Smoke, Roots, Mountain, Harvest Cookbook Review

Smoke, Roots, Mountain, Harvest Cookbook Review

Title: Smoke, Roots, Mountain, Harvest: Recipes and Stories Inspired by My Appalachian Home
Author: Lauren Angelucci McDuffie
Published: May 14, 2019, Chronicle Books
No. of Pages: 256
Cover Price: $29.95 Hardcover, $9.99 Kindle

For anyone who wonders what they eat in Appalachia and the Blue Ridge Mountains in rural Virginia, Smoke, Roots, Mountain, Harvest: Recipes and Stories Inspired by My Appalachian Home may be just the thing that belongs on the cookbook shelf. The writing is excellent, the stories are interesting, and most importantly, the recipes are for dishes that are unique to most, but tempting and definitely southern.

The book is divided into seasons, and has menus that correspond. There is a chapter on wine pairings, and several sections on spices, ingredients, and equipment that are used in the recipes. McDuffie even addresses moonshine, which most people have wondered about at some time or another.

Although some of the recipes are a bit fancier than one would expect to come out of rural Appalachia, there are many that are very simple and represent easy, down-to-earth dishes. Some of the recipes have a fair amount of ingredients, but most are easy to find or are already on pantry shelves; others are extremely simple and easy. All the recipes I’ve tried so far so far have turned out perfectly. One of her recipes, Greens, Eggs, and Ham, I’ve used several times because it makes a perfect brunch dish and uses up leftover greens. Incidentally, it doesn’t contain ham, but bacon instead, and I add ham too. The recipe for Cathead Biscuits is great, and they go well with the Greens, Eggs, and Ham. Other tempting recipes include Bourbon Broiled Salmon, Sweet Potato Hash Browns with Huckleberry-Mustard Sauce, and Fire-Roasted Stuffed Pumpkins. There are dozens of appealing recipes and McDuffie includes recipes for appetizers, salads, soups, main dishes, and desserts of all kinds.

Anyone who is interested in making the dishes served in Hillbilly country will love this cookbook. It’s for anyone who likes good, simple southern food. It’s well-written, well-organized, and the photographs are excellent, albeit there isn’t a photo for every dish, but most. Highly recommended.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

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