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OP: The Vegetarian Epicure (signed paperback)

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by Anna Thomas

Vintage Books, 1972. Paperback. Fine. Signed. 

Vegetarian cookbooks, both self-published and issued by large houses, boomed in the 1970s, slowly creeping their way into the mainstream. Vegetarianism was then still deeply rooted in the counterculture, and its proponents were passionate and political, both in life and in diet. The cookbooks, even those picked up by major publishers, had the DIY soul of these nonconformist communities. After Frances Moore Lappe’s Diet for a Small Planet (1971), Anna Thomas’s The Vegetarian Epicure (1972) led the pack.

As a film school undergrad in California at the time, Anna Thomas (1948– ) may not have seemed the most likely candidate for prestigious publishing house Knopf. Editor Judith Jones, however, knew the cultural attitude toward vegetarianism was turning favorably, and Thomas’s enthusiasm for the bounties, not the deprivations, of the plant world made her the perfect ambassador.

With dishes like steamed Jerusalem artichokes in a mayonnaise dressing, asparagus souffle with dill sauce, cheese enchiladas, chestnut soup, and kolokithya (squash-stuffed) dolmades, it is no wonder that The Vegetarian Epicure remains in print with a loyal following, many of them second or third generation converts to the book.

Ours is a Fine, signed copy of the Vintage Press paperback edition. 

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