Side Dish for March 1, 2012

Check out LSU sale for cookbook collecting

cHERAMIE sONNIER

One of my favorite weekends each year is when the Friends of the LSU Libraries hold its Book Bazaar. I make at least one, sometimes two trips, to the LSU campus to look through the used books arranged by categories on long tables and on book shelves. I even peruse the books still in boxes under the tables, that makes me think I might find that special book no one else has spotted.

Cookbook collectors in particular shouldn’t miss the Friends of the LSU Libraries Book Bazaar, which continues through Saturday. There will be plenty of bargains, from hard-to-find volumes to popular local cookbooks, priced from 50 cents to $20, organizers say.

Members of the Friends of the LSU Libraries have gathered more than 60,000 used books for this year’s sale, according to Madeline Mocan, publicity coordinator.

The annual sale is on the LSU campus in the 4-H Mini Farm and Nelson Memorial buildings, located just south of the John M. Parker Coliseum. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, and admission is free.

Cookbook fans should head to the Nelson Memorial building where they will find plenty to choose from — at least 2,400 cookbooks, including “an enormous collection of Louisiana cookbooks and lots of Southern” books, said Pat Hoth, the Friends’ cookbook expert.

“This is a good chance to ‘beef up’ your cookbook collection and perhaps expand your cooking repertoire,” Mocan said.

There will be cookbooks by authors Julia Child, Holly Clegg and Nippy Carville; a complete set of the late Chet Beckwith’s popular “Too Good to be True” series; plus copies of the Junior League of Baton Rouge’s “River Road Recipes” and even some of the booklets compiled by The Advocate’s Food staff for its “Food Focus” shows.

“There will be a copy of ‘The Junior League of Mexico City’ cookbook, which I will be hand carrying to the sale since it only came in last week,” Hoth said. “We also have two two-volume sets of ‘Eating Your Way Around the World: Knife, Fork and Spoon’ and ‘Drinking Your Way Around the World: Jigger, Beaker and Glass’ by Charles Baker Jr. One is the original 1946 set and the other is from 1951. The drawings are beautiful, what I think of as 1920s, 1930s illustrations.”

Anyone wanting information about donating books to The Friends of the LSU Libraries should call the Book Barn at (225) 578-5925 after this year’s sale ends.

Happy cookbook hunting.