A rabbi once advised Brody that a Jewish mother's duties include "keeping the memories," and Brody has obliged with this warmly written collection of remembrances and recipes.
Chapters range from "Good-bye," a touching description of sitting shivah (an observance following the death of a loved one), to a lighthearted essay on "Casseroles--or What Are You Trying to Hide?" Brody blends childhood memories with experiences in raising her own youngsters and writes with such sensitivity that it is not surprising to hear her say her next book might be a novel with recipes.
"Cooking with Memories" is being promoted in conjunction with Jewish book month, which extends to Hanukkah (December 24). Although the book is predominantly Jewish in theme, there is a chapter inspired by memories of a friend's Christmas cookie baking and followed by a recipe for springle.
Other tempting recipes include a brandied bread pudding made with leftover croissants, rugelach, honey cake and, on the savory side, stuffed cabbage, chicken soup, baked brisket and what Brody considers "the best brisket sandwich."