March 2006

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Dear Friends,

Thank you for your orders, both direct to our Penfield companies, or through Penfield is proud to be entering its 27th year, continuing our commitment to publishing the best of ethnic titles. We pride ourselves on originating new materials, and on keeping our titles in print for as long as they are being sought. We are pleased at the popularity of many of our titles, and we try to be responsive to your suggestions, contributions, and ideas.

Stewing in Texas

Exciting Penfield news for 2006 includes the release of a new title, Stewing in Texas: Recipes Sizzling in Texas History, a Cookbook War, and More. This 128-page volume tells the fascinating and often hilarious account of what happens when we were sued in Texas on the copyrightability of recipes. Follow the story of the pending lawsuit through the eyes of this publisher and the words of one extraordinary Texas district court judge for both dramatic reading and hearty laughter. 

This is not only the suspenseful tale of a cookbook caper, but a great source for the best historic recipes for classic Texas cooking. Read how Texas cookbook expert Carol Blakely rode to the rescue with decades of knowledge of Texas recipes, and how this publisher was aided by a cast of friends, lawyers, and lawyers who are friends! This unusual book is now available at $18.95, and is of interest to anyone who ever entered a courtroom or consumed a bowl of chili.


Because so many people want Ukrainian recipes, we have decided to compile a larger format book, titled Ukrainian Touches. We hope this will be available for release in late 2007, or earlier if possible. We need Ukrainian recipes, and we need to correspond with Ukrainian institutions in America. If you have contributions or suggestions, please call or write us anytime at

David and Jeanne Wright
David and Jeanne Wright

We are blessed to have the new freelance services of Jeanne and David Wright of Decorah, Iowa, as associate editors at Penfield. Both Jeannie and David are Iowans, but they spent over 25 years in New York City, where they were associated with the Morgan Library. They bring us experience in marketing, editing, and writing — and they will be helping with the Ukrainian book and many other projects. We also hope to compile new small books (in our stocking-stuffer format) for Icelandic and Hungarian recipes. Please contact us if you have information or recipes for those cultures.

Out of my deep grief for the loss of our grandson and researcher, Jordan Heusinkveld (read my last letter, 2003, just below this one), I have not written a new letter for three years for our website. Jordan was killed in a car accident at age 19. Always our sadness will remain. Jordan would want us to continue and not be burdened with overwhelming grief; we are carrying on to the best of our abilities.

In the last three years, we have released new versions of Time-Honored Norwegian Recipes ($6.95), Sweden’s Regional Recipes($14.95), and Norwegian Troll Tales ($12.95). These have been well received, and continue to be very popular. A brand new stocking stuffer, Dutch Style Recipes, is now available. This little volume incorporates some of the best contents of earlier Penfield Dutch-American books, and includes some of our favorite Dutch recipes of all time. The new title is enhanced by its beautiful new covers, showing tulips in Oregon and Washington State, as well as a fine picture of a costumed girl named Kaeleigh DeWaard of Pella, Iowa. For a glimpse of these spectacular cover photographs, see the “new books” section of our web page. You can order it today for $6.95, plus shipping and handling. And remember, there are always discounts when you order extra copies for family or friends. A great gift for tulip time or Dutch-American Heritage Day!

Watch for these and other new titles throughout 2006 and 2007. And thank you again for helping make Penfield one of the best resources for the books that connect you to your history and heritage.

Joan Liffring-Zug Bourret, publisher