Exploring Cookbooks: 1968 Time Life Foods of the World – American Cooking

This has been called the cookbook series that any cookbook collector MUST own, or they aren’t a real cookbook collector! The reason these are so highly sought after is the amazing depth and range of recipes in them, extremely remarkable and noteworthy for 1968. They were discontinued in part due to complaints that ingredients were hard to acquire for the home cook. Not so anymore. And these recipes are just fantastic! I cook out of them all.the.time.

First published in 1968 by Time Life there are 27 of these books in the series…I only own 6. I eagerly seek them out whenever I can find them at thrift stores, garage sales and the like. I don’t do Ebay anymore for personal reasons so I have little recourse. But I will continue to find them I’m sure. I have heard that they are both easy to find as well as difficult. For me personally they have been difficult to track down for some reason.

So sadly for me I only own the wire bound copies that feature just the recipes – also called the kitchen copies as they are just the recipes to be used in the kitchen instead of the beautiful photographic hardbound editions. I do not own any of the hardbound editions at this time. I’ve been meaning to complete this particular collection but have never gotten around to it for whatever reason.

More after the cut including the complete list of books and full photos of the American Cooking edition.

The entire list of titles in the series (and authors) for those who would like to know:

African Cooking by Laurens van der Post
American Cooking by Dale Brown
American Cooking : Creole and Acadian by Peter S. Feibleman
American Cooking : The Eastern Heartland by Jose Wilson
American Cooking : The Great West by Jonathan Leonard Norton
American Cooking : The Melting Pot by James Shenton, Angelo Pellegrini, Dale Brown, Israel Shenker, Peter Wood
American Cooking : New England by Jonathan Norton Leonard
American Cooking : The Northwest by Dale Brown
American Cooking : Southern Style by Eugene Walter
Cooking of the British Isles by Adrian Bailey
Cooking of the Caribbean Islands by Linda Wolfe
Chinese Cooking by Emily Hahn
Classic French Cooking by Craig Claiborne, Pierre Franey
Cooking of Provincial France by M.F.K. Fisher
Cooking of Germany by Nika Standen Hazelton
Cooking of India by Santha Rama Rau
Cooking of Italy by Waverly Root
Cooking of Japan by Rafael Steinberg
Latin American Cooking by Jonathan Norton Leonard
Middle Eastern Cooking by Harry G. Nickles
Pacific and Southeast Asian Cooking by Rafael Steinberg
Quintet of Cuisines by Michael and Frances Field
Russian Cooking by Helen and George Papashvly
Cooking of Scandinavia by Dale Brown
Cooking of Spain and Portugal Peter S. Feibleman
Cooking of Vienna’s Empire by Joseph Wechsberg
Wines and Spirits by Alec Waugh

At any rate I decided to highlight the very classic American Cooking first. It just seemed right to me for some reason. Next week I’ll feature another one on the list until I have all of the ones I currently own posted.

Each image links to a larger picture if you want to read or use the recipes.


Each spiral bound book measures 9 inches by 6 inches and is about 1/4 inch thick.


Cucumber Bisque on the left and Pumpkin Soup on the right. The Pumpkin Soup is fabulous!


Buttermilk Fried Onions and Corn Oysters on the left and Boston Baked Beans on the right.


Hashed Brown Potatoes on the left and Mashed Potatoes on the right.


Potato Salad on the left and Tomato Aspic on the right – GROSS!!


Baked Apples and Cranberry-Orange Relish (Cranberry Sauce – and a VERY good recipe for it too!) on the left. Old-fashioned Apple Butter and Grandmother Brown’s Rhubarb Marmalade on the right.


Stuffed Pork Chops and Baked Bourbon-glazed Ham.


Red Flannel Hash and Chili con Carne – except it has beans in it.


Duck in Orange Aspic with Orange and Onion Salad – this recipe looks revolting, which is the only reason I included it!


Jambalaya and Barbecued Shrimp. These both sound heavenly and l think I need to test them soon, especially the shrimp.


Lobster Newburg (what American cookbook is complete without this?!) and Scalloped Clams on the left. Pacific Oyster Stew on the right – and this recipe is beautiful, simple, easy and SO SO good!!


Chiles Rellenos – a recipe I can NOT believe is included in a cookbook from 1968! On the right is a breakfast cake recipe for Snipdoodle or what I have always called a Snickerdoodle cake. Its also a very good recipe and worth trying.


The quintessential Apple Pie and Pumpkin Pie recipes…and these are good ones!


Butterscotch Brownies and Chocolate Brownies. On the right the first page of the index.



Filed under Exploring Cookbooks

2 responses to “Exploring Cookbooks: 1968 Time Life Foods of the World – American Cooking

  1. Tchoukie

    I can’t believe I ever gave those books away due to my hasty departure from Seattle in 1977! I only kept the spiral notebooks and the one on American Cooking I misplaced about 6 years ago and still can’t find it. Thanks for going into all the trouble to reprint.

  2. Tchoukie

    And another thing. Both the Jumbalaya and the BBQ shrimp? Not just sheer heaven, pure bliss to boot

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