When Eleanor Hinsch was only 10 years old, she had already spent many days in her parents’ German delicatessen in Brooklyn, N.Y. Fascinated by the food they prepared every day, she began candling eggs and peeling hot potatoes while also writing down the recipes she liked.She didn’t realize that, five decades later, those recipes would be popular favorites in her recently published cookbook, “German Recipes: Five Generations of Family Recipes.”“From sauces and salad dressings to soups, breads, desserts, and main dishes, if you can’t find something yummy in these pages to try, you probably aren’t looking,” said Jennifer Kimble in the U.S. Review of Books. “Its’ a collection of hearty, down home dishes sure to get the taste buds working.”Hinsch, 65, who moved to the Plum Creek section of Huntersville from Long Island in March 2006, is thrilled with the reception her cookbook has received thus far. “This was a labor of love from start to finish and I did it all by myself, so these positive comments are very gratifying.”The 524-page book is self-published with Traffold Publishing Co. of Bloomington, Ind., and lists for $25.75. It is available on amazon.com and numerous other book websites.She started writing the cookbook in the late 1950s. “I still have my first, handwritten book. Then, about 20 years ago, I made a first draft for my nieces, who were getting married at the time. The book had grown to about 60 recipes. Following that, I expanded and added recipes from my cousins, and the deli recipes for salads, meats and catering recipes, such as Swedish meatballs. I also received recipes from other relatives, friends, even a couple from my old bosses.” In all, Hinsch cobbled together more than 600 German family recipes, an accomplishment made all the more remarkable because she battled major medical issues during the past 10 years, including five years on kidney dialysis.The recipes have been translated, and the measurements have been converted to American weights and measures. Included is more than 50 pages of tips, hints, baking times and temperatures, substitutions and a full glossary. “I have made just about every one of the 600 recipes,” Hinsch said. She joked that her recipe for Opa’s Deli Potato Salad was good for “a 10-pound weight gain.” The original recipe started with 50 pounds of potatoes and it took Hinsch quite a few tries to get it down to three pounds. “It was fun, however, getting there.”Even her daughters have become enthralled with their Mom’s cookbook recipes. “I use Opa’s cole slaw the most,” said Bethany Hinsch, 34, who lives outside of Washington, D.C., in suburban Virginia. “My job is extremely busy so I ad-lib a lot. What I do is buy the cole slaw mix in the supermarket (not the one with red cabbage – that turns the coleslaw all red), and then add half of everything in Opa’s recipe. It turns out fantastic.”Sara, 32, likes her Mom’s recipe for stuffed mushrooms. “I love this because its’ a great make-ahead dish. All the ingredients can be set up in the mushrooms and then cooked at the last minute along with whatever you have in the oven. It works as a side or appetizer.” And what is the author’s favorite recipes? “Oma’s beef rouladen is our favorite Christmas dinner and the most requested meal from my family. Chicken soup with Oma’s German dumplings is wonderful, and I also personally love the German pancakes with apples.”
Friday, Mar. 08, 2013
Huntersville woman hits the spot with German cookbook
The 600 recipes were first translated and collated in this looseleaf binder by Eleanor Hinsch before being published. DAVE VIESER
In her Huntersville kitchen, cookbook author Eleanor Hinsch shows off her family's favorite recipe for Oma's Beef Rouladen. DAVE VIESER
Want to buy it? “German Recipes: Five Generations of Family Recipes” is sold at a list price of $25.75 on numerous online book sites including amazon.com, and Barnes and Noble.