Author: Sherry Gore
Spiral Concealed: 256 pages
Unbeknownst to many folks outside the Amish Mennonite population in America, Pinecraft, Florida - a village tucked away in the heart of Sarasota - is the vacation paradise of the Plain People. Unlike any other Plain community in the world, this village is a virtual melting pot of Amish and Mennonites from around the world, intermingled with people, like author Sherry Gore’s family, who live there year-round.My Thoughts:
Gore has put together a cookbook that represents the people who make Pinecraft unique. With hundreds of easy-to-prepare recipes, 16 full-color photographs and black-and-white photographs throughout, this cookbook includes traditional favorites such as Sweet Potato Sweet Mash and Mrs. Byler’s Glazed Donuts, as well as Florida favorites including Fried Alligator Nuggets, Grilled Lime Fish Fillets, and Strawberry Mango Smoothies. Interspersed with the recipes are true-life stories about births, engagements, weddings, deaths, funerals, celebrations, wildlife encounters, and accidents told through years of Sherry’s Letters from Home column published in The Budget, the Amish newspaper. This delightful cookbook offers readers a faith-based, family-focused perspective of the simple way of life of the Plain People. It is truly a breath of fresh air from Sarasota, Florida!
This delightful cookbook was originally inspired by the lack of a community cookbook. Sherry Gore wanted to gift her friend a cookbook that represented her Pinecraft community located in Sarasota, FL, but sadly couldn't find any. She gathered recipes from the local women and also posted in The Budget (a well-known and read Amish paper) for recipes from those that may have visited the Pinecraft community in the past. This task took over three years and more than 700 recipes to weed through before "Simply Delicious Amish Cooking" was born.
When skimming the pages, one will first come across the story of the community, cookbook, the Amish and their beliefs as well as information about The Budget and how it can be obtained. Then comes the sections with the delicious recipes and story excerpts taken from The Budget creating a wonderful blend of food and stories to delight the soul. One soon discovers how important food is to the Amish and Mennonite communities.
I took my time testing and cooking recipe after recipe from "Simply Delicious Amish Cooking" and the title could not be any more correct or self-explanatory! The recipes are simple, using basic ingredients and they are delicious!!! Be prepared to find recipes for Honey Whole Wheat, to Amish Bean Soup, to Hand-Breaded Pork Chops and Creamy Country Gravy to some of the most delightful (and sinful) desserts like Final Exam Brownies. At the end is a chapter called "This and That" and it has recipes for things that didn't seem to fit in the other categories such as Zucchini Relish and Apple Butter.
Every recipe I tried was very, very good. The family wanted seconds and family and friends demanded (yes - you read that right) the recipes. There were a few recipes that called for ingredients that I didn't have on hand because of our location, but then again, I'm not sure if I would really want to try the Alligator Stew. I, too, like to cook simple and that really doesn't fit into my line of simple thinking.
This cookbook is a treasure of both recipes and stories and would make the most wonderful gift for anyone on your gift-list as well as a copy for yourself. It comes highly recommended by all who have tasted the recipes from it so far and I know a few of those have went out and purchased their own copies!
I received this book through the Booksneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review, but instead, one that gives my honest opinion.