Food Family, and Tradition is so much more than a cookbook. It is many books in one. It is a family history, the history of Hungarian Kosher Foods; it is a book about Jewish food and Jewish holiday celebration.
This family’s story is compelling and inspiring. It is amazing to follow the family through multiple generations. Starting in Europe and moving to Chicago, this is an all too well-known Jewish story. Countless Jewish families will no doubt identify with this family’s story. The photographs, maps, etc. make the family’s story come alive.
Several essays written by several family members range from a Jewish approach to healthy eating, to a history of kosher wine (a specialty of Hungarian Kosher foods) to the history of the family kosher grocery store Hungarian Kosher Foods. Part of what makes this book unique is the essay that details this story of the family business, a local store in Chicago that sells exclusively kosher items. This is what enabled the family to rebuild, survive and thrive.
The essay “more than recipes” highlights certain recipes and explains the rationale for including various types of foods in this collection. There is a recipe index in the back to help the reader find a recipe the second time. There is also a table of metric conversions. There are wine pairing tips throughout the book. The recipes vary in degree of sophistication and complexity. The recipes themselves are very traditional. It is a good place to start exploring European culinary roots. (Don’t expect new or modern recipes here.)
The recipes are divided into ten chapters including appetizers, soups, fish dishes, poultry, meat, breads, etc. The photography of the food has a rustic old country feel which is quite appropriate for this book. The design of the book is a little busy, but the little recipe card shaped “extras” are really interesting and will have readers pouring over the pages of this book. There was one error on page 136 that was corrected by a little piece of paper added to the book after printing.
The title of this book is Food, Family, and Tradition and it is just that; the story of this family, their food, and tradition.