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Recipes and Stories

26 January 2021: A Fresh Start, Winter Comfort, and Mastering My Grandmother's Sweet Potato Pie

MaMa's Sweet Potato Custard with Bourbon Whipped Cream

 

That hackneyed saw about old dogs and new tricks has never felt more depressingly true than it has in my kitchen over the last few months.

 

The pandemic lockdown might, for some, have been a challenging adventure into previously unexplored culinary avenues. But let's face it, most of us are really not all that adventurous. For every undauntable wanderer there are probably a dozen or more of us who'd just as soon stay in with a good book and cup of tea.

 

This tired old dog is one of the latter. I settled into a nest lined with an endless cycle of repeated comfort food favorites, emerging only when forced into dipping my toes into new territory out of necessity to keep my newspaper column interesting.

 

The end of the column brought with it an end to any motivation to go exploring. Read More 

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14 October 2016: Baked Ham Steak with Pineapple and Sweet Potatoes

Baked Ham Steak with Pineapple and Sweet Potatoes

When canned pineapple was first introduced more than a century ago, cooks in places where the fruit had always been an imported and therefore rare and expensive luxury probably went a bit overboard with it. Not only had it suddenly become affordable, it was trimmed of its spike-leaved top knot, its prickly skin and tough core were removed, and it had been neatly cut into conveniently attractive rings.

Not surprisingly, during the early part of the twentieth century, those canned pineapple rings began turning up in all kinds of “fancy” dishes Read More 

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22 October 2014: Sweet Potato Salad

My sweet potato salad as made by friend Betsy Hollis for the recent Manna Club gathering where my cookbooks were honored and celebrated.

After I left architectural practice and was waiting for the publication of my first book, Classical Southern Cooking, in a moment of what can only called temporary insanity, I let a former cooking student sweet talk me into opening the kitchen of her new downtown café. Though I had long been writing about andteaching home cooking, I had absolutely no professional cooking experience. But she needed a cook and I needed work and, besides, wanted the experience.  Read More 

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