Friday, September 11, 2020

I Heart Soul Food: 100 Southern Comfort Food Favorites


I Heart Soul Food is a tutorial style/cuisine guide with 100 comfort food recipes developed by Rosie Mayes. Due out 27th Oct 2020 from Sasquatch Books, it's 256 pages (print edition) and will be available in paperback and ebook formats.

I grew up in a southern family. Our comfort food was a blending of Irish traditional and pure southern soul food. Family reunions (usually extended/combined because our family was so small) were food-centric affairs, accompanied by lots of hugs and *massive* competition levels of comfort food. The tables would be groaning. There were always ribs, sweet potato pies, collard greens, gravy & biscuits, deviled eggs, cakes & pies galore, and so much more. Reading through this cookbook collection had me nodding my head on every page. These are the comfort foods I remember from my childhood. 

The recipes are grouped thematically: breakfasts, snacks, staples soups salads & sandwiches, sides, supper, dessert, drinks. These are prefaced by a good introduction and background with a little bit of author bio. The introductory material includes a good overview over tools and staples for stocking the soul food pantry. 

Each of the recipes includes an introductory description, ingredients listed in a bullet point sidebar (US measurements only, though there's a conversion chart in the back of the book), and step by step instructions (often accompanied by process photos). I would estimate roughly 20% of the recipes are accompanied by photographs. The photos provided are high quality and clear. Serving sizes and yields are included. None of the recipes include nutritional information. 

The recipe ingredients themselves are easily sourced and will be available at most well stocked grocery stores. There are a very few ingredients which might be a little more difficult to source, but definitely nothing that is 'way out there'. 

These are beautifully presented home-style comfort food, well developed, and lovingly made. I found so many favorites from my childhood. Five stars. This is a definitive and -usable- soul food cookbook. There's nothing pretentious here, just really good food, well made.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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