The Used Cookbook Sale at The Hollywood Farmer’s Market

On Sunday, my friend Ben Mandelker of The B-Side Blog invited me to the used cookbook sale at the Hollywood Farmer’s Market. As many of you know, I’m kind of a cookbook junkie (see here) so this was a no-brainer. When I got there, I found mostly generic cookbooks (many, many diet books) and old copies of Bon Appetit anthologies. But then Ben started to dig up some treasures, which I’ll share with you here….

First up, The Clintons at the Arkansas governor’s mansion cookbook:


I’m so mad I didn’t buy this. The sale was ridiculous–$1 for each hardcover–so even if this was just a novelty, it’s such a weird collector’s item, I feel like I missed an opportunity. I probably also missed an opportunity not buying this:


Maybe if I were more of a Northern Exposure fan. I mean: I’ve seen the show and really enjoy it, but do I really need to commemorate that fact? Probably not.

This may have been in my house growing up, my mom was such a Kathie Lee fan:


In fact, my mom once waited in a huge line at a mall on Long Island to get Kathie Lee to sign a copy of her memoir. So if we had any cookbooks in our house, this was probably one of them. (Though I’m pretty sure there weren’t any cookbooks in our house except diet books.)

Now one of you kind readers once told me that if I were to ever see the Miss Piggy Cookbook, I should buy it. You weren’t kidding.


This book is hilarious. First of all, any cookbook that has a recipe collaboration between Miss Piggy and Maya Angelou is a cookbook I want to have in my collection. There’s so much good campy stuff in here (Ivana Trump, anyone?) that I think this needs to be featured on a web show I’m thinking of starting called Cookbook Show & Tell. Stay tuned for that.

Ben got a big kick out of this:


I got a big kick out of this recipe inside:



As for what I bought, in addition to the Miss Piggy book, I purchased two Time Life books to add to my collection (one about the foods of Italy, one about the foods of Provincial France), then I bought this because I’ve heard so much about him but never saw his show:


And I bought this because it’s such a fascinating relic of a time period when veal cookbooks were possible (you’d never see a single-subject veal cookbook today):


Also, I loved the fact that there was this hand-written note inside:


Clearly, this person was planning a menu: scallopini, risotto alla Milanese. (Can’t really read the rest). Fun, though, to find that in there.

And that was it for the used cookbook sale, but I’d say I did pretty well. Now I just have to make room for these new additions on my shelf. Step aside Ottolenghi, Miss Piggy needs her space.

14 thoughts on “The Used Cookbook Sale at The Hollywood Farmer’s Market”

  1. LOL…I have been collecting cookbooks since I was 12…now hitting 67!…so you can well imagine the numbs (about 800) that I have collected thru the years. YES, they are on my list to cull….but then so many of them are 1st Editions and Autographed….Julia Child, James Beard…etc. They are such an addiction!

  2. I was really hoping you picked up the Northern Exposure book – I loved that show and would imagine the comfort food recipes run from East coast to Alaskan…

    Looking forward to your posts about the rest of the books recipes!

  3. Jennifer Friedmann

    I love this entire thing, based solely on the fact you pulled off using “Ottolenghi, and Miss Piggy” , in the same sentence

  4. Adri Barr Crocetti

    Oh my! I had no idea about this. I am a cookbook junkie also, and sales like this are a dream come true for me. I particularly enjoy the marginalia. I am right here in the San Fernando Valley, and yet I have never visited the Hollywood Farmer’s Market. There’s something quite wrong with the situation, I’d say. Also until today I had never visited your site – also something wrong. It looks as though I have missed a great deal all the way around. Thank you for the wonderful information!

  5. The galloping gourmet, I remember him when I was in grade school, he was the dapper guy, all the housewives of the 70’s were in love with him, Graham Kerr,

  6. Since you seem to be in L.A., wanted to mention that I’ve got a bunch of vintage cookbooks at my store in Santa Monica…call me if interested @ 310.452.3400…
    Debora @ Memento…plus, I’d love to meet you!

  7. The writing seems relatively clear to me, maybe it’s similar to my own —

    Sauternes (**illegible**) **illegible** / lima bean Same as before with **illegible**
    Tomato and Zucchini salad

    Bed of Spinach

    Braised Honeydew Slices
    on top of Scallopine

    Marsala cream sauce

    Risotto alla Milanese
    Check on
    a good ‘6(assume there’s another number here to denote year)
    (new rack
    Some dessert

    (And the sidebar on the left):

    LR wants rice/tuna
    Check on the macro scene (??) for
    next week and
    let them know
    Throw over
    the sauce

  8. Ahhh, The Graham Kerr Cookbook!! He was the guy who got me interested in cooking. Julia was amusing, but Graham came on stage jumping over the sofa and sloshing a glass of wine! Something that said to me, “Hey! Guys can cook and still be guys!” He is still very active in the nearby community of Mount Vernon, WA.

  9. I swear I had that Miss Piggy Cookbook at one time and now I have no idea where it is. I am a cookbook fanatic, myself, AND a a HUGE Muppets fan, so I am really upset that I can’t find it. May have to take a walk on ebay….

  10. My mom worked 1 day with Graham Kerr in the 70’s – my dad sold microwave ovens when they 1st came out, and Kerr came to MA to do a cooking demo with one off the brands, my Mom was his ‘assistant’…he was sweet, a BIG flirt, and drank – a lot! A fun memory….try to find his old shows, a hoot to watch.
    I own a mess of cookbooks, serious to cook from, some inherited from relatives, and some just fun to have – one funny one is “How to cook to please a man” LOL

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