Sunday, December 05, 2010

52 Books in 52 Weeks: Book 47

My sister-in-law sent me a copy of A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg for my birthday. I was pretty excited to receive this memoir/recipe collection recounting Molly's coming to age and finding love.

It was a sweet book with several passages that felt like they could be describing my own life; especially the ones about the importance that her family placed on eating and cooking together.

I related more to the first portion of the book and was tempted by many of the recipes: Banana Bread with Chocolate and Crystallized Ginger, Dutch Baby Pancakes with Lemon and Sugar, and Rum Cream Pie with Graham Cracker Crust, to name a few.

The later portion shares how she met her husband {through her renowned blog, Orangette}. At this juncture, the recipes shift to a more vegetarian-style with a blend of ingredients that would not be high on my list to combine for a meal. I am sure they are fabulous but she lost me when she started in on the seemingly endless salads. I was not regaled by these recipes which included ingredients like red cabbage and anything pickled. While I love to cook, I guess I am not enough of a foodie to join in on Molly's full repertoire of recipes.

A Homemade Life is a quick read and if you love to make your dinners from scratch, it is definitely worth a look.

A few of the passages that I really liked:
"You know, we eat better at home than most people do in restaurants." ...What was so satisfying, I think, was... the steady rhythm of meeting in the kitchen every night, sitting down at the table, and sharing a meal. Dinner didn't come through a swinging door, balanced on the arm of an anonymous waiter: it was something we made together.

I guess whatever you grow up with seems normal. It's your life, no matter what it is.

In spite of the potato salad, pound cake, and pain au chocolat, I believed deep down that mine was a childhood of tragic deprivation. My parents put a tight cap on processed foods, which meant no toaster pastries, no grape-flavored bubble gum, no cinnamon-flavored cereal, and none of those shiny, single-portion packets of fruit punch with a tiny straw attached.

...It's hard to love someone, I've found, when you're preoccupied with holding your entire world firmly in place. Loving someone requires a certain amount of malleability, a willingness to be pulled along, or at least occasionally, by another person's will.

...if the best day of our lives is our wedding day, we thought, what the hell comes afterward? didn't need to be the best day ever. In fact, we sincerely hoped that, in the long-term scheme of things, it wouldn't be.

"I have learned not to worry about love, but to honor its coming with all my heart."

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