Babusya’s Kitchen: Recipes for Living & Eating Well in Ukraine
by Returned Peace Corps Ukraine Volunteers
RPCV Alliance for Ukraine, publisher
Review by: D.W. Jefferson (El Salvador 1974-76, and Costa Rica 1976-77)
This is a beautiful cookbook!
My favorite part is the pictures of dishes ready to serve, but the photos of Ukrainian scenery and people are a close second. The authors/editors are all Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) who served in Ukraine (I love their self-assigned titles so much that I will include them here):
Cortney Copeland — Director of Official Stuff
Patricia Deignan — Voice of Reason and Logic
Sarah Friedman — Communications Wiz
Sandy Jacobs — Culinary Storyteller
Sarah Kate (Monroe) Demchuk — Professional Book Wrangler
Casey Ritter — Captain of Team Morale
Colleen Smith — President of Punctuation
There is a section full of Ukrainian recipes and one full of American and International recipes. There is a section on canning and preserving, one on Ukrainian ingredients and substitutions, and one titled “Peace Corps Volunteer Tips, Tricks, and Hacks for Your Kitchen and Life.”
In addition to the recipes, there is a wealth of information about Ukrainian culture. So even if you do not cook meals from scratch very often, there is much for you to enjoy in this cookbook.
This is the fourth edition of Babusya’s Kitchen, and the first to be printed in hardcover for an international audience. It includes an index to help you quickly find the recipe, ingredient, or other topic you are looking for.
One suggestion for the next edition. My daughter, who is much more into cooking than I am, suggests that it would be really great to add a simple bulleted list of substitutions for quick reference when one is attempting to gather all the ingredients for a specific recipe one wishes to try. By the way she loves the book and has her own copy!
This is a great multicultural cookbook and all proceeds from sales of it go to help Ukrainian families affected by the Russian invasion. So, please buy copies of this book for your friends and family as well as yourself, and enjoy!
D.W. Jefferson was a Peace Corps agriculture volunteer in El Salvador (1974-76) and Costa Rica (1976-77). A blog about his Peace Corps years is at: dwjefferson.blogspot.com He is currently retired from a career in computer software engineering.