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COOK & CELEBRATE
Johnathon Scott Barrett, who author Janis Owens refers to as "a Prince of a host" takes you on yet another Southern food journey within the pages of his newest book. Following his culinary memoir, Rise & Shine! and the subsequent recipe-filled anthology, Cook & Tell, Barrett presents the convivial and delicious Cook & Celebrate. Barrett takes readers from the Commonwealth of Virginia, down to the Carolina and Georgia Lowcountry, over to Mobile Bay, and on jaunts in between to showcase the favorite dishes (and the stories behind them) that Southerners use to fete the holidays, and one another. Memories abound with Hoppin' John and collards at New Year's, fried chicken and potato salad on Independence Day, sweet, cloud-like coconut cakes at Easter, and the veritable Tom Turkey and cornbread dressing which crown dining tables at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Barrett shares these recipes, along with 100+ more, while introducing in each chapter friends and loved ones along the way. And besides their enthusiasm for the holidays, Southerners, with their ingrained sense of graciousness, are also known for toasting life and one another with a variety of appetizing affairs. Barrett relates herein with a sampling of delightful soirees and dinners, some as casual as a fish-fry to others with four courses and your grandmother's silver and china. Cook & Celebrate is a wonderful, delectable, and nostalgic read that will invoke warm, festive memories and inspire you to celebrate life in the kitchen.
COOK & TELL
Cook & Tell: Recipes and Stories from Southern Kitchens is a moveable feast across Dixie showcasing the incredible food created in the homes of the South and the resulting tales that accompany those heartwarming dishes. Stops on this culinary sojourn include such food-rich cities as Savannah and Nashville, as well as the small hamlets of Millingport, North Carolina, and Nanafalia, Alabama, where farm-to-table food still has a prominent spot on the dining table. And in this warm and engaging anthology, Barrett includes not only his own entertaining stories and meaningful recipes but also those of friends met along the way. Some accounts come from family and hometown cooks, while others are from award-winning chefs and authors. COOK & TELL, a beautifully written collection of remembrances preserving the South’s rich intersection of foodways and oral histories, gives inspiration for readers to take pen to paper and record for themselves the special times and dishes that have shaped their own lives and those of their loved ones.
RISE AND SHINE!
Rise & Shine! is an engaging, funny, and poignant memoir about a Southern son and his life’s relationship with food. Barrett takes you on a decades-long journey of culinary exploration, starting in the 1960s in his hometown of Perry, Georgia. There in the low-rolling hills and slow-moving creeks of Middle Georgia he tells—with good humor and reflection—stories about his family, and how for generations farm-to-table food was a mainstay in their daily lives. He also relates how food was the common denominator for all aspects of life in the South, especially in small towns and rural communities. Barrett shares his need to leave behind those days of stewed squash and fried okra, and move on to what he felt were more sophisticated and global offerings. He discovered, however, that while he tried to take his palate of out of Dixie, there was always some Georgia red clay in his blood—and in his taste buds. Successfully melding those early days of learning the basics of Southern fare and later stretching his culinary skills, Barrett demonstrates in this narrative his formula for a successful casual dinner or a formal black tie affair. With several menus and 100 recipes ranging from down-home picnic offerings such as ‘Joyce’s Don’t Mess with Success Pimento Cheese’ to a magnificent platter of ‘Grouper Meunière,’ the author provides a wonderful array of delights for contemporary cooks. This culinary love letter to Barrett’s parents and other loved ones who raised him will make you laugh, maybe shed a tear, and fill your hearts with a renewed appreciation for the magic that can happen in a family’s kitchen.
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