I LOVE to cook. Or maybe it is that I love to eat, and I know that in order to enjoy something delicious I need cook something delicious first. I'm not a picky eater at all, but I do live with a few, so dinners can be very hit-or-miss in our house. I get nervous to try anything new for the picky ones, but I'm almost always sure to like it. This make my repertoire of meals seem repetitive at times. I'm all about trying new things, but if a meal isn't a hit all around, it tends not to make it to the dinner table again. All of that being said, I am on the constant search for recipes, so when I had the opportunity to review Gather Around The Amish Table by Lucy Leid, I was super excited.
What is wonderful about this cookbook, aside from all of the mouth-watering recipes, is that several of the recipes throughout are accompanied by short stories from the person/family that submitted the recipe. The author, Lucy Leid, is an Old Order Mennonite who lives in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. She came up with the idea for this unique-style cookbook from a newsletter called Die Botschaft. This was a weekly newsletter that delivered news from all around several of the Amish communities across the United States. Included in this newsletter, was a section called Ivverich und Ender which means "what's left over, the ends". In this section would be all of the miscellaneous material, including recipes. Sharing recipes is a beautiful act of care, and Leid wanted to create Gather Around The Amish Table to celebrate the tried and true recipes from the Amish tables across the nation. She required those who submitted recipes to also provide a snippet of information about the recipe or a story to accompany it. This way, while you are cooking, baking and preparing meals for your family, you can read the funny and heartfelt stories of how they were born.
So, the first recipe that I tried out of this cookbook was the Bacon Beef Balls, however, they disappeared so quickly that I never had the opportunity to capture them. They were so, so, so good, and I will make them over and over again. They are like a meatballs with rice and bacon inside of it, topped with a savory tomato sauce. The next recipe I tried were the Drop Biscuits, because they were easy, and went well with our ham, pineapple, and mashed potatoes. They turned out wonderful as well. And, because I have a super sweet tooth and love me some chocolate, I also made the Moist Chocolate Cake. We ate that all in a couple of days. I don't know if I should be proud of this or embarrassed. I topped it with my own marshmallow frosting, but the cake was divine. It is very moist, and heavy, but in a good way. And the best part? The cake batter does not contain eggs, so I didn't have to feel guilty letting the kids lick the beaters. Actually, the best part of cooking from scratch is that you know what you are putting onto your plates, and furthermore, into your bodies.
This cookbook is categorized, so finding recipes is a breeze. Each page has a colored strip that runs across the top. Each section has its own color, and each particular section's name is displayed at the top corner of the page as well. I found it very easy to navigate. Some recipes I am really looking forward to trying out are the: Favorite Soft Pretzels, Easy Hamburger Soup, Amish Macaroni Salad, Onion Rings, Chicken Pot Pie, Glazed Peach Pie, S'More Bars, Yoder's Eight-Minute Cheesecake and Real Lemonade. As you can see, there are an array of different recipes throughout this cookbook.
I highly Recommend Gather Around The Amish Table by Lucy Leid with 10 stars:
If you are interested in purchasing your own copy of this cookbook, you can do so here. Please be sure to read some of the other Lifuse reviews here.