An excellent copy of one of the leading German-Jewish cookbooks, published in Leipzig in about 1892 or 1893. Little is known about the author Henny van Cleef, but it is apparent that she was a highly adept writer for the kitchen, rendering complex dishes with clarity, simplifying the recipes for those with little experience.
Economy and practicality are emphasized, making the book a “perfect gift for any young girl or woman in a Jewish household.” Traditional dietary regulations are of course adhered to, and the menus reflect the rule against mixing dairy and meat dishes. The food is appealing and marked by many combinations of fruit and meat. Typically a compote of apples and currants might be served as an accompaniment to a roast. Other compotes, intended as part of a meal rather than as a dessert, call for plums, cherries, melon, and sometimes sweet potatoes.
This is a substantial book (344 pages+ 16 pages of back matter), bound in a highly decorated case stamped in gold and black. It appears that each printing may have used a different colored binding fabric. Ours, the sixth printing, issued in about 1900, is green; others are known in red and in gray-blue.
The case, in general, is in Very Good condition, with minimal wear and only some darkening of the spine and half an inch along the fore-edge of the front panel, not impinging on the type or central image. The binding is secure, and the inner pages are clean, although browning and must be handled with some care. The front and rear endpapers carry advertising printed in red and black, one from the publisher, M.W. Kaufmann, noting that, in addition to books, they are sellers of “Tefillin, Mesusos, and Sefer Thoras,” as well as synagogue embroidery. The front free endpaper is missing a 3/8” triangle on the upper corner, not affecting the type area. It will be noted that the text, except for the advertisements, is set in a good, clear fraktur typeface.