If a you have a fan of Garden & Gun, the magazine about all things southern, on your holiday gift list, the new cookbook from its editors would make a great gift.
“The Southerner’s Cookbook: Recipes, Wisdom, and Stories” celebrates the South’s bounty and culinary traditions with more than 125 recipes, 20 percent of them from top Southern chefs, and the remainder developed by the magazine’s staff.
David DiBenedetto, the magazine’s editor-in-chief, says in the introduction that he hopes the book’s recipes will be a great primer for those new to Southern cooking — help them understand “why eating here is such a joy” — plus inspire those who grew up in the South with new ideas.
The book begins with a description of the Southern larder, from buttermilk to winter wheat flour, and then moves into recipes, beginning with party bites and appetizers, such as bacon crackers and pimento cheese.
Other chapters look at chicken; pork, beef and lamb; fish and shellfish; game; vegetables and sides; baked goods and desserts; condiments, sauces and spreads; and cocktails.
Each chapter is introduced by some of the magazine’s regular contributors, including Julia Reed, Matt Lee and Ted Lee, Rick Bragg, Roy Blount Jr. and John T. Edge. And each recipe comes with a story, plus detailed instructions.
The book is beautifully illustrated with full-color photos, but not all recipes are accompanied by photos of the completed dishes.
Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Contact her at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter at @CheramieSonnier.