Baba's Kitchen: Ukrainian Soul Food with Stories From the Village
Publisher : Dear Companion Publishing
Description

#1 Ukrainian Culture book of 2014 #1 Ukrainian Cookbook #3 Ukrainian Title overall

What do Ukrainians want?

In a rollicking, entertaining read, Baba's Kitchen will lead you into the complex soul of Eastern Europe's Indigenous people.

Ukrainian author Raisa Stone spent 50 years collecting heart wrenching and hilarious stories and 190 recipes from survivors of Soviet and Nazi terror, including her family. Raisa's narrator, Baba (Grandma), is a composite of these invincible souls.

Ukraine has been continuously inhabited by civilized, immensely inventive people for 44,000 years.

What we see in Ukraine's recent events is resistance to hundreds of years of oppression.

For excerpts, audio clips and more, visit: www.ukrainiansoulfood.ca

Ukrainians: first tamed horses, invented pants (for riding!), the bow and arrow, built homes from mammoth bone & pyramids older than Egypt's, & created Europe's first democratic constitution.

Shamanic practices that sparked the original werewolf and Amazon legends (the latter documented by Greek physician Hippocrates) combine with recipes & customs reaching back to the Neolithic era.

#1 Bestseller in European & Ukrainian Cooking

#1 Bestseller in Ukrainian Culture

#4 Bestseller in Ukrainian Books, of 13,000 titles!

~Amazon

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Compared to erotic games in the village bath & shoplifting live turkeys in your bloomers, immigrant life is beyond boring. So Baba (Grandma) is brewing up Old Country customs in her kitchen.

She'll teach you to make delicious Ukrainian dishes (plus simple folk remedies) the traditional & The Lazy Way, sabotage frenemies with garlic, & utter chilling Slavic curses such as, "May you be kicked by a duck!"

Between tales of magical encounters with Nature spirits & steaming bowls of borshch is the true confession of the author's elderly neighbour: she murdered her abusive husband. The deadly story unfolds under the guise of cooking lesson, as unexpectedly as Roald Dahl's Lamb to the Slaughter. Raisa kept her neighbor's secret till after her death.

Veer into the wildly romantic with recipes such as Apple Cake with Wild Rose Preserves. Toast friends & family with the classic Drink of the Gods.

Imagine a mouth watering Honey Onion Sauce that recalls competing with cave bears and wild bees, and the seductive magic of preparing sweet delights for the Apple Harvest Blessing.

190 traditional Ukrainian recipes, taught step by step as if grandma were at your side:

 

  • Borshch, including Vegetarian
  • Holubtsi (Cabbage Rolls)
  • Varenyky (Perogies)
  • Honey Cake
  • Stewed Fruit
  • Traditional Holiday recipes for Easter & Christmas
  • Kolach: Circle of Life Bread

 

*Warning: 18+ Restricted*

 

Wicked acts with honey and raspberries, pirates, cowboys, cossacks, bald men, bad boys and mounted police officers. Be prepared for fish net, scuba divers, body painting, eye rolling & squealing.

 

Your boyfriend/husband is the cause of your PMS! Learn what to do about it.

 

You'll laugh, you'll scream. By the time Baba is through, you'll wet someone else's pants!

 

_____________________________________

 

"Unique, funny, compelling & totally original. Baba is an amazing woman."~Jill McCaw, McCaw Media

"Brilliant humor...down-to-earth spiritual commentary on consciously healthy food for mind, body & planet."~Jason Matthews, author of The Big Bang

"Not only is it one heck of a belly laugh, Baba's Kitchen has recipes for good old fashioned tasty meals that nourish both body & soul." ~Paddy Head, author of Fixed

 



The Story Behind This Book
Raisa Stone spent decades collecting outrageous stories and 190 traditional recipes from Stalinist and Nazi survivors, starting with her own family.

Media Mentions

Praise and Reviews

"The most fun you'll have with recipes.

Buy this book for the fantastic recipes and insights to the wildly lovable mind of Baba (and perhaps Ukrainians in general).

Stretch your stomach muscles first because you will LAUGH HARD from the brilliant humor. Seriously, even if you don't cook just reading this author is a gas.

