When im looking for a particuliar item I usually type what im looking for into the top right hand Ebay Search Box. Lets say that im looking for cooking recipes. I would type in "recipes cooking". This can vary the results given if you typed "cooking recipes". It is just up to trial and error.
Finding what you want after searching.
When the search results page appears you will 99% of the time see items that people have PAID FOR YOU TO SEE. Usually these items are more expensive than items further down the list, they are just hoping that you will grab the first thing you see. I usually just scroll down untill I see a faint grey line across the page, this is where the "normal" items are. Not paid for you to see, just Auctions and Buy it now items. I usually find bargains on page 2 or 3.
Fine tunning your search
If you still cant find what your looking for, either click advanced search (just under the search box at the top right of page), there are many options there.
Another search filter is on the left hand side of the search results page. On the left, you will see many drop down boxes. These contain things like, seach only for buy it now items, paypal only, etc...
This has helped me alot. Hope it does the same for you!