengarten

David shows us that much of the American food that we know, and consider to be staples in our casual American restaurants, are variations of dishes indigenous to other countries. I love how he shares stories of how and why dishes changed based on what was available in America as various people immigrated here. It's a great reminder, as well as a history lesson, why America is such a melting pot.

The Flavor Bible by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page

Very simply, it helps me be creative but original.