I really liked the simple perspective on the bigger life pictures within, the down-to-earth spiritual comments about consciously healthy food for mind, body and planet. This book is wonderful."~Jason Matthews, author of The Big Bang

 

"When I ordered this book, I was honestly looking for a cookbook. We recently spent over two months in Ukraine adopting two children. Now that we are home, my 14 year old daughter and I like to cook together.

I had no idea how incredibly funny this book would be. After reading the first chapter on how to make Borshch, I could not put the book down! I was crying, I was laughing so hard during some of her cooking advice, and I am pretty sure I snorted a few times too.

Baba's voice is so true to life. It sounds very similar to how my children speak while they are learning English. In the midst of giving cooking advice in a hilarious and sometimes irreverent manner, the author also gives history lessons about the country that won over my heart recently and gave me two beautiful additions to my family. It's a country that takes great pride in their natural, flavorful food. If you can't get to Ukraine to try the cuisine for yourself, this is the next best thing!

Last Saturday I stained my new copy of this book with beet juice making Baba's recipe for Borshch. The soup took all day to make, and while it was cooking to perfection, I had time to read the story of a woman who murdered her no-good husband with sugar and Baba's opinion of women who wear thongs. Priceless! When the Borshch was finally ready to eat, my Ukrainian children claim it was the best they had ever eaten. Thanks, Baba! I couldn't have pulled that off without you!"

~Noelle Boisvert-Roach


"I loved this. It's not a cook book and it's not (really) an advice book, it's something unique, funny, compelling and totally original. And as a bonus there are recipes thrown in. Baba is an amazing woman and anyone who doesn't appreciate her words of wisdom is obviously missing something vital from their soul. Have fun with Baba, and maybe learn to cook as well."

~Jill McCaw, McCaw Media, New Zealand

"Reads the way my Grandmother talked! This is a cookbook and good 'story' all rolled into one. It reads the way my grandmother and her sisters talked, so of course I enjoyed it. If you want an A-B-C, step by step Ukrainian cookbook without the conversational "flavor" this one has, Baba's Kitchen may not be for you.

That said, if you don't mind your Baba standing over your shoulder telling you how to make these recipes correctly, while filling your head with entertaining and sometimes unrelated conversational anecdotes (all of them worth hearing) along the way, this cookbook is worth having. Unlike every other Ukrainian cookbook I looked through, it has all of the recipes I was looking for, plus a little history and grandmotherly Ukrainian wisdom peppered in along the way. I like that!
~Linda Freeman, Kansas City, Missouri


"Cooking borshch and laughing. This book is like a trip back to Ukraine, complete with the nit picking comments on how I do things. Hilarious. Buy. This. Book."
~Garthrey D. Sponseler


"Baba, I received your book yesterday. How can one cook recipes if laughing at every page?"~Lidia Bodnar Cloherty, Boston, Mass

"You can open this book anywhere and pee your pants laughing. Baba has a unique peasant voice and wonderful advice, like not using the onion with a green top because, 'That one is busy making baby. Have no time for you.'

The recipes are healthy as they champion fresh milk and locally grown produce over food we buy at the "stupormarket". The stories are also timely as Baba makes clear her hate for the Soviets and what they did to her family."~Kathy Hunter, WA


"Raisa, I have just gotten your book Baba's Kitchen:Ukrainian Soul Food and I cannot tell you how absolutely enjoyable it was to read. I have never seen quite such a unique book such as yours. I will be buying a copy for each of my sisters and friends as birthday and Christmas gifts. Fabulous! Fabulous! Fabulous!"~Natalie Tarasiuk Korsh, Toronto

"I LOVE this book. I laughed out loud on so many occasions while reading it.

After getting through the first reading I actually had to go back to find the recipes (I skimmed through them to get to more of Baba's great stories and advice).

