Five of the Most Expensive Cookbooks You'll Probably Never Own

Categories: Chow Bella

If you like cooking as much as we think we do, you probably have at least a few referential or inspirational cookbooks tucked away in your personal library. You might prop them up against a solid mixing bowl and flip through their pages with buttery, sticky, garlic-y fingers and reckless disregard.

While we're certainly fans of the classics like Joy of Cooking and Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book, sometimes the same-ol'-same just doesn't cut it. So if you've got money to blow and a serious craving for gastronomic literature, check out these titles for a literary-culinary adventure like you've never seen before.

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5. L'art de Guy Martin

This 636-page, food porn bible contains recipes from manager and chef de cuisine of Le Grand Véfour, Guy Martin. With just 63 recipes and more than 350 photos, the book lends itself to the coffee table more than the kitchen shelf, but does include recipes Martin wrote specifically for the book and those inspired by his Savoyard roots. Damask tablecloths from Le Grand Véfour, one of the oldest restaurants in Paris, serve as the book's cover; as a nod to the distinctly Japanese influence of the book's publisher, graphic designer, and photographer, Yoshihiro Saito, you'll also get one pair of silver Christofle chopsticks.

This book is clearly meant to be treated as a piece of art - and with a price tag around $500 we won't think you're crazy if you frame it and hang it on a wall.

Check out a video interview with Olivier Desobeaux of publisher SuperEdition here.

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4. First editions of A Guide To Modern Cookery or Joy of Cooking

Any book collector can tell you about what it means to own a first edition. Be it Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird or Escoffier's The Complete Guide to the Art of Modern Cookery, "firsts" mean one thing for sure: cha-ching.

A first edition of Irma Rombauer and Marion Rombauer Becker's Joy of Cooking, printed in 1931, will run you about $500. Although there have been scores of reprints in the decades since, getting your hands on one of the few thousand original prints is a challenge for only the most worthy book and food aficionado. And if you think that price is steep, don't even think about going for the first edition inscribed by Escoffier. Originally printed in 1907, it's available for purchase here for just under $1,000, including shipping.

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