Sunday, March 25, 2007
Miriam's Kitchen by Elizabeth Erlich is another former book club pick. I think I liked it better than most, but then again, observant readers will note I have some sort of "food memoir" obsession. The story weaves together the author's family history, focusing on Jewish identity or lack thereof, with tales of learning to cook various kosher recipes from the author's mother-in-law, Miriam. From the author's perspective embracing her identity as a Jew is about how she chooses to act, ie, keeping kosher as an adult when her family never had before. The book also explains the challenges of a kosher kitchen, such as many sets of dishes and how one goes about "purifying" the dishwasher. It also drives home how, for better or worse, the rules of keeping kosher are resting primarily on women.