Cookbook author Mollie Katzen lists Berkeley home for $2M

It seems fitting that Mollie Katzen, the author and illustrator of “The Moosewood Cookbook” and “The Enchanted Broccoli Forest,” lives in a similarly enchanting home, surrounded by lush gardens and the forested Berkeley Hills. Now, 609 Canon Drive could be your enchanting home, for the price of $1.95 million.

Katzen’s love and talent for food, gardens and art have propelled her cookbooks to historic fame. Katzen is one of the best-selling cookbook authors of all time, with more than 6 million books in print. Her books, writings and drawings have received numerous honors, including being inducted into the James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame and housed in the Archives Center of the National Museum of American History.

View decks for bird watching adorn the main home.

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Katzen has a deep connection to 609 Canon Drive. “This is the house I’ve lived in and loved for most of my adult life,” Katzen said.

In the main home are two in-suite bedrooms.  This one features a stunning view from its private balcony.

In the main home are two in-suite bedrooms. This one features a stunning view from its private balcony.

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This home was built in 1948 and offers 3,292 square feet of living space, backing onto the endless trails of Tilden Park. Because the property consists of the main home, a guest suite and a writer’s cottage, all nestled on a sylvan, 25,515-square-foot lot in woodsy Kensington, it would be fair to call it a private sanctuary as well as a mini-estate .

On top of the main house, this lovely space served as an art studio for Katzen and could now be a lounge, an office, or again a studio.

On top of the main house, this lovely space served as an art studio for Katzen and could now be a lounge, an office, or again a studio.

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That writer’s cottage has been a workspace for Katzen, as has the 400-square-foot artist studio that crowns the main home’s second floor. “From the big studio upstairs, where I created my paintings and illustrations, you’ll be able to see a nightly glow of sunset, and a spectacular, unobstructed view of each month’s full moon. In the daytime, the enormous windows show you a sweeping view of the canyon in the park,” Katzen said.

In this kitchen with its treeline view, Katzen created and tested recipes.

In this kitchen with its treeline view, Katzen created and tested recipes.

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A charming breakfast nook overlooks and opens to the property.

A charming breakfast nook overlooks and opens to the property.

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These spaces, with their abundant natural light and forest views, lent inspiration to Katzen: The official listing page tells us that 12 best-selling cookbooks were written and illustrated here, and that recipes were tested in this incredible kitchen. The herb and veggie gardens no doubt figured into the development of these recipes, as did the huge farm table under the apple tree offering a postcard- perfect place for sampling the alfresco cuisine.

The outdoor space with its copious gardens and farm table is a celebration for a home chef.

The outdoor space with its copious gardens and farm table is a celebration for a home chef.

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With veggies, fruit, herbs, and flowers, the lush property is over half an acre.

With veggies, fruit, herbs, and flowers, the lush property is over half an acre.

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Anna Marie Erwert writes from both the renter and new buyer perspective, having (finally) achieved both statuses. She focuses on national real estate trends, specializing in the San Francisco Bay Area and Pacific Northwest. Follow Anna on Twitter: @AnnaMarieErwert.


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