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Cook the Book: 'L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook'

20090622farmersmarketcookbook.jpgIf you've ever been to L.A. chances are that you've been to Farmers Market. Located at Third and Fairfax, right next door to CBS's Television City, Farmers Market is an L.A. institution celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. The market was started back in 1934 by oil baron E.B. Gilmore. Back then most of the land in southern California was used for agricultural purposes and the idea was to create a place where farmers and artisans could come together and sell their wares. The market was an immediate success and rapidly expanded to include not only local produce, but exotic food items from around the world. In 1941, the market was revamped, and it went from a series of outdoor stalls to a shopping plaza, complete with a bell tower.

Several restaurants quickly sprang up in the in the market. (Someone had to feed all of those hungry farmers, after all.) Today there are more than 30 restaurants operating in Farmers Market, serving everything from fondue to falafel. The market is home to nearly every type of cuisine imaginable: Korean, Mexican, Greek, Japanese, Singaporean, French, Lebanese, and good old American are all represented, along with many more.

L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook is a collection of recipes from the restaurants and vendors of Farmers Market assembled by JoAnn Cianciulli. Each recipe in the book is prefaced by the story of the vendor who contributed it, some who have been there since the opening and some who have come later on in the market's history.

Every day this week we are going to be sharing a recipe from L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook with you. Here's peek of what we have on the menu for this week: Chilaquiles Verdes, Spanakopita, Potato Piroshki, and Hungarian Cinnamon Loaf.Caroline Russock

Win 'L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook'

Thanks to the good folks at Chronicle Books, we are giving away five (5) copies of L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook this week. All you have to do is tell us about your favorite farmer's market vendor in the comments section below.

Five (5) people will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. We're sorry, but entry is only open to residents of the U.S. and Canada. Comments will close Monday, June 29 at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.

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