Skip to Main Content
CCSF Library logo Library Locations | Ask a Librarian | CCSF Home

Culinary Arts

Featured Culinary Arts Reference Books

Encyclopedia of American Food and Drink

Expanded edition includes more than a decade of culinary evolution and innovation- from the rise of the Food Network to the local food craze; from the DIY movement, to the food truck culture that proliferates in cities across the country. 

Law and Food

This book examines some of the most heavily debated issues in the interaction between food, in all forms, and the law. Topics covered include food security, food safety, food quality, intellectual property, and consumer protection. As well as highlighting current issues, the work also points to new challenges in this field.

Cooking Through History: a Worldwide Encyclopedia of Food with Menus and Recipes [2 Volumes]

This book surveys the history of cooking from the ancient world through the modern era. Sections on particular civilizations follow, with each section offering a historical overview, recipes, menus, primary source documents, and suggestions for further reading.

Dining Out

From restaurant architecture to technological developments, staffing and organization, tipping and waiting table, ethnic cuisines, and slow and fast foods, this delectably illustrated and profoundly informed and entertaining history takes us from the world's first restaurants in Kaifeng, China, to the latest high-end dining experiences.

Food Cultures of the United States: Recipes, Customs, and Issues

Examines all aspects of food culture in the United States, from the early Colonial period and Native American influences on the new immigrants' food to the modern era. 

Culinary Nationalism in Asia

With culinary nationalism defined as a process in flux, as opposed to the limited concept of national cuisine, the contributors of this book call for explicit critical comparisons of cases of culinary nationalism among Asian regions, with the intention of recognizing patterns of modern culinary development.

The Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

More than just a compendium of pastries, candies, ices, preserves, and confections, this reference work reveals how the human proclivity for sweet has brought richness to our language, our art, and, of course, our gastronomy.

The Business of Food

Takes readers behind the scenes of the food and drink industries, from food companies and brands to the environment, health, science and technology, culture, finance, and more.

The Gale Encyclopedia of Nutrition and Food Labels

Covers key nutrition and food label topics and terms as well as diseases and global food/nutrition issues.

Encyclopedia of Agriculture and Food Systems

Serves as the foundation for discussion of the food and environment challenges of the world, addressing issues from a global perspective and providing the background, references, and linkages for further exploration.

Background Sources


  • Background sources (also known as reference sources) are tertiary and contain information we "refer" to, such as dictionaries and encyclopedias. These are good sources to use to get started - when you need ideas for how to narrow your topic, or could use more words to describe your needs (such as when thinking of keywords to put into a search box.)

What do they contain?

  • Entries

How often are these sources published?

  • Once, annually, or every few years

Found in:

Alternative places to look:

Library & Learning Resources, City College of San Francisco
50 Frida Kahlo Way, San Francisco, CA 94112 | 415-452-5541

Staff Intranet