Tag Archives: Amish

Book Review: The Essential Amish Cookbook

9 May

Taste the goodness of Amish life.

Bestselling cookbook author and food columnist Lovina Eicher brings together the best of Amish cooking in The Essential Amish Cookbook: Everyday Recipes from Farm and Pantry. Join Eicher as she shares traditional Amish recipes along with her own kitchen tips and secrets. Growing up, Eicher learned to cook and bake at an early age alongside her mother, longtime columnist and Amish cookbook author Elizabeth Coblentz, and has put those skills to use in her own Amish kitchen as she cooks for her eight children.

The easy-to-follow, authentic recipes you’ll find in The Essential Amish Cookbook are prepared every day in countless homes in Old Order Amish communities across North America. Many of the more than 100 recipes are richly illustrated with step-by-step photographs to help you learn Amish cooking just as if you were in Lovina’s kitchen. From hearty main dishes to substantial sides–plus a generous sampling of scrumptious cakes, pies, cookies, and other delectable desserts — learn how to make the hearty, simple dishes that the Amish cook together and serve at home, church services, and weddings.

In a fast-food, digital world, the book’s colorful photos and conversational tone provide a real taste of Amish life and invite you to slow down. Your family will come to love her Zucchini Chocolate Chip Bread, Rhubarb Juice, Roast Beef with Veggies, Oven Crusted Chicken, pickles, jams, and so much more. Experience the simple joys of Amish life–food, faith and family!

Lovina Eicher, an Old Order Amish cook, writer, and mother, penned The Amish Cook newspaper column that her mother, Elizabeth Coblentz, began in 1991. Now writing her column under a new name, Lovina’s Amish Kitchen, Eicher is the coauthor of several cookbooks, including The Amish Cook at Home, The Amish Cook’s Anniversary Book, and Amish Cooks Across America.

My Impressions:

Not only do the foods featured in The Essential Amish Cookbook look good, they taste good too. In fact the ones I tried were delicious and begged for second helpings. Lovina Eicher’s book includes recipes that are family and community tested, so you know your family will love them too. The book is a feast for the eyes with beautiful photographs not only of the food, but the Amish countryside as well. Recipes are grouped as you would expect — Breakfast Foods, Vegetables and Sides, Desserts and Candies, etc. — with many ending in a personal note by the author. But as a special added bonus,the author features Amish Church Meals and Amish Wedding Meals with extensive background on both.

I made two recipes (so far) — Breakfast Casserole and Peanut Butter Dream Bars. Both were big hits. The instructions were easy to follow and the ingredients, many of which were in my pantry, easy to acquire. I made the Breakfast Casserole at our small cabin in the mountains. This make-ahead dish was easy to accomplish in my tiny kitchen, and it made a great pre-church meal.

For a bit of down-home goodness packaged in a lovely book, The Essential Amish Cookbook, would make a great gift for your favorite foodie. And remember Mother’s Day is just around the corner; mom will love this!


Highly Recommended.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(Thanks to Herald Press and MennoMedia for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)


September Book Club Picks

2 Sep

September marks the anniversaries of both my book clubs. By The Book celebrates 14 years of meeting and Page Turners marks its 4 year! Time flies when you have so much fun! Both groups are reading Christian fiction this month — Ties That Bind by Cindy Woodsmall for By The Book and The Ringmaster’s Wife by Kristy Cambron for Page Turners. I’m looking forward to great discussions and I hope a little something special for each group.


UnknownAriana’s comfortable Old Order Amish world is about to unravel. Will holding tightly to the cords of family keep them together—or simply tear them apart?

Twenty-year-old Ariana Brenneman loves her family and the Old Ways. She has two aspirations: open a café in historic Summer Grove to help support her family’s ever-expanding brood and to keep any other Amish from being lured into the Englisch life by Quill Schlabach.

