Archive | October, 2010

Sampling Some of the Best Boudin in Louisiana’s Cajun Country

31 Oct

The first place I hit on this most recent trip was Don’s Specialty Meats in Scott, LA (on I-10 just west of Lafayette). This is not to be confused with the more well-known regional chain of Don’s Seafood restaurants. Don’s boudin (a traditional Acadian rice/meat stuffed sausage) is very highly rated by folks in the know (like The Boudin Link – www.boudinlink.com). We found it tasty — and quite spicy — but certainly not the best of the lot. The flaw we found with this particular link was the presence of rather large chunks of fat and gristle. We may have just gotten a bad batch, but it did negatively impact our first impression. Don’t worry, Don. We are willing to give you another shot sometime down the road. Take an online visit if you’d like at www.donsspecialtymeats.com.

Boudin is best when it’s served steaming hot out of the crock pot

Get your hog lard by the gallon for just $4.99 at Don’s!

Johnson’s Boucaniere in Lafayette provided us with perhaps the best taste of boudin on our recent visit. It was lean with just the right amount of spice. A little less fiery than Don’s, Johnson’s boudin recipe was perfected in nearby Eunice, LA at the now-departed Johnson’s Grocery. The legendary Eunice location closed after decades of service to the Cajun community. We’re just thankful that family members decided to continue on with the tradition in Lafayette. It apparently happened when Lori Wall’s (the daughter of the grocery’s owners) couldn’t find any decent Cajun meat products once the original Eunice store shut its doors for good.  Lori was recently quoted as saying, “When I make sausage at the house, my Dad’s there every time.”  www.johnsonsboucaniere.com

Mello Joy is a popular local brand of java served at Johnson’s

Lori Walls weighs our steaming hot link of boudin at Johnson’s

Lori’s husband Greg shows off the smokers out back at Johnson’s

“Home of Deboned Chickens” and amazing beef jerky & meat pies!

Hebert’s Specialty Meats in little Maurice, LA appears to be a larger, more diverse meat shop. They are said to do a solid mail order business and have locations as far flung as Houston, TX. Deboned Chickens are their specialty, but don’t let that fool you. Their housemade boudin is mellow and first rate — lacking in mouth-scorching spice yet packing plenty of savory flavor. Even better is their homemade beef jerky (coated with a somewhat magical dusting of sugar/spice). We also found Hebert’s Louisiana Meat Pies to be the best we’ve sampled this side of Natchitoches. Order up a few today at www.hebertsmeats.com.

Richard’s (pronounced “Reee-shards”) in mighty Abbeville, LA

We traveled on to Abbeville — primarily to visit the Stein’s Cane Syrup facility. Richard’s Seafood Patio is a popular gathering spot for locals here. It was too early on a Saturday morning for the patio to be open, so we settled for another taste of boudin at Richard’s Meat Market. The stop proved to be a worthwhile venture, although I wished that we could stick around longer for a dozen oysters at Black’s or Dupuy’s Oyster Bars. This town sure knows how to eat! I can’t give you a dining review of either oyster house, although I will add that Black’s appeared to be the cleaner and more appealing of the two options.

This trip yielded so many memorable culinary experiences. More than can be documented in just a single blog or two. Stay tuned for much more — coming to a computer near you over the next few days. Patience, my friends!

Crawfish Pie & More at Cafe Des Amis in Breaux Bridge, LA

29 Oct

Crawfish Pie – Cafe Des Amis style with accents of Green Onion

Our first real meal during our recent weekend trek thru Cajun Country took place in quaint Breaux Bridge, LA (just off I-10 near Lafayette). The name of the restaurant was Cafe Des Amis. We had visited once before, but they were sadly closed the last time we passed thru town. The Friday lunch business was fairly brisk as we settled in for our mid-day meal. For my main course, I opted for the crawfish pie. How can you not order this when in Cajun Country???

Yet I almost didn’t recognize it when it arrived at our table. The dish was fashioned with two flaky pillows of puff pastry — the bottom one hollowed out a bit to accomodate the buttery crawfish etoufee filling. Not your traditional presentation by any means. It did draw some serious attention, however. Four older gentlemen seated at the adjacent table commented that their meals looked “vanilla” in comparison. The pie was sensational — I would certainly recommend it highly. I guess I just have!

