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Good Simple Cookery by Elisabeth Ayrton

A Guide to Collecting Rare Cookbooks

Forget Dickens, Twain and Steinbeck. Humble cookbooks are highly collectible. A window on bygone times long before microwaves and TV dinners, these historic books offer dishes, ingredients and styles of cooking that have been forgotten.

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Julia Child

Julia Child's Cookbooks

Julia Child (1912-2004) can be thanked for introducing French cuisine to America - the land of hot dogs and apple pie - during the 1960s. Aside from her most famous creation, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Child wrote more than a dozen cookbooks. Mastering the Art of French Cooking was first published in 1961 and her TV career began two years later.

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Manifold Destiny

Weird Cookbooks

From roadkill to bugs, car engines to Star Wars, take a peek at our Top Ten list of the world's weirdest cookbooks.

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Out-of-Print Cookbooks

Bestselling Out-of-Print Cookbooks

Even with so many varieties of cookbooks, the vast majority fall out-of-print within a few years of being published. Putting aside culinary juggernauts such as The Joy of Cooking and The Moosewood Cookbook, cookbooks have a very short shelf life in mainstream bookstores. However, the Internet and the world’s second-hand booksellers have ensured these out-of-print cookery books can be found and purchased in seconds.

See AbeBooks′ Top 10 Bestselling Out-of-Print Cookbooks

Hand-me-down Cookbooks

Hand-Me-Down Cookbooks

AbeBooks asked 500 customers who owned a cookbook that had been given to them by a family member to spill the beans about their beloved hand-me-down culinary companions.

Read The Top 10 Most Frequently Handed Down Cookbooks


Don't miss these other cooking features:

- Penguin's Great Food Series

- Natalie Maclean's Book and Wine Pairings

- The Most Expensive Cookbooks Ever Sold on AbeBooks

AbeBooks Review: Blood, Bones & Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton

Ask AbeBooks: Recommend Unusual Cookbooks


AbeBooks Review: In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan