Sweet Potato Soul

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Claiborne, Jenne. Sweet Potato Soul: 100 Easy Vegan Recipes for the Southern Flavors of Smoke, Sugar, Spice, and Soul. USA: Harmony books. 2018.

SUMMARY:
Mixing vegan with Southern cuisine in her new cookbook, cooking instructor, blog creator, and vegan chef, Jenne Claiborne, proves taste, soul, health and tradition can truly be combined. Named after her blog and YouTube channel, Sweet Potato Soul shares recipes, knowledge, personal stories and a bit of spiciness. Recipes for breakfast, salads, soups, sides, sauces, mains, desserts and drinks are included in a well organized manner. Coupled with beautiful photography, diners won’t miss the meat at all!

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Surprised to find such a tempting cookbook filled with vegan recipes, it was perfectly pleasing both visually and content-wise. Already being mindful of what I eat and heading towards a more vegan lifestyle, I was thrilled to find the recipes easy to prepare, the ingredients easily accessible, the information helpful and the meals nourishing, healthy and delicious. Favorites already, Sweet Potato Hummus and Sweet Corn Succotash are Southern and so delectable- they will be staples in our house from now on. So enjoyably appetizing!

RATING:
5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Sweet Potato Soul from Blogging For Books for my honest review*

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Country Cooking From A Redneck Kitchen

Bryson, Francine. With Volkwein, Ann. Country Cooking From A Redneck Kitchen. New York: USA. Clarkson Potter /Publisher. 2016.

countrycookingfromaredneckkitchen

SUMMARY:
Cookbook author, local and national baking champion, TV star and book award finalist, baker Francine Bryson now shares her love of Southern cooking in her newest book, Country Cooking From A Redneck Kitchen. With recipes fit for a party, gathering, picnic, potluck or family meal, hearty and happy attendees are guaranteed. Burgers, BBQ, sides, bread and desserts are all included. With colorful photographs and personal anecdotes, the recipes are as fun as they are tasty…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Though most of the recipes appealed to me, the section on Breads and Rolls was my favorite. Blackberry Pecan Bread, Sweet Potato Biscuits, Peanut Butter Muffins, and Lemonade Rolls make the perfect accompaniment to main dish meals. Though some of the ingredients were not our usual fare, they were easily switchable. The one thing I missed was a few more photographs as the ones included were well done (and I absolutely love pictures in a cookbook). A perfect cookbook for the summer months as well as the winter months, it is definitely crowd-pleasing. For dessert tonight…Sweet Potato Spice Cake…yum!

RATING:
4 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Country Cooking From A Redneck Kitchen from Blogging For Books for my honest review*

New Southern Table

Millwe, Whitney. Whitney Miller’s New Southern Table: My Favorite Family Recipes With A Modern Twist. Nashville, TN: Nelson Books. 2015.

SUMMARY:
newsoutherntableTime-tested, family-favorite recipes are the staple of New Southern Table. Growing up in the South, author and chef Whitney Miller learned at home to cook, extend hospitality and always make sure lots of food was on hand for the many guests. Taking traditional, classic recipes and adding new twists, lightening them up, and using new techniques and cooking methods, the winner of Masterchef shares her newest creations in this more modern cookbook. Complete with beautiful meal pictures, family photographs and personal accounts, New Southern Table is sure to whet some appetites.

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Liking her premise of family dinners, I thought Whitney Miller’s newest cookbook was full of delicious, simple recipes based on several I already know and make. With some novel recipes mixed with twists on others, I only wish some of the recipes had been lighter-fare but a few changes to the ingredients can fix that easily. The best part? Learning of the many non-profits the author is involved with, donating her speaking and cooking services- I applaud her for that as well as her new book.

RATING:
4 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Whitney Miller’s New Southern Table from BookLook Bloggers for my honest review*

Lighten up, y’all

Willis, Virginia. Lighten up, y’all: Classic Southern Recipes make Healthy and Wholesome. Ten Speed Press. 2015.

SUMMARY:
SouthernHaving grown up in a kitchen cooking with her grandma, Virginia Willis was inspired to purse a career in cooking. Attending culinary school while also incorporating what she learned from her own family, she cooks and eats for pure enjoyment and happiness. Struggling with her weight, she realized that cooking (especially Southern cooking) needed to return to healthy while keeping the traditional flavors. Not a diet but rather a way of life, Lighten up, y’all takes favorite Southern recipes and makes them lighter, healthier, yet tasty for all.

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Loving Southern cooking, I was delighted to find a book which combined taste and health in a gorgeous cookbook. Full of corresponding pictures, nutritional values, personal thoughts and ideas, and useful tidbits and skills (when cutting a large squash-roll the squash back and forth into the knife rather than the knife into the squash-who knew?),  Lighten up, y’all  is a wonderful addition to my growing cookbook collection. Easy, practical and delicious, the recipes include salads, seafood, vegetables (lots), soups and other Southern fare, all “lightened up” in ingredients and methods (baking vs. deep frying). Though based on my own preferences for food, I appreciated (and truly enjoyed) the Sinless Seven-Layer Dip with Squash Chips, the Summer Squash Casserole (made with winter squash now), and the Salmon Patties with Lemon-Caper Sauce. Definitely family-friendly and health-conscious, Lighten up, y’all will become a well-used (and recommended) book in my kitchen.

RATING:
5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Lighten up, y’all from Blogging for Books for my honest review*