Crab Cakes (fried and grilled) with a Smoked Vidalia Cream Sauce

My lunch had started with a terrific crab appetizer (seen above). The smokey cream sauce and strips of sweet onion made an excellent foil for the crab cake combo (one grilled, one fried). Both cakes were tasty, but I honestly preferred the grilled version. The crab meat to breading ratio was perfectly acceptable and the cakes were nicely seasoned. As for the sauce, it was truly “plate-licking good.”

A look at some of the cool local art on display at Cafe Des Amis

The Gateau de Syrop (Syrup Cake) was the best bite of the day

Our lunch reached its high point with dessert. I normally don’t order dessert in the middle of the day, but we simply couldn’t resist the traditional Gateau de Syrop made with Steen’s 100% Cane Syrup (made in nearby Abbeville, LA). It was a masterpiece of gooey, black goodness … topped with lots of local pecans and equal portions of whipped creme anglaise and vanilla ice cream. My wife and kids gave it a go, but I most admit that I put the biggest dent in this dark beauty.  

I don’t think I can wait for a return visit to Breaux Bridge to try this rich, delicious cake again. So it’s probably a good thing we found the restaurant’s recipe on the web. Here’s the real-deal recipe from Cafe Des Amis … soooo darn good!

GATEAU DE SYROP (SYRUP CAKE) WITH CREME ANGLAISE

This recipe makes about 3 dozen large muffins.

Cut it in half to make a smaller amount. They also freeze beautifully.

Makes 16 slices

2 cups canola or peanut oil

3 ½ cups 100% pure cane syrup (we prefer Steen’s)

2 cups raw sugar

2/3 cup dark molasses

2 cups boiling water

4 teaspoons baking soda

8 eggs

4 teaspoons ground cinnamon

4 teaspoons ground cloves

4 teaspoons ground ginger

4 tablespoons vanilla extract

4 cups sifted flour

¾ cup chopped pecans

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the oil, cane syrup and molasses in a bowl.

In a separate bowl, stir baking soda into boiling water. Add to the oil, syrup and molasses mixture. Add all other remaining ingredients and beat well at medium to high speed with an electric mixer.

Fill large muffin tins, sprayed with nonstick vegetable spray, about three-fourths full. Bake at 350 degrees until they almost set, about 10 minutes. Add the chopped pecans on top and continue baking until the muffins are completely set.

Crème Anglaise

Makes about 2 cups

   1 cup whole milk

   1 cup heavy cream

   5 egg yolks

   ½ cup granulated sugar

   1 tablespoon bourbon

   Combine the milk and cream in a saucepan and bring just a boil.

Meanwhile, combine the egg yolks and the sugar in a mixing bowl and beat well until light yellow and slightly thickened. Gradually pour the milk and cream into the egg mixture, whisking constantly.

Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and stir over very low heat with a wooden spoon. Cook, stirring, without boiling until the sauce coats the back of the spoon. Do not overcook or it will curdle. Stir in the bourbon. Serve warm or chilled.

www.cafedesamis.com

Granny Hester’s Alabama Sweet Potato Biscuits are made with L-O-V-E

27 Oct

These babies are simply amazing — chunks of real sweet potatoes in every bite. Try them with butter and some Steen’s 100% Cane Syrup for a real treat! We were thrilled to find these at our local farmers market and urge all of you to seek them out. It’s a true taste of days gone by.

Granny Hester’s Homemade Sweet Potato Biscuits have been a Southern original since 1943. Always a family and friend favorite, Granny handed down her biscuit recipe to her granddaughter, Tracy Johnson. Tracy began filling orders for friends in 2005, and as the biscuits became more and more popular, Tracy used a friend’s coffee shop to bake and sell them. Tracy and a partner opened Granny Hester’s Fine Foods, LLC in 2008, on Gault Avenue in Fort Payne, Alabama—the exact location her grandparents owned and  operated the Fort Payne Bakery until 1971.

At one time they were only available around her dinner table in Alabama; now, Granny Hester’s biscuits bring southern hospitality to mealtime all over America. After being passed down from generation to generation, the recipe remains the same and folks all over still crave Granny Hester’s Sweet Potato Biscuits.

You can find these delicious homemade biscuits at several farm markets in the great state of Alabama — or order some straight from Granny’s kitchen in Ft. Payne, Alabama!

www.grannyhesters.com

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Apple Pie with Sweet Potato Biscuit Crust 

1 can apple pie filling

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoon butter

2 tablespoon sugar

6 Granny Hester’s Sweet Potato Biscuits    

Mix pie filling, cinnamon, and brown sugar and put them into a 9-inch pan. 

