“Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes With a French Accent” by Jennifer Hill Booker, Pelican Publishing Co., $26.95, 192-page hardcover
Seared foie gras and smoked ham hocks. Recipes for both dishes are found side by side in Jennifer Hill Booker’s cookbook “Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes With a French Accent.”
Booker combines her family’s down-home Mississippi cooking with classic French culinary techniques to create her own take on contemporary Southern cuisine. In her cookbook, she shares more than 130 recipes that she says reflect the best of both Southern and French cuisines.
Booker writes about growing up on her family’s Charleston, Mississippi, farm, where she learned to cook traditional Southern foods using fresh, local ingredients. Watching Julia Child’s cooking show on television and a high school graduation trip to Paris piqued her interest in French cooking.
Eventually, she and her military husband would move to Germany, where she worked as a personal chef and taught Germans how to cook American food. She later graduated from Le Cordon Bleu culinary training school in Paris and today is the owner of Your Resident Gourmet, LLC, in Atlanta.
She divides her book’s recipes into nine chapters, beginning with jellies, jams and preserves and ending with drinks and cocktails.
In between are recipes for pickled foods like Pickled Beets With Shallots & Garlic; vegetables fresh from the garden, like Southern Fried Corn and Gram’s Coleslaw; beans and greens; breads; breakfast foods, including a recipe for Scrambled Eggs & Hog Brains; supper foods; and desserts.
This is an attractive book with plenty of full-color photographs and well-written, easy-to-follow recipes.
Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Contact her at email@example.com, and follow her on Twitter, @CheramieSonnier.