Garden of Eatin’

A Collection of Family Recipes

The Garden of Eatin’ is a collection of recipes that represent the ethnic and culinary landmarks of our family history. These recipes come from grandmothers and grandfathers, moms and dads, nieces and nephews. In-laws and even in-and-out-laws have contributed, but the recipes–and the memories of food-inspired moments–remain.

Some are recipes that Mom used to make–those comforting flavors of hearty, home-cooked meals. Others are simply old standbys that have morphed and been enjoyed so often in family situations that they can’t break free of inclusion.

In memory of our moms and grandmothers…

Zihrena's Garden of Eatin' Family Recipes Cookbook

The family recipes reunite the tastes of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Russia, Germany, Canada, Chile, Mexico , Great Britain, the USA. . . the list constantly grows. They represent the influences that have entered our lives as our nomadic instincts have shifted us into other climes and new members have married into the family.

Grandma always had food ready for us, in enormous quantities, when we went to visit. Just looking at the ingredients of these evokes vivid olfactory recollections of warm spices, ground nuts, and rising yeast.

Naturally, I have thrown in a few other things that I, personally, think are particularly good, whether the rest of the family agrees or not..

The images and artwork

Interspersed in the recipes are drawings, sketches, and doodles by the kids as well as more elaborate and serious adult artistic creations, making this a true family scrapbook and part of the family heritage. A family photo or two also grace the pages.

Since starting this recipe collection, I’ve followed a largely plant-based diet with very occasional meals of fish and seafood. I no longer prepare or eat many of the old recipes that appear here, although I do enjoy the memories of the long-ago and recent family reunions and the warm kitchens in which we have gathered. However, I have made vegan adaptations to many of the recipes that have allowed for it, and I include them here for anyone else who’d like to experiment.


Reunion 2012: Family Recipes Archive
Family reunion 2012

First printing 1995; Second printing 1997; Adapted for web 2009-2021. © All Rights Reserved