Thaw frozen biscuits until they can be split open.  

Place biscuits on top of apples and top with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.  

Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes until done.

STAX unveils “Albert King with Stevie Ray Vaughan in Session” CD/DVD Package

27 Oct

While there is no denying the immeasurable debt that modern blues and rock musicians owe to T-Bone Walker, the first bluesman to plug a guitar into an amplifier, and to B.B. King, who added sustained feedback and more to Walker’s innovations, Albert King was clearly the most influential blues guitar stylist from the mid-1960s on. Born April 25, 1923, Albert had begun his career as B.B. King disciple and, for a time, even claimed to be B.B.’s brother. (Both men were born in Indianola, Mississippi.)

By the time Albert signed with Stax Records in 1966, however, he had developed a highly personal guitar style marked by economical, rhythmically propulsive single-note lines and a razor-sharp tone produced by picking with his left thumb while bending wildly with his right fingers on the strings of a right-handed Flying V guitar turned upside down and tuned to an open E minor chord. His ground-breaking, soul-imbued recordings for the Memphis record company from 1966 to 1973 defined the state of modern blues during that period and had a vast impact on guitar players on both sides of the Atlantic. Not only did Albert’s signature style alter the approaches of such already established blues guitarists as Otis Rush and Albert Collins, but it had a tremendous impact on younger players like Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix, and particularly Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Stevie was born (October 3, 1954) and raised in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas, the same part of town in which T-Bone had grown up decades earlier. Stevie idolized Albert. Even before he was in his teens, Stevie had been captivated by the Mississippi guitar masher’s torrid tone, incisive phrasing, even the rocket-like shape of Albert’s instrument. The boy had other musical heroes–most notably older brother Jimmie Vaughan, as well as Lonnie Mack and Jimi Hendrix–but it was Albert’s influence that would remain the most pervasive throughout Stevie’s career.

One of 13 children, Albert was raised by his mother in Forrest City, Arkansas. His first “guitar” consisted of a wire nailed to the wall of his house; he picked it with a bottle. Later, he bought an acoustic guitar for $1.25 and eventually graduated to an electric model purchased for $125 at a pawnshop in Little Rock. After practicing for a few years, he began sitting in around Osceola, Arkansas with a group called Yancey’s Band. “They learned me my chords and what key was what,” Albert recalled 1983. “I didn’t know but two or three songs.”

Driving a bulldozer during the day, Albert soon formed his own band, the In the Groove Boys. “I learned ’em those three songs that I knew,” he explained with a chuckle, “and we’d play ’em fast, slow, and medium, but we got over.”

After singing gospel with the Harmony Kings in South Bend, Indiana and playing drums for Jimmy Reed in Gary, Albert made his first record, “Bad Luck Blues,” for the Parrot label in Chicago in 1953. The title proved prophetic, however, and he returned to Osceola for a while, then settled in East St. Louis, Illinois, where he began recording for Bobbin in 1959. He scored his first national hit, “Don’t Throw Your Love on Me So Strong,” two years later on the Cincinnati-based King label.

Albert didn’t return to the charts until 1966, when his Stax recording of “Laundromat Blues” became one of that year’s biggest blues hits. The innovative melding of Albert’s dry, husky baritone voice and incendiary lead guitar with the Memphis firm’s crack rhythm and horn sections brought blues into the soul era. His seminal Stax singles, which also included “Crosscut Saw” and “Born Under a Bad Sign,” were initially bought primarily by African Americans. With the introduction of “underground” FM radio in 1967, Albert began attracting white listeners—who had been primed by Eric Clapton’s incorporation of Albert’s licks and even entire solos into his popular sides with Cream—in increasingly large numbers. His 1968 debut at San Francisco’s Fillmore Auditorium solidified his crossover following. “People had been waiting to hear me play a long time before I even showed my face out there,” recalled Albert, who remained until his death one of the few blues artists to consistently attract substantial numbers of both black and white fans.

At the In Session taping, 60-year-old Albert ruled over the proceedings like a benevolent father, retaining control while allowing his 29-year-old guest loads of solo space in which to display his awesome command of the electric guitar. Stevie avoided flaunting his prowess, however, and instead delivered some of the most deliciously restrained playing of his career, laying back when his mentor dictated, turning up the heat only when Albert deemed it appropriate. The interplay between the two blues masters is uncannily empathetic, and Albert’s fans will find special pleasure in hearing him play rhythm parts at such length. At one point between tunes, Albert complained about problems with his guitar strings, then told Stevie, “I’m about ready to turn it over to you…. I’ve got to sit back and watch you.”

