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Shopworn Copy: Bitter Sweet: A Wartime Journal and Heirloom Recipes from Occupied France (Kitty Morse)

Shopworn Copy: Bitter Sweet: A Wartime Journal and Heirloom Recipes from Occupied France (Kitty Morse)

$38.00 $33.00

Shopworn Copies are final sale and may display slight cosmetic damages such as dinged corners, torn dust jackets and dented spines.   

From the author "a memoir with recipes based upon family documents my mother left me in a little black suitcase I discovered after her death in 2017. The suitcase contained my great-grandfather’s journal chronicling the advance of the Germans in Le Grand Est (formerly Alsace/Lorraine) between April and December 1940, and two little notebooks written in my great-grandmother’s hand, listing about 65 family recipes, translated from the French, tested, and photographed. Bitter Sweet takes place in and around Nancy and Châlons-sur-Marne, today renamed Châlons-en-Champagne, my mother’s birthplace"

PART 1: Excerpt from the Preface: “I’d never come across another suitcase quite like it. But what was the tattered black leather valise doing there, hidden behind a crocheted comforter on the top shelf of my late mother’s closet?… A label lying on top of a cache of sundry photos and documents took my breath away. Written in my grandfather’s hand, it read: Les Archives Complètes des Familles Lévy-Neymark…. Blanche’s portrait partially hid a pocket-size doctor’s notebook, a gift from a Parisian medical laboratory, titled Carnet Médical 1936, listing close to 100 family recipes. Below it, lay Dr. Prosper Levy-Neymarck’s journal chronicling the advance of the Germans  on Alsace Lorraine in 1940…”

PART 2: Excerpt from Prosper’s journal:

9 May 1940

French troops have swept into Nancy. The city has come to life. There is a run on boutiques and grocery stores, especially those selling fine wines and aperitifs. Tailors display their finest military uniforms, at prices that scare off veterans of 1914-1918, whose entire monthly earnings could not begin to cover the cost of a sous-lieutenant’s tunic. Our officers waste gasoline driving aimlessly around town and fall asleep in the shadow of the Maginot Line.

Part 3: Blanche’s Recipes:

More than 65 recipes, many of them illustrated with professional food photography, From New Year’s Eve Endive Salad, Ham-Wrapped Belgian Endives, Cherry Clafoutis, Blanche’s Carrot Cake, Plum Tart, Yule Log, to an Alsatian Zimmetkuchen.