The Southern Foodie by Chris Chamberlain was the first cookbook I have ever reviewed, especially on a kindle. The moment you open the cookbook on kindle you get right into the index.
On my food blog, Whine and Cheese, I featured some of the recipes. The recipes are great, but some do not explain clearly on how to prepare the ingredients. In one recipe, I wasn’t sure if I should cook the fresh collard greens. In the Southwest, we do not have canned collard greens on the shelves. It’s distinctly southern. But we do have them fresh in the produce section. Having never tried collard greens, I didn’t know whether collard greens are steamed or what-not, and had to guess.
The stories of the different restaurants in the south read like a review. They were less interesting than the recipes themselves. The recipes I tried turned out great, and since I usually substitute or improve upon any recipe, that is not a detriment to the book. I have decided to keep the cookbook on my kindle and not delete it. I am still working on trying the recipes. My food blog is accessible at www.thehahnhuntinglodge.com.
I would recommend the book to anyone curious about southern cuisine. Just don’t expect the narratives on the restaurants to excite you as the shows on the Food Network or to read like Rachel Ray’s travel/recipe book. I gave this book four stars.
A friend was coming over, and as I debated about what to make I thought of that recipe I copied a week ago, but due to lack of time never baked: Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting. I rummaged through my kitchen drawers, hoping I had some cupcake wrappers left, and found them. They were Christmas cupcake papers.
“I’m being green.” I thought with a grin. Why hold them until Christmas when I need them right now?
As I dumped the ingredients into the bowl I thought of my friend. She was eagerly looking forward to coming over for dinner. It’s nice to have friends who enjoy your company. Food is a lot more than something required to nourish us so our body can work properly; it’s an expression of love and friendship.
When I first learned to cook it was to gain acceptance. I was also inspired by my grandmother who used to let me lick the paddles of her mixer when she was done. The duty of cooking and baking evolved into a passion and an expression of love for me over the years. Whether people knew it or not, it was my way of saying, I love you when all other words failed.
I love inviting my friends and family to get comfortable in our home. They can put their feet on the furniture. They can spill. Nothing is taboo. They hang out in the kitchen with me, watch the television, and laughter fills the empty spaces of our house. The only rule is honesty.
What special memories do you hold of cooking or baking? Describe them.