Albert was, in a sense, passing the torch to Stevie. The following month, in January 1984, Albert and his band traveled to Fantasy Records in Berkeley, California to record I’m in a Phone Booth, Baby. It would be his final album. He never did retire from the road, however, and continued touring until his death from a massive heart attack in Memphis on December 21, 1992. Albert was 69 and had enjoyed a full life in the blues.

Stevie wasn’t as fortunate. At the height of his career, on August 27, 1990, he was killed in a helicopter crash at Alpine Valley, Wisconsin. He was 35.

In Session is the only known recording of Albert King and Stevie Ray Vaughan performing together. Its long-overdue commercial release stands as a fitting tribute to the genius of two of the greatest musicians ever to have played the blues on electric guitar.

Albert King died December 21, 1992.

Concord Continues String of Great Jazz Reissues with Classic Recordings from Bill Evans & Wes Montgomery

21 Oct

WES MONTGOMERY – “BOSS GUITAR”

Wes Montgomery began his incredible series of recordings for Riverside in the organ trio context that he employed on gigs in his native Indianapolis. After a series of acclaimed albums featuring pianists, Montgomery ended his Riverside run by reuniting with Hammond B-3 master Melvin Rhyne on several sessions.

The first, Boss Guitar, featured Jimmy Cobb on drums, and the Miles Davis veteran (and future Montgomery working partner) inspired the guitarist and organist to their greatest recorded work together. Highlights include a cooking 6/8 version of “Besame Mucho,” the funky Montgomery blues “Fried Pies,” and Montgomery’s dazzling showpiece “The Trick Bag,” (each heard in both master and alternate takes.

BILL EVANS TRIO – “WALTZ FOR DEBBY”

This is the fourth and final album by one of the most influential groups in jazz history, a unit that redefined the notion of the piano trio. Recorded (like its companion volume Sunday at the Village Vanguard) just days before the highway accident that took bassist Scott LaFaro’s life, it summarizes the level of creative interaction that made the Bill Evans Trio a harbinger of jazz possibilities in the coming decades. Evans, LaFaro, and Paul Motian play with astounding freedom in these performances, maintaining all the while a keen balance and a pervasive sense of beauty. The flow of tempos and moods underscores the depth of the trio’s concept, casting a spell that remains undimmed some 50 years later.

www.concordmusicgroup.com

Two Terrific New Jazz Reissues from Concord Music

21 Oct

Chet Baker’s first sessions for Riverside form an East Coast counterpart to the Los Angeles quartet recordings that launched his career as a vocalist. They reveal less innocence and more soul than the earlier recordings, while still displaying the vulnerability that had already made Baker an icon beyond the realm of jazz singers and jazz trumpeters.

Working with musicians who were simultaneously contributing to the discoveries of Miles, Mingus, Dizzy, and Cannonball, focusing on some of the era’s greatest standards, and scatting for the first time on record, Baker displayed an innate musicianship in which voice and horn are complementary sides of the same unforgettable conception. Four bonus tracks add further value to one of Baker’s most memorable recordings.

This album was originally intended as an early Stateside acknowledgment of the power of Brazilian bossa nova, and it remains one of the best examples of early jazz samba. Guaraldi selected classic themes from the acclaimed film Black Orpheus, applying the superior sense of presentation that had already made him a leading trio pianist. The lasting impact of the album, however, can be traced to the incredibly popular Guaraldi original that led off the original LP’s contrasting second side of trio music. “Cast Your Fate to the Wind” became that rare phenomenon, an instrumental jazz hit single, and made Guaraldi a household name among jazz fans even before his Charlie Brown scores.

The best modern jazz classics are revisited in the Original Jazz Classics Remasters series. Each title in the series features 24-bit remastering, original AND new liner notes, fully restored artwork, and bonus tracks (when available).

www.concordmusicgroup.com

Chicken is back — in black!

20 Oct

Check out this recent New York Times piece …

PET a Silkie chicken and you understand how it got its name. The feathers are fine and flutter in wisps in the breeze. With a walnut-shaped crown of plumage, blue earlobes and feathers that come in a variety of colors, it’s a striking-looking bird that’s often raised for show.

