Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup
Two grandmas. Two delicious recipes. And one granddaughter caught in the middle! Sophie loves Bubbe’s Jewish chicken soup, made with kreplach. She also loves Nai Nai’s Chinese chicken soup, with wonton. But don’t tell Bubbe and Nai Nai that their soups are the same! Can Sophie bring her whole family together for a warm and tasty surprise?
|Interest Level||Preschool - Grade 3|
|Reading Level||Grade 2|
|Genre||Fiction, Picture Books|
|Publisher||Lerner Publishing Group|
|Imprint||Kar-Ben Publishing ®, Lerner Digital ™|
|Number of Pages||32|
- Sydney Taylor Book Award Notable
Jewish Book Council
“Sophie has two grandmas, one Jewish and one Chinese. Both make chicken soup, one with carrots and kreplach, one with green onions and wontons. Whose soup is better? This touchy subject is nicely resolved when Sophie invites both grandmas to bring over soup for lunch. As the grandmas check out each other’s pots, Sophie and her father pour the two soups together into one tureen. That’s when Bubbe confesses that she uses wonton wrappers to make her kreplach, and Nai Nai admits she buys kosher chicken because the flavor is better. ‘A little Jewish, a little Chinese — a lot like me,’ says Sophie.
This is a wonderful book both for multiethnic families and for developing sensitivity to multiethnic families as well as for anyone interested in cultural similarities in food. Watercolor and pencil illustrations are cheery and bright, with wonderful endpapers which enhance the book’s artistic feel.”—Jewish Book Council
The Jewish Chronicle
“Sophie Chang loves Bubbe’s kreplach soup and NaiNai’s wonton soup. Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup by Pamela Mayer and Deborah Melmon (Kar-Ben, £6)explains how the family finds a way to blend their two traditions into one warming recipe. Cosy and reassuring.”—The Jewish Chronicle
“Lucky is the child who gets to savor two different kinds of chicken soup made by her two grandmothers. Dark-haired Sophie has a Jewish bubbe (Grandma Ellie—her mother’s mom) and a Chinese nai nai (Grandma Nancy—her father’s). The grandmothers are miffed when Sophie calls the dumplings in their soups by the wrong terminology. The girl wonders: ‘How could a little piece of dough, stuffed with meat and floating in a bowl of chicken soup, cause a problem?’ The grandmothers are quick to point out the differences between kreplach and wonton, but Sophie has a plan to show her elders how good a mixture of ‘a little Jewish, a little Chinese—a lot like me’ can be. The grandmothers confess their cookery has become less traditional: Bubbe uses wonton wrappers instead of the usual handmade dough, and Nai Nai buys her chicken at the kosher market, saying it tastes better, but they both acknowledge their love and admiration for their granddaughter. The amusing cartoonish illustrations don’t overplay Sophie’s diverse origins, which are made explicit in the text. Recipes for chicken soup, chicken-liver kreplach, and chicken wontons close out this good-hearted tale. The story may a little obvious, but the good feelings (and good tastes) that it brings to mind are cooked just right for families like Sophie’s—and everyone else—to enjoy.”—Kirkus Reviews
Author: Pamela Mayer
Pamela Mayer lives in San Francisco, writes children's books, and works as a children's librarian. She and her husband have two daughters and a very cute dog named Charlie.
Illustrator: Deborah Melmon
Deborah Melmon has been a freelance illustrator in the San Francisco Bay area for over 30 years. Among her many picture books are Picnic at Camp Shalom, Speak Up, Tommy, One Good Deed, and Chicken Soup, Chicken, Soup. Deborah lives with a comical Airedale Terrier named Mack.