Turns out the recipes are great too! I've made a few of them and taken Baba's advice on many other occasions. I highly recommend this book, even if you don't cook!"~Mendy Boyd, Tennessee


"Have just taken delivery of this book, glanced at one page and I know I'm hooked. Haven't laughed at a book so much in ages and can't wait to read the whole thing. Being of Ukrainian descent I can really relate to Baba and like to think that my Babas would've been the same if I'd ever known them. I can't wait to try the recipes as most of them use real food, god forbid anything tinned!! But this book is also food for the soul too....I like it so much (seriously after only reading one page!!) that I'm ordering extra copies as presents for my sisters and girlfriends....genius!"~A. Kuszta, UK
 

"With her pen name 'Baba,' Reisa has concocted a delightful cook book inspired by her many passions and her Ukrainian roots. It’s a lark into a wonderful world – with some horse friendly recipes built right in!"~Marti McGinnis/Iota McHippus, Celebrity Mini Horse, Lexington, Kentucky

"I have a weakness for cookbooks that I can read, and this one has got to be my all-time favorite! Baba is a great teacher, the recipes all look wonderful, but I don't think I have ever had so many laughs from a cookbook.

You are truly led into another world when she talks about Ukraine. And where else do you find advice on how to use duct tape (I laughed out loud)? Thanks Baba, for a great read!"~Linda Doggett, Dayton, Ohio

"I love it. It is funny and filled with great recipes and tips!"~Christina Laryssa Fylonenko, Farmington Hills, Michigan

"Just finished reading this book and have to say I am very happy that I bought it. It was quite funny and the recipes were pretty darned good too. I used to have a Ukrainian baba (we called her Babcia, may her memory be eternal) and reading this book made me think of her. I will be recommending this to Ukie friends."~Donald Davidson, The Cooking Bear, Topeka, Kansas

(Baba say, "Just better not be Soviet bear!")

 

"I am interested in Polish food and was intrigued by the book description. Ukrainian food (and attitudes!!) has much in common with Polish food, and there are many many recipes here. But to call this a cookery book doesn't do it justice it at all!

'Baba' is hilarious. She teaches the hapless wannabe Ukrainian cook (that's the reader) how to make the food that she has always made, and as she does this (and tells you off roundly for your failings in the kitchen!) she chats away telling tales of her life, and anything else that occurs.

Baba is a person, she has a voice. She is so cleverly written that her voice comes over loud and strong and so so funny!

I'll tell you a secret....... I'm part of an Anglo-Polish family (that's not the secret!), although not Polish myself, and have family members in Poland. I have developed a love of Poles and their food. I have a friend who has a similar love of Poland...and we have alter-egos called "Dollink"- we write to each other in character and have lots of fun trying to outdo each other in "dollink- ness". Of course Dollink is a Polish emigre, not Ukrainian. Reading this book - Baba is so like Dollink it's uncanny! I told my friend about Baba and she bought the book immediately - together we laugh uproariously at this kindred spirit. I showed my daughter the book, without explanation .....she read a page and looked at me and said "it's dollink!"

The recipes are given in conversational style, but at the end of each there's a precise list of ingredients too. Experimentation is encouraged, so you can make Baba's recipes your own, and provide endless variety to the many recipes already in the book (I don't know how many, and I don't know how many pages, I didn't count them .... There are a lot!).

None of the TV cooks go to central and Eastern Europe. The food there is overlooked, and that's a huge pity. This food is great, it is healthy and filling and, for these straightened times, it can be economical too. Buy this book for the "Baba" entertainment value - then try the food!

I absolutely intend to cook like Baba, using her recipes. But when I want a laugh, entertainment, or just good reading, I turn to Baba too."~Amazon Customer

 

"This is the best cookbook I've ever seen. I haven't made one recipe from it, but the laughs are worth everything. The recipes are probably good ones too. It sounds like Baba knows what she is talking about. Need a good laugh or two? You will be rolling on the floor."~Rhonda Kalmitz, Oklahoma

 

"I'm halfway through this book and I love it! I'm looking forward to trying some of the recipes. But more than anything else, I love Baba's voice. It feels like she's right there in the kitchen with me, and boy, I'd better smarten up :-)"~Deniz Bevan, writer, Switzerland

 

"OMG be prepared to laugh until your sides hurt. I picked up this book because of the reviews and let me tell you that I am so glad that I did. Baba is one cool, and very funny grandma who I would love to spend the day with cooking lol!

