My daughter Rachel and her husband Luke own a little kitchen/flower boutique in downtown Moscow, and in the midst of the many gray months we have here, it is a very cheery little spot indeed. There is no denying that the winter months here lack color (except for when the snow is gloriously blinding on a bright, clear day). But stepping into the shop can be a helpful poke in the eye to remind us that red and yellow and orange and vivid blue and green are still alive and well, even if they are in hibernation outside.
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â One of the things for sale in this little shop is our churchâ€™s cookbook, Hot Providence. I just want to give it a bit of a plug. Not only does it feature some fantastic recipes (hundreds), but many of the recipes include family stories. I think the Leithart stories may be my favorites. Here is a sample story included with the recipe for Lindsey Cake:
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â You have probably wondered what people do in the South when it gets hot in the summer. Well, we will tell you. They have family reunionsâ€¦all the time, every weekend, and every long distance family member is invited, which usually includes nearly the whole state of Alabama. Momma got this recipe at the Jordan (thatâ€™s her maiden name) Family Reunion in Cullman, Alabama in the early 1990â€™s. She decided to name it after Lindsey because she ate so much of it!
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Now who could resist such a plug for such a cake? Also included in the back of the book are some sample menus, articles on relevant topics like celebrating the Sabbath, how to include little ones in the festivities, and hospitality tips. Itâ€™s really several books in one. One friend of mine said that now that she has a copy, she wonâ€™t need another cookbook for the rest of her life!
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â I like cookbooks, but the fact is, I seldom use more than a handful of the recipes in them no matter how snazzy the cover it. My family just doesnâ€™t go for lamb kabobs (although I bet theyâ€™re fantastic) or underdone tuna with golden raisins. But this cookbook is the real deal from women who know how to feed the troops.Â It will cost you $35.00 for this book, the same price as a much slimmer cookbook with the big name author, slick pics, and a fraction of the recipes. So, Iâ€™m telling you, you wonâ€™t regret dropping the big bucks on this one.
Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Of course there are a few scary recipes in here too, particularly my husbandâ€™s recipe for panjacks. (He invented it when I was sick, and the kids loved it, though I couldnâ€™t participate in their joy.) Â All the men in my family were eager to contribute recipes, for they all have a fondness for food, and they think very worldviewishly (if that is a word) about it, like they do about everything else. One thing about the men in my family, they are participants, so they couldnâ€™t miss an opportunity to contribute to the church cookbook. Thereâ€™s not a spectator in the batch. And whether it is helping with the cooking or grilling, clean-up or set up, being on the kid-watch, providing the after-dinner entertainment for the kids, changing the diapers (I’m not kidding), or removing a fussinâ€™ child from the table for a â€œpep-talk,â€ the men in my family are doing it all. We women couldnâ€™t pull off any of this without them. But I digress. You can order the cookbook from Canon Press.