Breeders also like them because they will hatch other birds’ eggs.

“They are such good moms,” said Frank R. Reese Jr., the founder of Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch in Lindsborg, Kan., who breeds Silkies for show. “They’ll sit on anything and hatch anything. They’ll hatch ducks, turkeys, chickens.”

Deprived of their striking outerwear, though, Silkies are far less appealing. They have bluish-gray skin, pitch-black bones and dark beige flesh (they’re sometimes called black-skinned chickens). They’re a scrawny pound or two, plucked, and are usually sold with the head and feet attached (with five toes, not the usual four).

Yet Asian cooks love them for their deep, gamy flavor, even in the breast meat. And with the nation’s Asian population growing, sales have soared.

Murray McMurray Hatchery in Webster City, Iowa, sells about 10,000 Silkies a year, up from a few hundred 10 years ago, when the hatchery first started raising the little birds, said Bud Wood, an owner.

“The majority are sold for ornamental purposes, but there’s a big market in San Francisco, where there are Asians, and in Minneapolis, where there’s a Hmong market,” Mr. Wood said. Japanese, Cambodians and Koreans also eat the Silkie, he said.

At K. K. Live Poultry in Brooklyn’s main Chinatown, Danny Wu, the owner, said he sells, butchers and cleans 3,000 Silkies a week, up from 400 a week 10 years ago. He attributes the growth to the number of Chinese moving from China and Taiwan to New York City.

 “They make it for soup, or for the broth for Mongolian hot pot,” he said, “and sometimes they make a curry.” For chefs outside Chinatown, though, it is not the easiest dish to sell.

“It’s a scary-looking creature,” said Patricia Yeo, of Sapa in Chelsea. She said she has her staff describe it as a deeply flavored, lean, free-range chicken.

She compares the Silkie to the blue-foot chicken, the domestic version of the poulet de Bresse of France; the blue-foot costs twice as much as the Silkie, she said. And unlike the blue-foot, the Silkie is rarely roasted.

In an Asian home, most often a Silkie will be made into a deeply flavored, aromatic, amber-colored soup, simmered or steamed with ginger, ginseng, dried wolfberries and dried red dates, also known as jujubes. The broth is usually served clear, but occasionally it has bits of meat in it. (A recipe can be found at nytimes.com/dining.)

In China, the Silkie is called wu gu ji — black-boned chicken. It has been prized for its medicinal value since the seventh or eighth century, said Yu Ying-Shih, a retired professor of Chinese and East Asian studies at Princeton University. Women who have just given birth eat it for energy. But its curative powers are not necessarily gender-specific.

When Professor Yu was a small boy growing up in Anhui, in southeastern China, he said, because he had constant headaches, he was given bowls of Silkie chicken soup to make the headache go away.

Did the soup work?

“I don’t know,” he said, “but probably it helped.”

That same soup can be ordered a day in advance at some restaurants in Manhattan’s Chinatown, like Oriental Garden and Danny Ng’s.

Cooked in the traditional way, with ginseng, the soup has a hint of bitterness. Without ginseng, it is simply an addictive, intensely flavored broth.

Yvonne L. C. Wong, an art consultant and trustee of the China Institute, makes her variation of the soup with Virginia ham, wolfberries, dried white yam, preserved orange peel and ginger. It may be to the Chinese what chicken soup is to Jews — liquid penicillin.

Ms. Yeo slow-cooks the chickens in curries and other braises. When she was growing up in Cambridge, England, she remembers, her grandmother visited from Kuala Lumpur and made the family the traditional Chinese soup in a clay pot.

For her black-skinned chicken slow-cooked in dark soy sauce at Sapa, Ms. Yeo braises the quartered chicken in a dark, aromatic sauce that includes onions, garlic, ginger, galangal, chilies, wolfberries, Chinese dried red dates, soy sauce and star anise.

“My secret ingredient?” she said, as she ran upstairs from the restaurant pantry to the kitchen. “Coke!” She said she substitutes it for the traditional rock sugar, because she likes Coke’s caramel flavor. She braises the chicken the night before she puts it on the menu, as a special, because it, like nearly all braised dishes, tastes better the next day.

At the Jefferson Restaurant in Greenwich Village, Simpson Wong takes an even more European turn. He cooks the Silkie leg and thigh as a confit in olive oil, seasoned with garlic and rosemary, for six hours, and does a quick sauté of the tender breast meat in a savory sauce of garlic, ginger, rice wine lees, oyster sauce and lemon balm.