Baba kept me rolling on the floor with laughter until my sides hurt and I really think that everyone should give this comedic cookbook (who would have thought that they would see those two words together lol...comedic cookbook lol) a try...believe me, you will be glad that you did :-)  Your tummy just may thank you for it as well  LOL."~Elizabeth Anderson, Toronto

 

"I have this lovely lady's soul food book. It's one of the best books I've ever had. Good Ukrainian recipes. Her book has history too. She is so funny and down to earth. I can't wait to try the recipes, but I've not stopped laughing as I read. Buy it and see for yourself. It's BRILL! By the way, Baba means 'grandma' in Ukraine."~Jean Makorkij, UK

"Bought this as a gift for a friend of Ukrainian descent. She loves it and I can't wait to taste the recipes."~Eileen McMurdo, UK

 

"Culinary stand-up comedy! I've never thought of reading a cookbook for pure entertainment until I discovered Baba's Kitchen. This delightful book would have even Lily Tomlin in stitches.

Not only is it one heck of a belly laugh, it also has recipes for good, old fashioned, tasty meals that nourish both body and soul. So many modern cookbooks insist on sugar replacements (that kill brain cells) and non-fat ingredients (not to mention non-taste), but not Baba.

In her recipe for Kurka (Chicken) Soup, Baba says, 'Never mind this diet-schmiet peel off skin. Is yellow chicken fat that make so much flavour...'

If you want to make cooking a fun and hilarious experience, Raisa Marika Stohyn's Ukrainian Soul Food  is a must read. And now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to make some of Baba's High Octane Mayonnaise."~Paddy Head, BC, author of Fixed


"I am interested in Polish food and was intrigued by the book description. Ukrainian food (and attitudes!!) has much in common with Polish food, and there are many many recipes here. But to call this a cookery book doesn't do it justice it at all!

"Baba" is hilarious. She teaches the hapless wannabe Ukrainian cook (that's the reader) how to make the food that she has always made, and as she does this (and tells you off roundly for your failings in the kitchen!) she chats away telling tales of her life, and anything else that occurs.

Baba is a person, she has a voice. She is so cleverly written that her voice comes over loud and strong and so so funny!

I'll tell you a secret....... I'm part of an Anglo-Polish family (that's not the secret!), although not Polish myself, and have family members in Poland. I have developed a love of Poles and their food. I have a friend who has a similar love of Poland...and we have alter-egos called "Dollink"- we write to each other in character and have lots of fun trying to outdo each other in "dollink- ness". Of course Dollink is a Polish emigre, not Ukrainian. Reading this book - Baba is so like Dollink it's uncanny! I told my friend about Baba and she bought the book immediately - together we laugh uproariously at this kindred spirit. I showed my daughter the book, without explanation .....she read a page and looked at me and said "it's dollink!"

The recipes are given in conversational style, but at the end of each there's a precise list of ingredients too. Experimentation is encouraged, so you can make Baba's recipes your own, and provide endless variety to the many recipes already in the book (I don't know how many, and I don't know how many pages, I didn't count them .... There are a lot!).

None of the TV cooks go to central and Eastern Europe. The food there is overlooked, and that's a huge pity. This food is great, it is healthy and filling and, for these straightened times, it can be economical too. Buy this book for the "Baba" entertainment value - then try the food!

I absolutely intend to cook like Baba, using her recipes. But when I want a laugh, entertainment, or just good reading, I turn to Baba too."~Amazon Customer

"Grandma on floor laughing so hard cannot stop. Maybe die from laughing. Grandma cannot get up from floor. Baba, who is Ukrainian Grandma, SO so funny. She say very wise sayings. She give good advice. Baba say, 'If they bring you shopping bag full of zucchini and also zucchini loaf, you know they both desperate and hate your guts.'

Grandma thinks Baba SO TRUE! Baba, she knows how to cook, all good food. Baba say beef stock in can read label, all factory floor sweepings. Baba say, 'Cook till dark as real hair color.' How she know? Baba SO funny! Grandma say Baba's book very good, make you laugh, mebbe you learn cook too."~Grandma, New Hampshire



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Raisa Stone
Hello, I'm Raisa Marika Stohyn, usually known as Raisa Stone in North America. I live in BC and love doing storytelling performances and book readings. I've spent a lifetime colle More...
Other Book(s) By Raisa Stone