Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Campy cookbooks

One of the joys of being a used book buyer is a first look at the books that make it onto our shelves (and many that don't). As my co-workers (and my wife) will tell you, I have a weakness for cookbooks. Mostly I like cookbooks I can use, those with scrumptious recipes, clear instructions, or mouth-watering narratives. But some cookbooks are just plain cute.

Last week, we got in a half dozen books from the Better Homes and Gardens "Creative Cooking Library." The photgraphy, if not the recipes, date these books firmly in the wholesome early 1960s, right between the advent of "ingredients" like "sharp process American cheese" and the Alice Waters food revolution. If you want to cook from these books, perhaps you should first stock your larder with "cocktail franks," gelatin, and monosodium glutamate.

I think my favorite is the Birthdays and Family Celebrations volume--the Fountain Fix-ups, especially the Mint Malt, look tempting. The front and back covers are at left.

Each volume is just $5 if you're interested. Or just drop by to look at the pictures before some other nostalgic foodie gets hold of them.


Sparkleneely said...

Ooohhh, I'm interested in the Birthdays and Celebrations one!

each season, we have a "Mid-Century Supper Club Potluck," where we all get together and recreate the recipes in these old cookbooks -- it is so hysterical and so much fun. We even give out prizes for "Best Representation" and "Most disgusting" and Best Tasting Despite..." Highly recommended!

Bill Easton said...

My Mom had all these Better Homes & Gardens cookbooks...used to love looking at the pictures. Too funny...a definite flashback...especially the Birthdays & Celebrations!!