Five years ago Quill, along with her dear friend Frieda, ran off together, and Ariana still carries the wounds of that betrayal. When she unexpectedly encounters him, she soon realizes he has plans to help someone else she loves leave the Amish.
Despite how things look, Quill’s goal has always been to protect Ariana from anything that may hurt her, including the reasons he left. After returning to Summer Grove on another matter, he unearths secrets about Ariana and her family that she is unaware of. His love and loyalty to her beckons him to try to win her trust and help her find a way to buy the café—because when she learns the truth that connects her and a stranger named Skylar Nash, Quill knows it may upend her life forever.

Ties That Bind is the first novel in the Amish of Summer Grove series.


51ljwwXk0hL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200_An ounce of courage.

A leap of faith.

Together, they propel two young women to chase a new life — one that’s reimagined from what they might have become.

In turn-of-the-century America, a young girl dreams of a world that stretches beyond the confi nes of a quiet life on the family farm. With little more than her wit and a cigar box of treasures, Mable steps away from all she knows, seeking the limitless marvels of the Chicago World’s Fair. There, a chance encounter triggers her destiny—a life with a famed showman by the name of John Ringling.

A quarter of a century later, Lady Rosamund Easling boards a ship to America as a last adventure before her arranged marriage. There, the twenties are roaring, and the rich and famous gather at opulent, Gatsby-esque parties. The Jazz Age has arrived, and with it, the golden era of the American circus, whose queen is none other than the enigmatic Mable Ringling.

When Rosamund’s path crosses with Mable’s and the Ringlings’ glittering world, she makes the life-altering decision to leave behind a comfortable future of estates and propriety, choosing instead the nomadic life of a trick rider in the Ringling Brothers’ circus.

A novel that is at once captivating, deeply poignant, and swirling with exquisite historical details of a bygone world, The Ringmaster’s Wife will escort readers into the center ring, with its bright lights, exotic animals, and a dazzling performance that can only be described as the Greatest Show on Earth!

Book Review: Gather around The Amish Table

21 Sep

GatherAroundTheAmishTableStraight from Amish kitchens to yours, this cookbook offers favorite family recipes and charming stories from Amish and Mennonite cooks.

Bake the pecan rolls that taste best after an ice-skating party, or try the hoagies that a community sold to help an Amish family with hospital bills. Discover the cocoa cupcakes with instructions to “stir by hand” that one young cook took literally, or whip up the whoopie pies that one Amish woman took to market in her horse and buggy.

These cherished recipes speak of comforting traditions, lively communities, and strong Christian faith. Gather your family around the table to sample the nourishing fare and trademark charm of the plain people. In the words of one cookbook contributor: “Bake someone happy!”

Lucy Leid is an Old Order Mennonite wife, mother, and cook in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.


My Impressions:

CO97xEXWIAEZ3CuI love cookbooks! Now I don’t always use them, but I love looking through them, savoring the delicacies that I could make if I wished. Well, I actually used Gather around The Amish Table — a definite sign that this cookbook is a keeper. 😉 Beautiful photographs and stories of family and friends gathered around a table make this cookbook something special. And the recipes are for food you can actually serve to your family. Easy to understand recipes for comfort food — yum! I’ll definitely be revisiting this one for family meals and potlucks. I made Lillian’s Lemon Bars for a recent book club event and not one was left for the trip home. There’s also a section that has recipes for non-edible treats (at least by humans) like Pantry Plant Food. I love those little extras.

Great for a housewarming or bridal shower gift, Gather around The Amish Table is recommended by this reader/operator.


To purchase this book, click HERE.

(Thanks to LitFuse for a review copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)


Incorporate Amish cooking traditions this fall in your kitchen with Lucy Leid’s Gather Around the Amish Table. Straight from Amish kitchens to yours, this cookbook offers favorite family recipes and charming stories from Amish and Mennonite cooks. Gather your family around the table to sample the nourishing fare and trademark charm of the plain people. In the words of one cookbook contributor: “Bake someone happy!”.

Get your fall baking underway with an Amish baking basket giveaway from Lucy and MennoMedia!

One grand prize winner will receive:
A copy of Gather Around the Amish Table
An Amish baking basket full of goodies

Enter today by clicking HERE. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 29th. The winner will be announced September 30th on the Litfuse blog.