Cooking

A Continual Feast

Author(s): 
Evelyn Birge Vitz
Copyright: 
1991
Publisher: 
Ignatius Press
Binding: 
Paperback
Subject(s): 
Grade / Age level: 
Review: 

My cooking is simple, ordinary, and I seldom follow recipes. But one recipe I have gone back to again and again is the Four-Egg Cake in A Continual Feast cookbook by Evelyn Birge Vitz. That is a wonderful sacrament cake--First Holy Communions, Confirmations, Baptisms, Weddings-- I have made it again and again, for over twelve years, and have had consistent, excellent results!

The recipe is a wonderful from-scratch experience, and the kids love to help as each step progresses towards a marvelous tasting result! Vitz' book is much more than a cookbook, it is a lesson in Catholic traditions in the kitchen.... I have recommended it for so many years!

Perspective: 
Catholic
Review Date: 
2-27-2010
Reviewed by: 

Building the Family Cookbook

Book cover: 'Building the Family Cookbook'
Author(s): 
Suzanne Fowler
Copyright: 
2003
Publisher: 
The Light Weigh
Binding: 
Catholic
Number of pages: 
336 pages
Subject(s): 
Review: 

Building the Family Cookbook by Suzanne Fowler is not your typical cookbook. Although the layout is similar to most church cookbooks with a comb binding that allows it to lay flat for reading, the contents include much more than recipes. The opening pages include such Catholic topics as "A Recipe for a Happy Life," based on scripture, "The Importance of the Family", based on the words of John Paul II, the value of a family eating meals together, some advice from other moms on motherhood, practical ideas for building a Catholic family, and more.

The book then follows the Liturgical Year's feast days with Saint's feast day or other feasts and includes a short biography of the saint or a description of the feast day along with a recipe for the day. Because the book follows the Liturgical Year, there is not a recipe for every single day.

The recipes vary. One day will be a main dish. The next day is a dessert. Surprisingly, the recipes are not the typical "diet" variety. In other words, the "St. Therese Fudge Brownies" have real butter and don't skimp on sugar. That is because The Light Weigh program allows the person to eat any type of food, just limited to small quantities. You do not need to be familiar with The Light Weigh program to enjoy the recipes or benefit from the wisdom of the book. But if you would like more information about The Light Weigh program, you can contact Suzanne at the webpage listed below.

The book closes with more advice on building a happy family, sources for the feast day information and an index to the recipes. Following her practical advice, sharing these wonderful saint stories, and enjoying these delicious recipes is a sure way to achieve Suzanne's goal of making dinner time your family's favorite time.

Perspective: 
Catholic
Review Date: 
4-21-04
Reviewed by: 

Tea and Cake with the Saints

A Catholic Young Lady's Introduction to Hospitality and the Home Arts
Author(s): 
Alice Cantrell
Copyright: 
2007
Publisher: 
Little Way Press
Binding: 
Spiralbound
Number of pages: 
108 pages
Grade / Age level: 
Review: 

Catholic Heritage Curricula has done it again, delivering a beautiful resource that uplifts and instructs in their “gentle but thorough” tradition. This exquisitely designed and illustrated book is a perfect introduction to hospitality for girls aged 8-12 years old.

The book is divided by the seasons and includes tea party recipes and craft instructions for suggested feast days in each season. Tucked within those pages are lovely illustrations as well as instruction on little things that come up when you are puttering around the kitchen with your daughter, such as the difference between baking soda and baking powder, or the proper way to set the table. It includes special projects as well, such planting a Mary garden and making a gardening apron. Poetry and snippets from fine literature are placed graciously throughout the text.

Near the beginning is an explanation of how to make and keep a homemaking notebook. I am so delighted to see that. I remember thumbing through my Grandmother’s notebook and always wishing my mother kept one. What a great tradition for mother and daughter to work on together!

Even though I kept thinking of doing these things with my daughter as I read the book, it is really a book for the daughter. It is written and designed for her, from the handy smaller size of the book (7" X 10") to the larger-sized text font and the inviting illustrations. And the whole book—from its genteel ideas to its genteel presentation—is an invitation to graciousness that young girls will have a hard time resisting.

Perspective: 
Catholic
Review Date: 
11-5-2007
Reviewed by: