In Memory's Kitchen: A Legacy from the Women of Terezin

In Memory's Kitchen: A Legacy from the Women of Terezin


By (author) Michael Berenbaum, Edited by Cara De Silva, Translated by Bianca Steiner Brown

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  • Format: Paperback | 160 pages
  • Dimensions: 145mm x 224mm x 13mm | 204g
  • Publication date: 30 April 2006
  • Publication City/Country: Lanham, MD
  • ISBN 10: 0742546462
  • ISBN 13: 9780742546462
  • Sales rank: 654,642

Product description

The sheets of paper are as brittle as fallen leaves; the faltering handwriting changes from page to page; the words, a faded brown, are almost indecipherable. The pages are filled with recipes. Each is a memory, a fantasy, a hope for the future. Written by undernourished and starving women in the Czechoslovakian ghetto/concentration camp of Terezin (also known as Theresienstadt), the recipes give instructions for making beloved dishes in the rich, robust Czech tradition. Sometimes steps or ingredients are missing, the gaps a painful illustration of the condition and situation in which the authors lived. Reprinting the contents of the original hand-sewn copybook, In Memory's Kitchen: A Legacy from the Women of Terezin is a beautiful memorial to the brave women who defied Hitler by preserving a part of their heritage and a part of themselves. Despite the harsh conditions in the Nazis' "model" ghetto - which in reality was a way station to Auschwitz and other death camps - cultural, intellectual, and artistic life did exist within the walls of the ghetto. Like the heart-breaking book I Never Saw Another Butterfly, which contains the poetry and drawings of the children of Terezin, the handwritten cookbook is proof that the Nazis could not break the spirit of the Jewish people.

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Author information

Cara De Silva is an award-winning journalist, whose writings have appeared in Newsday, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times Syndicate, The New York Daily News, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Eating Well, Martha Stewart Living, Cuisine, and Diversion. In addition, she has been featured on local, national, and international television and radio shows, including The News Hour with Jim Lehrer (PBS), The Morning Show (CNN), All Things Considered (NPR), and The Voice of America. She lives in New York, NY.

Review quote

A monument to the women of Terezin who saw beyond indescribable horror and sent the food of their hearts to nourish ours. Newsweek The work of women whose memories were distorted by starvation, the book born in Terezin is both intimate and disturbing-a poignant reminder of a lost world and a spirit that refused to die. People Magazine Not a cookbook, though it has seventy recipes, but a Holocaust document, compiled as an act of defiance in a concentration camp The New York Times Those brave women contributed something of tremendous value, not simply an historical document but a lesson in humanity. Los Angeles Times A story of the survival of the spirit amid the horrors of the Holocaust. The New York Times Cooking is this book's subject matter, but survival is its theme; it is both moving and paradoxical that this material was collected by starving internees. Library Journal Their food comes not from the concentration camp, but from their pasts, from the days when they had cooked in freedom, when they had dinners to plan and holidays to celebrate. Associated Press The precious pages of Mina Pachter's cookbook are full of snapshots of life before and during World War II, inside and outside the concentration camps. Review Of Higher Education A story of recipes and resistance. Pbs, Jim Lehrer News Hour

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Foreword Chapter 2 Acknowledgments Chapter 3 Introduction Chapter 4 MINA'S COOKBOOK Chapter 5 Recipes Chapter 6 Recipe List for the original manuscript Chapter 7 Practical Notes Chapter 8 Poems by Wilhelmina (Mina) Pachter Chapter 9 Letters by Wilhelmina (Mina) Pachter Chapter 10 Wilhelmina Pachter: A Biographical Sketch Chapter 11 Bibliography