Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Recipes - 197 words

My family has never been about great-great relatives' customs or the old country. We make the new – sparkling wooden floors and good college education – and leave the old to fade. The rituals we practice are wholly our own, warm and sweetened with the knowledge that they belong exclusively to us. So I never received recipes on crinkled yellow paper, and I am fairly sure that the songs my parents sung to me were chosen for me alone.

I love this way of being, tradition rooted in creation. But a part of me hopes that when I have a daughter, we will sit at the kitchen table kneading bread – her small hands learning to turn and turn again – with Baking With Julia sitting in front of us vanilla-stained and stiff, and I’ll be able to look at her and say, “Look, this is the same book I used when I was a little girl.”

She won’t understand, I think, and maybe by then she will be part of a generation that knows books as mine knows vinyl, as a rich but inconvenient bygotten technology. But I hope not. I am keeping the book for the both of us.

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