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The Amish Cook: Recollections and Recipes from an Old Order Amish Family Hardcover – November 13, 2002

4.7 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Eleven years ago, while still a college student, Williams, who had become intrigued by the Amish as "a living link between a simpler time" and the hectic world of today, asked Coblentz to write a newspaper column he had envisioned about life in an Amish community. Today, her syndicated monthly column appears nationwide in more than 100 newspapers. This book is not just a compilation of the columns and recipes, however; Williams begins with his and Coblentz's story, than follows with a chapter on the history of the Amish. He has organized the recipes by meal, from breakfast to supper, with separate sections on dessert and on Sundays and special occasions. Each chapter contains history and background from Williams, comments and reminiscences from Coblentz, and some of her original columns, as well as additional recipes. Williams's instincts were true-Coblentz's description of her life offers a fascinating glimpse into another era (her columns might almost have been written by a contemporary of Laura Ingalls Wilder). Recommended for both social science and cookery collections. [Sadly, Coblentz died September 17, 2002.-Ed.]
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From the Publisher

•"The Amish Cook" column is syndicated in more than 100 newspapers nationwide.

•Elizabeth wrote THE AMISH COOK in longhand by the light of a kerosene lamp.

•Elizabeth has been a writer for the Amish newspaper, The Budget,for 40 years.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (November 13, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580082149
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580082143
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 0.8 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #75,567 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on February 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Having been born and raised on the fringes of the Pennsylvania Dutch heartland in Lancaster County, and having grandparents who were close enough to the Pennsylvania Dutch lifestyle as to consider myself half `Dutch', this book deals with a subject very, very close to home for me.
The most important thing for a prospective reader to know about this book is that it is as much, if not more so a book of Recollections than it is a book of Recipes. In fact, one will get much more from this book if they approach it as they would Jacques Pepin's book `The Apprentice' rather than as they would a book of Pennsylvania Dutch recipes by Betty Groff or Mary Showalter.
The book most similar to this that I have read recently is Sallie Ann Robinson's `Gullah Home Cooking the Daufuskie Way'. Both books describe a subsistence farming way of life, with recipes that reflect that fact. In reviewing Robinson's book, I thought it was unlikely I would ever actually make any of the recipes in the book. The very same thing is true of the recipes by Elizabeth Coblentz. That is not because I don't like Pennsylvania Dutch cooking. I like it as well or better than Southern cooking or Spanish cooking or Irish cooking. Coblentz' recipes are pictures of how an Old Order Amish family lives. As such, they contain a lot of surprises for us `English'. On the one hand, when a recipe calls for mayonnaise, it specifies homemade mayonnaise. No surprise there. But, on the next page is a recipe that calls for a can of condensed cream of mushroom soup and American cheese.
Equally surprising is the use of margarine. Not surprising is the large amounts of white bread, bacon, potatoes, lard, processed cheeses, butter, and sugar in the recipes. Missing are recipes with oysters, recipes for chow-chow, and recipes for corn pie.
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2 Comments 60 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book gives such a delightful insider's view of Amish life that it far surpasses most of the books about Amish life in print. Then you get the bonus of the recipes!

You will find yourself laughing and mourning with Elizabeth as she journeys this life plainly.
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Format: Hardcover
Not only is this book a great read about the personal day to day going ons of Mrs. Coblentz, it is also a great help in the kitchen. Without meaning to, the book seems to pull you into their lives and culture. We are already using many of the recipes in our own home. The pictures are beautiful and leaving you wanting to peek more into their lives. If you are interested in the Amish, as I am, I found this book to be a nice way to be that "fly on the wall"
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Format: Hardcover
I was look for the Beverly Lewis cookbook when I spied this on a shelf at the book store. I looked through it and saw that is was a mix of recipes stories and respectful photos. I bought it right then, and have tried several recipes two of my faves are for Oatmeal Pie and homemade bread. I saw that some people were disappointed in the recipes, (with some appearing to be very "English") But I have noticed that in many of the Amish cookbooks, the truth is that they do eat some of those dishes and they do use some premade items depending on their district.

Overall I was very delighted in this book, it is much more than a cookbook, and I love the stories and information in it too
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
When I lived in New Jersey, I got a chance to go to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and visit the Amish settlement there. It's beautiful countryside, with acres and acres of green farms. I loved the food, most of which seemed to come from the family's farm or the neighbor's farm. When I saw this book was highly lauded, I made sure to get a copy.

Boy, was I disappointed. Maybe my idea of Old Order Amish is wrong. These are certainly not the things I had in Pennsylvania. In fact, these receipes strongly remind me of the kind of things you see in the Better Homes & Gardens or Betty Crocker cookbooks. Not much in the way of going back to the original technique, and more modern foods than I thought would be represented. I get that the Amish do most of the things we do, but I already have enough recipes for pizza. However, I would love more recipes for traditional Amish pies, roasts, and side dishes. This is not that book. I'm still looking for that book, unfortunately. The pictures are beautiful though.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is packed with great recipes, but what makes it even more unique are the little narrative commentaries included with each recipe about the Amish way of life. I really love this book!
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Format: Hardcover
This book is very pretty, with lots of huge photos. It's really more than a cookbook - it includes many columns about the author's Amish life. Made me want to live on a farm!
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Format: Hardcover
I found the book lovely, restful, funny, and full of wonderful tips. Elizabeth, her family and her community really come to life on the pages. I very much enjoyed this book.
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