Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Miriam's Kitchen: A Memoir Paperback – September 1, 1998
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Food memoirs often delve into the meaning of life. This hardly surprises--memories are as essential to daily life as the food that sustains us. Miriam's Kitchen blends recipes and food reminiscences with family narratives and observations about the author's personal evolution as a Jew. Ehrlich weaves the stories from four generations of family life, punctuated with powerful and often tragic memories. While her mother-in-law, Miriam, is teaching her to make chicken livers with noodles, Ehrlich unexpectedly learns how Miriam, her mother, and husband survived a Nazi labor camp in Poland during the Holocaust. Using vivid and bare yet discreet words, she graphically tells what they suffered and the nightmares that still haunt them.
Ehrlich's own story covers her transformation from a child whose family lit Sabbath candles but went boating on Yom Kippur, to an adult who chooses an Orthodox life marked by ambivalence about the rigors of being kosher and pride in what she is passing on to her children. Recipes for Honey Cake, Noodle Pudding, and many others are buried treasures hidden among Ehrlich's intense words. Sadly omitted is a recipe for potato kugel. Her grandmother uses this tempting pudding to good-naturedly test, taunt, and ultimately as the means for accepting her daughter Selina's non-Jewish fiancé into the family. Happily for us, 24 other tempting kosher recipes make up for this one missed dish. Miriam's Kitchen is a gripping and gratifying memoir of food, life, tragedy, and family survival. --Dana Jacobi
From Library Journal
Ehrlich, a former writer for BusinessWeek, writes with humor and passion about her journey from ambivalent Jew to a woman who observes tradition and teaches her children about their ethnic heritage. Her story begins when she meets Miriam, her future mother-in-law, a Polish Holocaust survivor who "guarded culinary specialties in her mind during years when possession and certainties were ripped from her hands." Through Miriam, Ehrlich awakens to dormant memories and traditions in her past and gradually decides that her own family life would have greater meaning if she made her kitchen kosher. The author opens a window on a culture and tradition that her readers may know nothing about, discussing religious and dietary laws and sharing over two dozen recipes for traditional foods. Orthodox readers will likely see themselves in descriptions of the humor and ambivalence involved in trying to incorporate the traditions in today's society. The writing is crisp and smooth. Recommended for public libraries.?Susan Dearstyne, Hudson Valley Community Coll., Troy, N.Y.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
I owned this book several years ago and after completing it donated the volume to a used book sale for charity. This latest copy was purchased a gift for a dear friend who I am sure will enjoy it as much as I did.
For anyone that has ever tried to learn old world recipes and learn to maintain a kosher home/kitchen the book speaks volumes. I know many people say the book is repetitive, and it is. I suppose it doesn't bother me because I understand how many times a person and try and fail at maintaining a kosher kitchen and how many times a recipe can fail despite every good intention.
I am not a mushroom eater but I was particularly interested in the egg salad recipe in the book (It is not listed as the others are, just written about in the short chapter titled, "Egg Salad") I was interested enough to try it and I am glad I did. The cooked onion gives a real warm to the dish and I found that I could get away with very little salt. I used canned mushrooms that I had dried and reheated in the skillet with the onions. Very yum!
The author outlines the main idea that she is trying to convey perfectly in the last paragraph of the introduction. "I embrace them all. I consider the law, the restrictions, the presumptions of happiness, the doubt. I inventory layers of translucent recollection evoking food, love, home, apocrypha, anger, ritual, laughter, conflict and regret. The result is a collage, but also a way of life. That collage is my religion, and it is what I am passing on." (Ehrlich, 1998). This memoir is about wonder and interest, a search for a history, reclamation of tradition, and an integration of that tradition into the modern world.