At Chow Bar in Greenwich Village, Peter Klein serves slow-cooked black chicken in red Thai coconut sauce. He also slow-cooks it, shreds the meat and mixes it with an Asian barbecue sauce. Then he stuffs it into toasted Chinese bread, along with paper-thin slices of cucumber and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro leaves.

Mr. Klein asks his staff to describe the chicken as particularly fresh and lean.

“We try not to go into great detail,” he said. “The American public is a little squeamish.”

Where to Buy

Silkie chickens can be found in the following shops:

BAYARD MEAT MARKET 57 Bayard Street, (212) 619-6206.

DELUXE FOOD MARKET 79 Elizabeth Street, (212) 925-5766.

DYNASTY SUPERMARKET 68 Elizabeth Street, (212) 966-4943. Also sells all the other ingredients needed for the soup.

K. K. LIVE POULTRY 6221 Sixth Avenue, Brooklyn, (718) 439-3838.

Papa Rocco’s Pizza Rocks Gulf Shores, Alabama

19 Oct

A visit to the coast is not always about seafood. Sometimes you want an inexpensive meal or perhaps you are craving some good Italian food. Such a Sunday afternoon feeling led us to Papa Rocco’s Pizza in Gulf Shores, AL. It’s a short scooter ride from the beach. And, perhaps more importantly, we had heard good things via foodie chat on the web.

There are about 10 flat screen TVs inside Papa Rocco’s and it seemed like each one had a different NFL game on. Tourists decked out in Packers, Colts, Browns, and Rams attire mixed easily with fans of the New Orleans Saints (the closest thing that we have to a home team along the Alabama Coast).

We ended up feeding the family for just over $20 — and the pizza was pretty darn tasty! Ours came with pepperoni, Italian sausage, green peppers and red onion. To be honest, we could have probably downed a second pie — it was that good. The spaghetti and meatballs also looked very tempting. The meatballs were huge (well, about the size of billiard balls). The service was excellent and the atmosphere comfy. We will surely return. Thanks, Papa! 

www.paparocco.com

UGA Press publishes “The Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook”

5 Oct

The Southern Foodways Alliance Community Cookbook

Edited by Sara Roahen and John T. Edge
Foreword by Alton Brown

“Local recipes from the worldly South”

“Each page herein delivers a strong sense of community; the contributions are from real people with real names; the collection is democratic, but with nary a sign of culinary chaos; and the food is just plain good. And here’s the best part, as far as I’m concerned: Regardless of whether it looks back into the past or ahead into the future, this book looks ever Southward.”
—Alton Brown, from the foreword

Everybody has one in their collection. You know—one of those old, spiral- or plastic-tooth-bound cookbooks sold to support a high school marching band, a church, or the local chapter of the Junior League. These recipe collections reflect, with unimpeachable authenticity, the dishes that define communities: chicken and dumplings, macaroni and cheese, chess pie. When the Southern Foodways Alliance began curating a cookbook, it was to these spiral-bound, sauce-splattered pages that they turned for their model.

Including more than 170 tested recipes, this cookbook is a true reflection of southern foodways and the people, regardless of residence or birthplace, who claim this food as their own. Traditional and adapted, fancy and unapologetically plain, these recipes are powerful expressions of collective identity. There is something from—and something for—everyone. The recipes and the stories that accompany them came from academics, writers, catfish farmers, ham curers, attorneys, toqued chefs, and people who just like to cook—spiritual Southerners of myriad ethnicities, origins, and culinary skill levels.

Edited by Sara Roahen and John T. Edge, written, collaboratively, by Sheri Castle, Timothy C. Davis, April McGreger, Angie Mosier, and Fred Sauceman, the book is divided into chapters that represent the region’s iconic foods: Gravy, Garden Goods, Roots, Greens, Rice, Grist, Yardbird, Pig, The Hook, The Hunt, Put Up, and Cane. Therein you’ll find recipes for pimento cheese, country ham with redeye gravy, tomato pie, oyster stew, gumbo z’herbes, and apple stack cake. You’ll learn traditional ways of preserving green beans, and you’ll come to love refried black-eyed peas.

Are you hungry yet? Place your order now!

http://www.amazon.com/Southern-Foodways-Alliance-Community-Cookbook/dp/0820332755