My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story, with Recipes

My Berlin Kitchen: A Love Story, with Recipes

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by Luisa Weiss, Angela Dawe
     
 

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It takes courage to turn your life upside down, especially when everyone is telling you how lucky you are. But sometimes what seems right feels deeply wrong. My Berlin Kitchen tells the story of how one thoroughly confused, kitchen-mad romantic broke off her engagement, quit her dream job, and went across the ocean in search of happiness.

Luisa Weiss was working in

Overview

It takes courage to turn your life upside down, especially when everyone is telling you how lucky you are. But sometimes what seems right feels deeply wrong. My Berlin Kitchen tells the story of how one thoroughly confused, kitchen-mad romantic broke off her engagement, quit her dream job, and went across the ocean in search of happiness.

Luisa Weiss was working in New York after college and living with her future fiancé when she decided to bake, roast, and stew her way through the huge collection of recipes she’d been clipping and hoarding for years. The blog she wrote to document her adventures, The Wednesday Chef, soon became a sensation. But she never stopped longing for her childhood home in Berlin. After months of heartache and a painful breakup, Luisa decided to take the plunge and move back to Berlin.

Anyone who enjoyed Julie and Julia will laugh and cheer and cook alongside Luisa as she takes us into her heart and tells us how she gave up everything, only to find love waiting where she least expected it. Luisa will seduce you with stories of hunting for an apartment with her new German boyfriend, battling with white asparagus at the tail end of the season, orchestrating an awkward three-family Thanksgiving dinner, and working through the difficulties of settling into her new life by baking batches (and batches) of impossible German Christmas cookies.

She will have you rooting for Max, the first man to really understand her divided heart. And she will convince you that while Paris has its magic, when it comes to real inspiration in the kitchen, and in life, there is nothing like Berlin.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Readers of Weiss's popular cooking blog, thewednesdaychef.com, know some of her personal history: a childhood split between her father in Boston and her mother in Berlin, her young adulthood working in publishing in New York City, the broken engagement and subsequent move to Berlin, followed by falling in love all over again with the city and the man who would eventually become her husband. This memoir fills in some of the blanks, exploring the loneliness and alienation of a child who never quite feels at home wherever she is, the postcollege time in Paris when she learned that "there was no shame in realizing that living in Paris was far less magical than visiting it," and the debilitating heartbreak when an important relationship fails. But there is plenty of joy, too: summers at her grandparents' Italian farmhouse, falling in love, and, always, the pleasures of the kitchen. Each chapter closes with a recipe for a dish referenced in the text, most of which represent one of the places Weiss has called home: German dishes like Pflaumenkuchen (yeasted plum cake) and Erbsensuppe (pea soup), Italian specialities like Peperoni al Forno Conditi (roasted pepper salad) and Bracioline di Antonietta (grilled beef skewers), French fare including Braised Endives and Poulet Sauté à la Paysanne Provençale (a rustic chicken dish), and a few American dishes, like her father's recipe for something called Depression Stew. VERDICT This charming food memoir will prove enjoyable to anyone who loves Laurie Colwin or M.L.K. Fisher.—Stephanie Klose, Library Journal

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781469236421
Publisher:
Brilliance Audio
Publication date:
08/27/2013
Edition description:
Unabridged
Product dimensions:
5.37(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.50(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
“Luisa Weiss’s piquant memoir has charm, heartbreak, family history, and recipes galore.”
Elle

“The new Julie & Julia! It’s part cookbook and part memoir; you’ll finish a chapter and find yourself in the kitchen following the recipe Weiss includes . . . A transcontinental romance about taking risks in life and in the kitchen.”
—Marie Claire

“For anyone who's ever moved away from home, only to find that nowhere in the world is quite as special, My Berlin Kitchen is a lovely (and delicious-recipe-filled) read.”
Serious Eats

“There are love stories, and then there are love stories. Luisa Weiss’s falls into the latter category, an honest-to-god tale of love lost, found, and happily ended. And, as a bonus, there’s food. Indeed, every page is more delightful and delicious than the one before. Brimming with forty recipes borrowed from Weiss’s friends and family and from famous chefs like Alice Waters and Jamie Oliver, then stripped down and perfected by Weiss herself, the book is a mix of travelogue, memoir, cookbook, and a touch of fairytale.”
East Bay Express

“A mouthwatering tribute to Berlin and a love letter to food, romance and following your heart. . . . Weiss vividly evokes the flavors of German, Italian, and American cuisine. . . . The characters around each table come to life as vibrantly as the food, and Weiss adds helpful hints to the recipes that crown each chapter.”
Shelf Awareness

“A heartwarming (and often mouth-watering) memoir, German-born chef and writer Weiss recounts how . . . through hardship and heartbreak, she found solace among saucepans and stews. . . . Foodies and nonfoodies alike will enjoy chapters brimming with colorful cooking tales and savory recipes.”
Allison Block, Booklist (starred review)

“A thoughtful, earnestly winning memoir.”
Publishers Weekly

“This charming food memoir will prove enjoyable to anyone who loves Laurie Colwin or M.L.K. Fisher.”
Library Journal

“I hope you’re prepared to clear a day or two of your schedule once you open this book, because you’re not going to want to put it down to do anything—well, anything but make a beeline for the kitchen to make a rolled omelet or fake baked beans. Luisa has a way of telling her story that’s nothing short of entrancing.”
—Deb Perelman, creator of Smitten Kitchen

“A beautiful and inspiring story about how we sometimes have to take a leap of faith to follow our life’s passion. I was so charmed by Luisa Weiss’s honesty, vulnerabilities, and beautiful writing—all while craving braised endives. A lovely, remarkable, and delicious tale of the romance of a lifetime.”
—Kathleen Flinn, author of The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry

My Berlin Kitchen is a truly remarkable memoir, told with sensitivity and honesty. Filled with the emotions—and flavors—of a life that spans three cultures and cuisines, this is a book you won't want to put down, except to make its enticing recipes.”
—David Lebovitz, bestselling author of The Sweet Life in Paris

“Luisa Weiss writes with grace and ease about her search for a sense of belonging in My Berlin Kitchen. That she also cooks appealing dishes and writes beautifully about food only adds dimension to her wonderful memoir. You will read with intense delight, cheering her on through heartbreak and triumphs.”
—Amanda Hesser, cofounder of Food52 and author of The Essential New York Times Cookbook and Cooking for Mr. Latte

“Luisa’s heartfelt and engrossing memoir will resonate deeply with anyone who’s ever sensed the profound connection between the food we eat and our sense of home.”
—Clotilde Dusoulier, creator of Chocolate & Zucchini and author of Clotilde’s Edible Adventures in Paris

“Part culinary journal, part love story, My Berlin Kitchen chronicles a young woman’s (often) difficult task of finding her way in the world. With the charm and honesty that is characteristic of her wonderful blog, Luisa Weiss has crafted a book that leaves a deep impression.” —Heidi Swanson, creator of 101 Cookbooks and bestselling author of Super Natural Cooking

Meet the Author

Luisa Weiss was born in West Berlin and spent her childhood shuttling back and forth between her Italian mother in Berlin and her American father in Boston. She started her much loved and highly acclaimed food blog, The Wednesday Chef, in 2005, and has worked as a literary scout and cookbook editor in New York. She now lives in Berlin with her husband and son.

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