Relic Tray: Saucepans & the Single Girl

Swinging ’60s chicks with recipes!

​In 1962, Helen Gurley Brown made publishing history with Sex & the Single Girl — an advice book that encouraged single women to be independent, make their own money and experience pre-marital sex. It sold two million copies in three weeks. Three years later, a copycat cookbook hit the bookstands. This book, Saucepans & the Single Girl, was written by two married women, Jinx Kragan and Judy Perry. But they explained that they had been single, you see, before snagging those mates. And one of the ways they lured those men into marital bliss was with their skills in the kitchen, not the bedroom! The flyleaf explains it all:

“Guaranteed to do more for the bachelor girl’s social life than long-lash mascara or a new discotheque dress, Saucepans & the Single Girl tells how to handle the menu and the man when a Lover with a Leica comes to dinner or A Man with a Million drops in for an evening … Here is the ideal kitchen guide for the gal who wants to make the leap from the filing cabinet to the flambe.”

The filing cabinet? Well, remember, back in the early 1960s, most bachelor girls with careers were schoolteachers, nurses or secretaries (like Helen Gurley Brown before striking it rich with her first book). It took some clever scheming to go from making coffee for the office staff — one of the complaints about having a “career” in this book — to finding Mr. Right. And a man’s heart is through his tummy, right? 

Categories: Dining, Food & Drink