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The Amish Cook at Home: Simple Pleasures of Food, Family, and Faith Hardcover – October 21, 2008

4.4 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Part cookbook and part cultural exploration, the book is beautifully written in anecdotal stories that illuminate the Amish respect for the natural world around them. --inmamaskitchen.com

Much more than a hands-on tutorial...also offers an inside look at Amish culture and daily life. --Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

About the Author

 Together with editor Kevin Williams, Elizabeth Coblentz founded "The Amish Cook" newspaper column and later coauthored the column's namesake inaugural cookbook. Today, Lovina Eicher, Elizabeth's daughter, pens the column that continues to share Amish culture, tradition, and recipes with a nationally syndicated audience of more than 130 newspapers throughout the United States. Lovina lives in Michigan with her husband, Joe, and their eight children. Kevin lives in Ohio.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing (October 21, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0740773720
  • ISBN-13: 978-0740773723
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 0.9 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #839,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The Amish Cook at Home is a wonderful book. I learned more about the Amish culture from this book than in my whole life previously. I appreciated Lovina sharing her family with me and Kevin's comments and insights as an editor, friend, and outside observer.

The recipes are straightforward. I liked Lovina's comments at the beginning of each recipe, whether a hint about what she does, or a comment about when the recipe is used. Inexperienced and experienced cooks can both use and learn from the recipes.

The book takes you through a year at the Eichers, with food to define the seasons, activities, and holidays. Dandelion greens in the spring, zucchini in the summer, Sourdough starter and bread in the fall, meat dishes in the winter. All with contributions from the children, Lovina, and her husband Joe. I especially loved reading what the children wrote.

Best of all are Lovina's Sourdough Starter, Sourdough Bread, and Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls recipes. The book is worth acquiring and reading for many reasons, but most of all for these three recipes. The cinnamon rolls are light and flavorful and the bread is marvelously light and delicate. We just took some out of the oven and ate it warm with butter - heavenly.

This is a good addition to any cook's kitchen and to anybody interested in the Amish way of life.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book hoping for a wealth of traditional Amish recipes. The reviews were strong so, I was hoping to be hppy with my purchase. Unfortunately, what this book is is a very intriguing personal history of one Amish family, and a summary of the more broadly experienced Amish faith and culture. As a student of social History, I thought the book was well written and very engaging. As a cookbook, it is severely lacking. The recipes are actually a very small part of the book. And, most rely on canned mushroom soup and Velveeta as main components. (Velveeta? Bleck!) Many actually call for margarine, which we all know, liquifies your liver. The recipes are exactly what one would find in a 1950's Campbell's soup cookbook. How is it even possible to publish an Amish cookbook without a recipe for apple pie? If you are an experienced cook/baker, this is not what you need on your cookbook shelf. Save the space for an actual cookbook. If you are looking for an Amish personal history, go ahead and buy this book. It Is a very good read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
While the photographs are truly a feast for the eyes,sadly the recipes are not a feast for the tongue or tummy. The Amish have a reputation as superb cooks and bakers and I was looking forward to trying some truly delicious,wholesome recipes. Imagine my surprise when I found the recipes filled with ingredients such as Velveeta,hot dogs and Miracle Whip!!!!Many of the recipes are just not appetizing, ie chicken slopped with condensed soup and cheese. However as I don't think it is fair to review a cookbook without trying at least a few of the recipes, I made two,the strawberry pie and the rhubarb dessert. The pie was the bigger disappointment. The filling was gummy and did nothing to enhance the flavor of the berries. The crust which contained cooking oil and milk was not flaky. The rhubarb concoction is pretty much a meringue topped bar. It was passable but not something I would add to my repertoire of recipes.

Visually, the photographs are stunning. Most are of pastoral scenes, animals and produce. Very few are of the recipes. The text is wildly uneven, with inane remembrances and almost embarrassing essays by the author's kids. However there are some interesting tidbits about the Amish religion and practices and some lovely prayers. I could have done without the description of the chicken butchering where the children partake by pulling out the innards.

If you chose to get this book savor the photos,skim the text and skip the recipes.
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Format: Hardcover
This cook book--as a compilation of recipes--is a major loser. I was hoping to find some unique and vintage, handed-down-through-the-generations recipes. I have surely been disappointed. (There is one recipe for dandelion flower jelly that I will try in the Spring.) The sour dough recipe is not distinctive, neither are the pie recipes, (neither are most all of the recipes!) and I was dismayed when I found recipes using canned soup and a well-known processed cheese spread--don't get me wrong, both have their uses, but to find these ingredients in an Amish cook book really startled and upset me! I thought the Amish were "of and from the soil", kind of a connection to their faith. Canned soup doesn't get ME there.

Reading recipes using canned soup and processed cheese, then leafing through a few more pages and finding a picture of a pantry loaded with jars of home-grown and home-canned produce, made me wonder WHAT WAS THIS AUTHOR AND HER EDITOR THINKING?!? Where are the beautiful, old recipes for all that home-canning?

I did come to attention when I read about the butchering of the chickens, which is done twice a year--once for young broilers (for meat) and once for older hens for broth). But there are no recipes for the broth! And the rest of the chicken recipes are pathetic!

While reading through the book, searching for inspiration, I felt I was reading the words of eighth graders. Seriously. I don't mean to offend anyone and I'm sorry if I have, because I believe this book was written in good faith. But it really doesn't cut it as a cook book. And I hope there are better books out there explaining the Amish culture.

I should have known better, just looking at the book's cover--a berry pie with a FAKE lattice top crust....
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