Another secret about me: I rarely read cookbooks. They have to offer something I cannot rely on my trusty Google to provide. When the opportunity presented itself to get a copy of Gena Philibert-Ortega’s From the Family Kitchen, I was intrigued. The cookbook boasted a look into preserving family recipes. I am all about this! My kitchen skills have mostly been passed down from family members so I am totally in tune with learning about why or how a certain dish was conceived. From the Family Kitchen was right up my alley.
Reading about food for me is the same feeling a Harry Potter fan or Twilight reader get when they sit down for the new release from the series. I could forget about my errands for the day and take a journey into the history behind all the dishes we eat and why. From the Family Kitchen takes readers on a journey through food influenced by the Great Depression and World War II to the opening of Delmonico’s in New York which brought out 1838’s most elite clientale. My favorite part, however, is the review list of old cooking terms and their meanings. I suggest Chapter Seven, “Decipher Old Cooking Terms”, be read at least twice if you’re often confused with a menu lined in terms you do not understand.
Like any good book, the ending should leave you feeling glad you read this book. Chapter Nine does just that with “Historical Recipes”. Oyster pie, Pepper Hash and Butter Scotch have awoken my palate and brought me back to the reason I started Johnna Knows Good Food in the first place. Sharing tried and true recipes with friends and family was the goal in November 2008. From the Family Kitchen brought me back to that same feeling in 2008, it’s time to get back to my roots.