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What are your favorites? The New Natural Foods Encyclopedia, by Rebecca Wood, is one of mine. A new edition recently was published. The Oxford Companion to Food by Alan Davidson et. al. is another. The Food of the Western World, by Theodora Fitzgibbon is no. 3. Rounding out my top 4 favorites is the Wellness Encyclopedia of Food and Nutrition, by Sheldon Margen, MD, of the UC at Berkeley, CA.
I treasure my 17 books of the Time-Life series "The Good Cook". There are 28 volumes in the series edited by Richard Olney. (He was originally from Iowa, so I am proud of a native son). Another, maybe more practical series I own is Womans Day "Encyclopedia of Cooking".--Twelve volumes including an index. One can always find a solution to a cooking dilemma. Anyone finding these old books at an auction or booksale should grab them!