Monday, December 31, 2012

My Berlin Kitchen

I love me a good book on cooking/baking. My Berlin Kitchen is a new memoir by the blogger behind the Wednesday Chef. Luisa chronicles her post college years of trying to figure her life, career, and relationships with her parents and her boyfriends. All while also trying to discover where exactly in the world she belongs (having grown up between America and Germany).

Each chapter is a really easy read, very much the style I have come to expect by lady food bloggers who have cranked out memoirs. There is a certain recipe to these books I think. 

1 girl who doesn't quite fit in anywhere but the kitchen
1/4 of a life crisis
2.5 trips to Paris
-1 job
2 or more relationships going wrong
3 cookie recipes

Mix the above. Blog until frothy. Garnish with wedding. 

And as one who stress-bakes cookies like a bandit, I can relate to them easily, even if my family cooking/baking traditions rely heavily on gravy/Crisco. At the end of almost every chapter there is a recipe or two that had been featured. I dutifully copied several into my kitchen binder and even managed to make one of the easier ones, Omelette Confiture. Whisked egg cooked and rolled up like a crepe with tart jam and a sprinkle of powdered sugar. It was such a big hit between Geoff and I that I think it might be the only way I want eggs from now on. I am excited to try a few other recipes. 

Weiss' life is spent in many parts of the world, and the book makes me long to see more of Europe. Europeans clearly still have a much better sense of community than most of America, Weiss talks about how neighbors would have large parties for each other and the delight in cooking and eating with her different family members. It being the holidays now, I found myself drawn to her descriptions of varied holiday traditions she has experienced. I'm really planning on recreating the German Doughnut one where a plate full of jam-filled doughnuts is served and everyone bites to discover who got the doughnut full of mustard. 

This isn't a very heavy book (despite all of the German cooking) but rather a nice read that goes where you expect it will. I do want to state that while I understand the publishing appeal for these lady blogging books to end almost immediately after the woman gets married, it really gets my goat. Sometimes it's best to make substitutions.

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