Screen Doors and Sweet Tea
Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook
By Martha Hall Foose
(Clarkson Potter, Hardcover, 9780307351401, 256pp.)
Publication Date: April 29, 2008
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Gifted chef and storyteller Martha Hall Foose invites you into her kitchen to share recipes that bring alive the landscape, people, and traditions that make Southern cuisine an American favorite.
Born and raised in Mississippi, Foose cooks Southern food with a contemporary flair: Sweet Potato Soup is enhanced with coconut milk and curry powder; Blackberry Limeade gets a lift from a secret ingredient–cardamom; and her much-ballyhooed Sweet Tea Pie combines two great Southern staples–sweet tea and pie, of course–to make one phenomenal signature dessert. The more than 150 original recipes are not only full of flavor, but also rich with local color and characters.
As the executive chef of the Viking Cooking School, teaching thousands of home cooks each year, Foose crafts recipes that are the perfect combination of delicious, creative, and accessible. Filled with humorous and touching tales as well as useful information on ingredients, techniques, storage, shortcuts, variations, and substitutions, Screen Doors and Sweet Tea is a must-have for the American home cook–and a must-read for anyone who craves a return to what cooking is all about: comfort, company, and good eating.
MARTHA HALL FOOSE was the executive chef of the Viking Cooking School. Born and raised in the Mississippi Delta, she attended the famed pastry school École Lenôtre in France. She returned to Mississippi and opened Bottletree Bakery–a Southern institution in Oxford–and later, with her husband, Mockingbird Bakery in Greenwood. She makes her home in Tchula, Mississippi, on her family’s farm with her husband and their son.
"This is one cookbook I would proudly have in my kitchen! It has great information and wonderful recipes!"
—Paula Deen, Food Network host and bestselling cookbook author
“Martha can truly cook. Some familiar but never predictable recipes–pimiento cheese, gumbo, cornbread–besides being too good to leave out, are joined in this sterling cookbook with many others less commonly seen but no less superlative, all unmistakably Southern, like Delta hot tamales, for example, or West Indies salad (from Mobile, circa 1940s), salmon croquettes, biscuits with tomato gravy, and black bottom pie. Her book is one to be cherished, shared, and consumed.”
—John Egerton, author of Southern Food: At Home, on the Road, in History
“If you’ve got a rocker on the front porch, get into it; if not, settle into your favorite chair. In either case, fix yourself a long drink and give yourself the pleasure of spending a little time with Martha Foose on her Mississippi farm before you head into the kitchen. Martha is that delightful combination of charming storyteller and darn good cook and in this book you get generous servings of each–both are delicious.”
—Dorie Greenspan, author of Baking From My Home to Yours
“Martha Foose's Screen Doors and Sweet Tea is a treasure-chest of superb recipes like Green Chile Rice, Lady Pea Salad, and Sweet Tea Pie. And her stories of growing up in Mississippi have the unmistakably Southern cadence of tales swapped across the dinner table. The book has given us a new appreciation for the genius of Delta cuisine, and even better, it has us yearning to cook, gather friends, and tell stories.”
—Matt Lee and Ted Lee, authors of The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook
“This book takes me back to the things I loved about my childhood in the rural south. I can’t wait to get copies for my mother and aunts. I love it.”
—John Besh, chef-owner of Restaurant August, Besh Steak, Lüke, and La Provence
“This is it. The real thing. Honest eats. And diverting tales. From Martha Foose's Mississippi Delta, that queer and otherworldly land of catfish and cotton.”
—John T. Edge, author of Fried Chicken: An American Story