Food from an American Farm

Janeen A. Sarlin, Author Simon & Schuster $24.45 (0p) ISBN 978-0-671-68499-0
Combining reminiscences with recipes, caterer and teacher Sarlin's book may please readers more than diners. The author evokes her childhood on a Minnesota farm in detail and with vitality; would that her foods matched her prose in freshness and originality. For example, the nuts used in ``Mom's Nut Crust'' are not the butternuts or hickory nuts indigenous to the Upper Midwest, but common red-skinned peanuts. A lineup of sandwich fillings includes recipes for Velveeta with mustard and dill pickles, bologna chopped with mayonnaise and hard-boiled eggs, and a full page on grilled sandwiches made with cheese or meat. No fewer than seven pages cover basic beverages, from sassafras tea to brewed coffee to chocolate milk. Far more intriguing are the recipes coaxed out from cryptic directions left by Sarlin's grandmother. From a few scrawled notes about sugar, sour cream, butter, eggs and soda, mixed ``not very stiff,'' Sarlin and her mother resurrected a scrumptiously tender sugar cookie. As befits a Midwestern farm family, many of the dishes are fried, creamed, buttered and otherwise made rich to silence the appetites of workers who started their days at 4 a.m. Calorie-counters, beware. Photos not seen by PW. Author tour. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/29/1991
Release date: 08/01/1991
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